Big Ten Conference men's basketball continues all month long with this week's featured game pitting the Purdue Boilermakers against the Illinois Illini. The Big Ten is loaded with talented teams this year, with five teams ranked in the top 25 in the country. Neither Purdue nor Illinois is ranked, but both have a legitimate shot at the NCAA's playoffs, attesting to the strength of the conference. Both teams started conference play strong, going 3-1 in their first four games with only Michigan State undefeated in the first three games. The fact that almost any team in the conference can beat another makes this game between two very similar squads an important step toward notching the necessary wins for a tournament bid. Purdue returns three seniors in point guard Lewis Jackson, Ryne Smith and long-time star Robbie Hummel, who is a fifth year senior after receiving a medical redshirt season. Hummel leads Purdue in scoring, averaging 16.2 points per game, while Jackson and Smith are both averaging 10 points per game. As for Illinois, junior D. J. Richardson leads the offense at 13.2 points per game while Meyers Leonard and Brandon Paul each chip in 12 points per game.
All times in GMT
09:00 & 18:00 February 16
College Men's Basketball: Big Ten, Purdue at Illinois