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Game 10: No. 3 Ohio State 77, No. 2 Michigan 55

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Jared Sullinger scored 24 points to help No. 7 Ohio State defeat No. 10 Michigan 77-55 on Saturday in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals.

Deshaun Thomas scored 22 points and William Buford added 10 for the third-seeded Buckeyes (27-6), who advanced to play No. 8 Michigan State in the final on Sunday. Michigan State defeated No. 14 Wisconsin 65-52 in the other semifinal on Saturday.

Tim Hardaway, Jr., led No. 2 seed Michigan with 13 points, but he made just 3 of 10 shots. Trey Burke, Michigan's other star player, scored five points on 1-for-11 shooting and had eight turnovers.


Halftime Heroes

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Halftime.jpgAt this year's Big Ten Basketball Tournament, the Big Ten has partnered with the Wounded Warrior Project, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to honor and empower wounded warriors and make this the most successful, well-adjusted generation of veterans in our nation's history.

The Big Ten and WWP have been honoring our nation's wounded heroes from various branches of service, including the Marine Corps, Air Force, Army and Navy, having them attend games of both the women's and men's tournaments and be recognized at halftime.

Honored at halftime of the Michigan/Ohio State semifinal game were Corporal Timothy Studer and Corporal Joshua White of the United State Army, Sergeant Joshua Wathen of the United States Army Reserve, and United States Marine Corp Staff Sergeant Nick Bennett.

Thank you to these four soldiers and all the men and women who serve our country both here in the States and worldwide.

State Secrets?

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Trailing Ohio State 34-21 at halftime of in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals, Michigan headed to the locker room to discuss second-half adjustments. 

For a second there, Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo appears as if he is going in as well to help his in-state rival. 

Obviously, Izzo was just caught up in the crowd and veered out of line once the coast was clear. 

Izzo and the Spartans host the winner of Michigan/Ohio State for the Big Ten Tournament title on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. EDT.

Game 9: No. 1 Michigan State 65, No. 4 Wisconsin 52

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Box Score

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Draymond Green scored 14 points and had 16 rebounds Saturday to lead No. 8 Michigan State past No. 14 Wisconsin 65-52 in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals. 

It's the first time the Spartans (26-7) will play for the league's postseason title since 2000.

Next up is either No. 7 Ohio State or No. 10 Michigan, which both shared the regular-season title with Michigan State.

Wisconsin (24-9) was led by Jordan Taylor with 19 points and Ryan Evans with 18, but couldn't avoid their third loss of the season to the Spartans.

Michigan State rallied from a 20-9 first-half deficit to take a 35-25 halftime lead, then extended the margin to 19 early in the second half. It sealed the win with a late 13-2 run.

"The Game" on the Hardwood

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OSU Street Sign.JPGWill all signs lead to the Big Ten Tournament Championship for the Buckeyes?

We are underway in the second semifinal contest of the day, and just two hours away from learning whether Michigan or Ohio State will face Michigan State for the Big Ten Tournament Championship on Sunday.

This afternoon's contest will be the third time the two teams have faced each other this season.  OSU leads the all-time series against Michigan, 91-72, and a perfect 3-0 against the Wolverines in Big Ten Tournament play.

The Buckeyes beat No. 8 seed Michigan 72-62 in 2007 and 69-68 in 2010 and then the No. 4 seed Wolverines 68-61 last year.

This season the teams split their two contests, with each team picking up a home win.  Ohio State took a 64-49 decision on Jan. 29, while Michigan earned a 56-51 victory on Feb. 18.

Like Father, Like Son

| No Comments | No TrackBacks caught up with Greg and Grant Hixon of Springfield, Ohio, who were in attendance Saturday for the Ohio State/Michigan semifinal matchup of the 2012 Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament. 

The father-son combo, who favor Aaron Craft and Jared Sullinger, respectively, made bold predictions for the score. 

Grant predicts a close 77-67 OSU win, while dad believes (or is it hopes for) a 30-point win over the rival Wolverines is just a few hours away.

Standing Student Section

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During the second half of Saturday's first semifinal contest at the Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament, made the hike up to the balcony level where each of the four semifinalists are well-represented in the student section.

As Wisconsin rallied to bring cut the Michigan State deficit to six at 46-40, the Badger faithful was brought to its feet.

Across the court, the transported IZZONE were loud and proud after a Spartan 3-pointer, which brought the MSU lead back into double digits.

Michigan State defeated Wisconsin, 65-62, to advance to Sunday's Big Ten Tournament final.

Building Leaders, Honoring a Legend

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2012 BigTen M BBall 2346.jpg
In recognition of the Big Ten's leadership in fully integrating athletics into the academic mission of the its member institutions, the Indianapolis Big Ten Community Partnership initiated the Wayne Duke Postgraduate Award in 2008.

The Wayne Duke Postgraduate Award is named for the former Big Ten Conference commissioner who served from 191-89.  While leading the Big Ten, Duke spent much of his time working to improve academic standards and graduation rates for student-athletes.

During halftime of Friday's quarterfinal matchup between Michigan and Minnesota, Indiana swimmer Margaux Farrell (pictured) and Penn State gymnast Miguel Pineda were honored as the 2011-12 Wayne Duke Postgraduate Award winners. 

The award is an annual scholarship recognizing one male and female Big Ten senior student-athlete pursuing a postgraduate degree for achievements in academics, athletics, civic service and leadership.  Each Big Ten institution many nominate one male and one female student-athlete.  For 2012, each award is $5,000, which is made possible by donations form local corporations and individuals supporting collegiate student-athletes.

Gotta Look Good

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Apparel2012.JPGEach year one of the greatest sights at the Big Ten Tournament is the wide array of school colors that mix throughout the seats of Bankers Life Fieldhouse. 

With four games each on Thursday and Friday, it wasn't uncommon to see purple next to red, next to gold, next to green.

No matter your choice of school -- or color -- make sure you don't leave Bankers Life Fieldhouse without official Big Ten Tournament gear.  Shirts, pullovers, and hats of all sizes and colors are available on the concourse and at several sections throughout the venue. 

Semifinal Saturday

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104_0292.JPGIt's Semifinal Saturday at the 2012 Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament and for the first time ever, all top four seeds have advanced, which sets up a great day of basketball.

No. 1 Michigan State is set to do battle with No. 4 seed Wisconsin at 1:40 p.m. ET on CBS.  In the second semifinal, No. 2 Michigan will take on No. 3 Ohio State in the hardwood's version of the "The Big Game."

There are several ways to follow today's action. If you can't be here at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in person, be sure to tune into CBS or just follow along with LIVE STATS via the Gametracker links below.

If you're going to be away from your computer, you can follow @bigtenchamps on Twitter for scoring updates or join in on the conversation using hash tag #B1GTourney. Enjoy today's games!

Game 9: No. 1 Michigan State vs. No. 4 Wisconsin: 1:40 p.m. ET, CBS
Game 10: No. 2 Michigan vs. No. 3 Ohio State: Approx. 4 p.m., CBS