Purdue Boilermakers favored to win the 2023 Big Ten Conference Tournament
If there’s any 2023 conference tournament you can count on to deliver, it’s definitely the Big Ten’s in Chicago, Illinois. The Big Ten has been one of the deepest conferences in all of college basketball this season, with there being 12 teams that are currently over the .500 mark. The amount of teams the conference will have in March Madness could push double digits, and that’s why you can expect some highly competitive basketball at the United Center. If you’re looking to bet on some futures for this tournament, we have you covered here. With that said, keep reading for our darkhorse pick, players to watch and best bet to win the Big Ten tournament. The Iowa Hawkeyes were the ones that one last year’s tournament, but they’ll have their work cut out for them if they want to win back-to-back titles.
How to Watch the Big Ten Conference Tournament
When: March 8-12
Where: United Center in Chicago, Illinois
Format: Seeding based on record in conference; top-10 seeds get a bye in the opening round; top-four teams receive a double bye
Watch: BTN, CBS, Paramount+; Championship Game on CBS/Paramount+ on Mar. 12 at 3:30 p.m. ET
Big Ten Conference Bracket
Big Ten Conference Tournament Seeds, Teams and Odds
1. Purdue Boilermakers (+160)
2. Northwestern Wildcats (+900)
3. Indiana Hoosiers (+550)
4. Michigan State Spartans (+600)
5. Iowa Hawkeyes (+1600)
6. Maryland Terrapins (+700)
7. Illinois Fighting Illini (+1200)
8. Michigan Wolverines (+1800)
9. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (+2000)
10. Penn State Nittany Lions (+2500)
11. Nebraska Cornhuskers (+25000)
12. Wisconsin Badgers (+6000)
13. Ohio State Buckeyes (+6000)
14. Minnesota Golden Gophers (+100000)
Favorite To Win Big Ten Conference Tournament
Purdue has a weapon unlike any other in the country: Zach Edey. The 7-foot-4 center is a walking 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Boilermakers, and he puts up his numbers efficiently — while not being a liability in any facet of the game. Purdue finished atop this conference largely because of his contributions on both ends of the floor. The Boilermakers also have all sorts of talented players around Edey, with a good mix of youth and veterans. One can argue that the only thing standing in Purdue’s way is Indiana, which happens to be a bad matchup for the Boilermakers.
Big Ten Conference Tournament Darkhorse
The Big Ten is so deep that you can essentially take your pick as far as darkhorses go, but one that stands out a bit more than others is Rutgers. Steve Pickiell is one of the most underrated coaches in all of college basketball, and he deserves a ton of credit for what he has done with one of the toughest jobs on the planet. This will be the Scarlet Knights’ fourth winning season in a row, and this year’s team has the potential to do some serious damage in March. Rutgers is fourth in the nation in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency, making this one of the hardest teams in the country to play against. The team will just need somebody to rise to the occasion offensively in this tournament. The Scarlet Knights are a deep, balanced team, but they will need one of their perimeter players to really become a go-to option down the stretch. Clifford Omoruyi’s play in the paint won’t be enough.
Players to Watch in Big Ten Conference Tournament
When you’re talking about the best players in this conference, you have to start with Purdue’s Edey. This 7-foot-4 mountain of a man is averaging 21.9 points, 12.8 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game. His size makes him impossible to guard around the basket, where he happens to have excellent touch. His play is directly responsible for the season the Boilermakers have had, as his presence also makes life a lot easier on his teammates. They constantly get great looks because of the attention he commands.
Indiana’s Trayce Jackson-Davis is a veteran at this point, and the senior is averaging 20.5 points, 11.0 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 2.8 blocks per game. He does absolutely everything that the Hoosiers ask of him, and he’ll definitely want to find a way to go out a champion.
Iowa’s Kris Murray is the brother of Sacramento Kings rookie Keegan Murray, who was a consensus first-team All-American last year. The junior is exceptional in his own right, averaging 20.5 points, 8.0 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and 1.0 steals per game this season. He’s just not as much of a sniper as his brother was.
Boo Buie is probably the best guard the conference has to offer, as he has turned into a microwave scorer for Northwestern. His emergence has helped the Wildcats take things to another level, and he’ll be a tough guy to guard on a big stage like this.
There’s also Terrence Shannon Jr., who transferred from Texas Tech to Illinois. The wing has been as advertised since arriving in Champaign. He’s a dynamic athlete that impacts the game on both ends of the floor, and he has all the makings of a great NBA player somewhere down the line.
Betting Pick to Win The Big Ten Conference Conference Tournament
It’s a little hard to come up with reasons not to pick the Hoosiers to win this tournament. Head coach Mike Woodson is 3-1 against Purdue since taking over his alma mater, so we know Indiana has what it takes to prevail if these programs end up facing one another. Also, in addition to having a do-it-all big man like Jackson-Davis in the mix, Indiana also has an emerging star in freshman Jalen Hood-Schifino. The mid-range assassin scored 35 points in a road win over the Boilermakers on February 25, and he should be in for a massive week in Chicago. Indiana is also an extremely balanced team, with the Hoosiers being 30th in the nation in KenPom’s adjusted offensive efficiency rankings and 46th in adjusted defensive efficiency. Being dependable on both ends of the floor is key. On top of that, the Hoosiers are 21st in the nation in three-point shooting percentage. Shooting well from deep gives you a chance against anyone.