In a long, long list of tiebreakers — one I went through for far too long on Sunday evening after Michigan State locked up a share of the Big Ten regular-season championship — the Spartans are now, officially, the No. 1 seed for the Big Ten tournament that starts next week in Indianapolis.
Purdue’s victory over Penn State assured the top seeding, regardless of how the final week plays out.
Michigan and Ohio State still have a chance to capture a share of the championship as well. Ohio State must hold on to beat Northwestern and then knock off Michigan State on Sunday. Michigan needs the Ohio State win over MSU plus win its final two games, at Illinois and at Penn State.
The only certain thing so far is that Michigan State will play at noon on Friday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse against the winner of the 8/9 game. Who will that be? That’s still up in the air right. If it all ended now, it would be Northwestern vs. Iowa, but that could change with Illinois still in the mix.
Incidentally, the last time Michigan State was the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten tournament was in 2009. That run ended with a semifinals loss to Ohio State. The last time the Spartans won the Big Ten tournament? 2000 — also the last time the Spartans won the national championship.