Feb. 25, 2007
PARK RIDGE, Ill. - The field has been set for the 2007 Big Ten Women's Basketball Tournament presented by Xbox 360, which will take place at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Ind., March 1-5. For the first time in the 13-year history of the Big Ten Tournament, a team will enter the event as the top seed for the third-straight year. Ohio State (26-2, 15-1 Big Ten), which has won the outright conference title the past two seasons and shared the championship with Michigan State in 2004-05, earned its third consecutive No. 1 seed.
Purdue (25-5, 14-2) repeats as the No. 2 seed for this year's event after the second-seeded Boilermakers fell to the top-seeded Buckeyes in last year's tournament championship game, 63-60. The No. 3 seed was awarded to Michigan State (22-7, 13-3), while the fourth seed was garnered by Illinois (18-10, 8-8), which earned its best seed since the Fighting Illini were the No. 4 seed in 2000.
The fifth, sixth and seventh seeds were determined Sunday by a tiebreaker as Minnesota, Penn State and Wisconsin all finished conference play at 7-9. Penn State (14-15, 7-9) earned the fifth seed by way of producing the best winning percentage between the three teams in head-to-head competition. The Lady Lions won their lone game over the Badgers and split the two-game set with the Golden Gophers this season for a combined 2-1 record. Minnesota (15-14, 7-9) is the sixth seed in the tournament as a result of its 2-2 record versus those two teams, while Wisconsin (18-11, 7-9) was given the No. 7 seed with its combined 1-2 record against those foes.
A tiebreak was also needed for the eighth and ninth seed with Indiana (17-12, 6-10) and Iowa (14-15, 6-10) both finishing 6-10 in Big Ten play. And while both teams will meet each other in Thursday's opening-round nightcap, Iowa was awarded the No. 8 seed due to the Hawkeyes' regular-season win over the Hoosiers in their lone meeting.
Prior to the Indiana/Iowa matchup in Thursday's third game, No. 10 Michigan (10-19, 3-13) will open the tournament against the seventh-seeded Badgers at 3 p.m. ET. Minnesota and No. 11 Northwestern (8-21, 2-14) will meet in the event's second contest on Thursday, which will follow 25 minutes after the conclusion of the first game.
The winner between the Badgers and Wolverines will face No. 2 Purdue in Friday's first contest at Noon ET. Following that game, No. 3 Michigan State will face the Minnesota/Northwestern victor in the final game of session two. The tournament's third session begins at 6 p.m. ET with the Buckeyes facing the winner of Indiana and Iowa, and the evening will conclude with the No. 4/5 game featuring the Illini and Lady Lions.
Since the first Big Ten Tournament in 1995, six teams have captured postseason titles with Purdue's five wins (1998-99-2000-03-04) leading the way. Iowa (1997-2001) and Penn State (1995-96) have each won the tournament twice, while Michigan State and Ohio State earned their first Big Ten Tournament title in 2005 and 2006, respectively. Indiana tied Purdue's 1998 squad as the lowest seed to win the event when the No. 5 Hoosiers defeated Penn State in the 2002 final for their lone title.
The 2006 tournament attendance of 38,638 and session average of 7,728 were both event records in the tournament's history. The previous marks of 37,635 and 7,527 were set in 2004. The single-session record of 9,417, which was set in 2004, still stands. The five most recent editions of the women's tournament have posted the highest attendance in the event's history, surpassing the 30,000-patron mark each year. Single-session ($12-16) and all-session ($65) tickets can be purchased at all Ticketmaster outlets, including the Conseco Fieldhouse box office, Ticketmaster charge-by-phone numbers (317-239-5151 in central Indiana) and www.ticketmaster.com.
The following attachments presents the bracket with teams, dates, times and television.