Call it a week-long sabbatical. Call it some early insight into the real March Madness — the NCAA Tournament.
Here’s a look at some of the top performers from the Big Ten Tournament.
Big Ten Tournament Top Performers
Corey Sanders, Rutgers Scarlet Knights
Not much was expected of Rutgers coming into the Big Ten Tournament. Rutgers earned its second and third* Big Ten Tournament victories in school history after knocking off Minnesota in the opening round and then Indiana on Thursday night. Corey Sanders, the heart and soul of this team scored 51 points in those two wins. Rutgers ultimately fell to Purdue in the third round Friday night. In the loss to the Boilermakers, Sanders was still good for 23 points, four assists and four rebounds.
*In 2017, Rutgers beat Ohio State in the opening round.
Miles Bridges, Michigan State
Michigan State’s leader and arguably most talented player had himself a nice couple of games in the Big Ten Tournament. In two games — first against Wisconsin and then against Michigan — Bridges combined to scored 37 points to go along with 16 rebounds. Miles Bridges has a big opportunity ahead of him come NCAA Tournament time to further improve his NBA Draft stock. The scouts will be watching.
Mo Wagner, Michigan Wolverines
Mo Wagner had himself a great Big Ten Tournament Madison Square Garden. Wagner was particularly good in games against the Nebraska Cornhuskers and Michigan State Spartans. In those two games, Wagner combined for 35 points and 21 rebounds. When the German stays out of foul trouble and can knock down shots from the 3-point line like he did in the final against Purdue, he’s a nightmare matchup. Michigan is a deep basketball team, and Mo Wagner’s backup Jon Teske had himself a career game in the Big Ten Tournament Final vs Purdue.
Tony Carr, Penn State
Tony Carr scored 25 points in each of Penn State’s first two tournament games against Northwestern and then Ohio State. In comparison to Carsen Edwards, Carr is slightly less explosive with fewer tricks in his bag, but Carr’s the more clutch player in bigger moments. Penn State has an outside shot to make the NCAA Tournament, but right now things aren’t looking too happy in Happy Valley.
Carsen Edwards, Purdue Boilermakers
Carsen Edwards scored 26 points against the surprising Rutgers Scarlet Knights in Purdue’s opening game. He followed that up with 27 points against Penn State in the semi-final on Saturday. In the final, Edwards did not look his usual self against a stout Michigan defense. He shot 4-16 from the field and missed several three-pointers that weren’t even close to going in.