MJ's Big Ten rankings: Illini seventh

MJ's Big Ten rankings: Illini seventh

Sunday is the deadline for underclassmen to declare for the NBA. Based on what’s happened so far, here’s an early look at how the Big Ten might play out for the 2013-14 season:

1. Michigan State
Spartans lose only Derrick Nix and return Gary Harris, who would have been a lottery pick

2. Michigan
Player of the Year Trey Burke is gone, but the nucleus of Mitch McGary, Glenn Robinson III and Nik Stauskas makes Wolverines dangerous

3. Ohio State
Expect LaQuinton Ross to pick up Deshaun Thomas’ scoring load with senior Aaron Craft running the show

4. Wisconsin
Badgers are here because Josh Gasser is back — and they’ve finished in the top four in 12 straight seasons

5.  Indiana
The loss of All-Americans Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller hurt, but Tom Crean continues to usher elite talent into Bloomington

6. Iowa
Fran McCaffery’s team finished its season in the NIT championship game. Plus everyone is back, including Roy Devyn Marble

7. Illinois
The Illini have serious holes to fill. A lot will depend on development of five freshmen

8. Penn State
All-Big Ten guard Tim Frazier will be back from injury to complement D.J. Newbill and Jermaine Marshall, who shined in his absence

9. Purdue
A.J. Hammons returns after a stellar rookie campaign along with the Johnson brothers (Terone, Ronnie)

10. Minnesota
First-year coach Richard Pitino will have the Hollinses (Andre, Austin) back but must replace frontcourt stalwarts Rodney Williams and Trevor Mbakwe

11. Northwestern
Drew Crawford and JerShon Cobb should help, but Chris Collins’ first season requires much work

12. Nebraska
Tim Miles is popular in Lincoln and the Huskers have a shiny new building to play in, but the product on the floor is still a work in progress

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Bear8287 wrote on April 28, 2013 at 2:04 pm

Next season could be one of those years where 13 wins will get you a piece of the regular season B1G title.  If Nebraska only wins as many games as they did last year, they would still have 5 wins.  Instead of the 12 game spread from first to last that the past season held, we could be potentially looking at 8 or less.  Chris Collins may have a tough time keeping the Huskers underneath them in the final standings. 

I'm hoping that the Illini will move up the standings after having had a full season to adapt to a new coaching staff.

Go Illini!

calvin wrote on April 29, 2013 at 10:04 am

.....if only we still had Jereme........oh that's right, he's in prison