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Deep field could mean big thrills in Big Ten tournament, with five ranked teams leading way

The Big Ten tournament starts Thursday and it's not hard to see why Michigan State coach Tom Izzo declared it one of the best ever.

And by best ever, he didn't just mean best Big Ten tournament. Izzo says it could be "one of the great conference tournaments of all time."

The league is tops in the Sagarin ratings and boasts five teams ranked in the Top 25, including four in the top 10.

One of those top 10 teams — No. 6 Michigan — didn't even get one of the four first-round byes. Instead, the Wolverines face Penn State on Thursday after falling a point short of sharing the conference championship with a 72-71 loss to Indiana on Sunday.

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