Big Ten Women's Basketball Weekly Release - Feb. 23

Feb. 23, 2010

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Danilsa Andujar, Indiana

Danilsa “City” Andujar is one of two players from the Sunshine State on the IU roster. The Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., native is bilingual and has played for the Dominican Republic Junior National Team. City, which has been her nickname since her freshman year of high school, is a name that was given to her because she was tall like a building in the city,  and the name stuck.

Jockeying for Position
Ohio State has already clinched its sixth consecutive Big Ten title, as well as its sixth straight No. 1 seed in the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament. Behind the Buckeyes, several more conference squads are still fighting for prime seeds in the tournament, held March 4-7 in Indianapolis. Michigan State has a one-game hold on second place with a 10-6 record, while Purdue and Wisconsin are tied for third at 9-7. Iowa and Penn State sit in a tie for fifth at 8-8, each vying for a top-five position in order to secure a first-round bye in the tournament.

What If?
If the 2010 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament started today, Ohio State and Michigan State would hold the top two seeds, respectively. Purdue would claim the No. 3 seed by virtue of its win over the Buckeyes on Jan. 25. The Badgers would hold the No. 4 seed, followed by No. 5 Penn State. The Lady Lions hold the tiebreaker over the Hawkeyes by sweeping the season series. Following No. 6 Iowa would be No. 7 Northwestern. The three-way tie for eighth would be broken with Michigan as the No. 8 seed, Minnesota as the No. 9 seed and Indiana at No. 10. Illinois would be the No. 11 seed. Full tiebreak information can be found on Page 3 of this release.

Big Ten Celebrates Black History Month
Throughout the month of February, the Big Ten will commemorate the achievements of African-Americans on Big Ten campuses with feature stories on its Black History Month website. Among the former student-athletes to be recognized are seven women’s basketball players. Tuesday, the Big Ten honors Indiana two-sport athlete Whitney Thomas. After making her mark on the Hoosier basketball program, the Bloomington native played one season of volleyball and has now returned to hardwood as a student assistant coach.

Never Before
Illinois and Minnesota each recorded their sixth conference wins of the year on Sunday, giving every Big Ten squad at least six conference victories for the first time in history. Never before had every Big Ten squad recorded five or more conference wins. In addition, every Big Ten team has at least 13 overall wins, which is also a conference first. Prior to this year, never before had every Big Ten team posted 10 overall wins in a season. The Big Ten is the only conference in the nation with all its teams at or above 13 wins on the year and at or above six conference wins on the season.

Welcome to the Block Party
Big Ten teams and players have set several marks for blocked shots over the past week. Michigan State’s Allyssa DeHaan became the NCAA’s all-time leader last Thursday with a career total of 487. DeHaan swatted three Sunday against Ohio State, bringing her total to 490, making her the NCAA’s leader by one block over current St. Mary’s junior Louella Tomlinson. Last Thursday, Iowa set a program high with 13 blocks against Minnesota, while Hawkeye freshman Morgan Johnson set a school record with eight swats of her own. Finally, on Sunday, Illinois broke its team record for blocks in a season with 158, topping the old mark of 156 set in 2007-08.

Big Ten Report Card
The Big Ten continues to boast one of the strongest RPI rankings in the nation, remaining the only conference in the country to place all its teams within the RPI’s top 90. In addition, no other conference places all of its teams within the top 100. No. 10 Ohio State continues to lead the Big Ten, followed by No. 16 Michigan State and No. 29 Wisconsin. Penn State made the conference’s largest leap, jumping eight spots, while Illinois and Northwestern both improved six places from last week’s report.

Michigan State and Wisconsin are on the verge of becoming the second and third Big Ten teams with 20 wins this season, each with 19 so far. The Spartans are looking for their seventh straight 20-win season, while the Badgers are seeking their first since 2006-07. The Big Ten has had at least three 20-win teams every year since 1999-00, including a record-tying six 20-win teams last season.

Still Streaking
Ohio State’s Jantel Lavender continues to claim the longest double-digit scoring streak in the nation. The junior tallied 24 points against Michigan State on Sunday, increasing her streak to 96 games, which spans the entire length of her career. Penn State’s Tyra Grant boasts the second-longest active streak in the conference, having posted double-digits in her last 38 games, dating back to last season, most recently with a 25-point performance against Michigan last Thursday.