The Big Ten suffered big losses in the first two rounds of this year’s NCAA tournament.
The conference was rated as the toughest in Division I basketball in 2021 with Illinois (No.2), Michigan (No.4), Ohio State (No.7) and Iowa (n ° 8) all ranked in the top 10 of the last. AP Top 25 poll. So it was rather shocking to see half of these teams lose in the first and second rounds of March Madness.
No loss was more shocking than that of the state of Ohio; the Buckeyes, sixth seed in the tournament, lost a stunner to Oral Roberts, 15 Seed in the first round, becoming just the ninth 2 seed to endure such indignity. But they weren’t alone: 4-seeded Purdue also lost to 13-seeded North Texas, and 11-seeded Michigan State lost their first game to UCLA.
Then, on Sunday, Illinois became the first seed to lose in the NCAA tournament, being manipulated by an eight-seeded Loyola Chicago team that, in retrospect, may have been ranked too low. After the loss to the Illini, only 1-seeded Michigan, 2-seeded Iowa, 9-seeded Wisconsin, and 10-seeded Maryland and Rutgers remained in contention.
Illinois Junior Guard Ayo Dosunmu – a selection of the first Sporting News All-America team – and second-year center Kofi Cockburn – a second-team selection – have been less than effective in their exit. Dosunmu scored just nine points on 4 of 10 shots, while Cockburn scored 21 points and nine rebounds.
But Twitter is not often a place for rational dialogue. The frenzied masses saw another Big Ten team lose and beat the conference after its top-rated team pulled out early.
Awaiting Sister John’s open letter to the Loyola fan base stating that Loyola is the rightful Big Ten champion.
– Nicole Auerbach 😷 (@NicoleAuerbach) March 21, 2021
The Big Ten had five of the top 16 seeds in the 2021 NCAA tournament. Two remain: Michigan and Iowa.
– Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) March 21, 2021
The Illinois State finalist isn’t as impressive as the Big Ten finalist, but at least the banners match.
– Chris Balas (@Balas_Wolverine) March 21, 2021
Illinois have now failed to reach the Sweet 16 for the 15th consecutive season. But congratulations on your fake Big Ten regular season title and heavily worded letters. ✌🏼
– Wolverine Corner (@WolverineCorner) March 21, 2021
The media kept the Big Ten teams ranked high after battling just to be exposed by the middle majors in March …
– pinto (@ pinto479) March 21, 2021
If Illinois hadn’t been so obnoxious in destroying the legitimacy of Michigan’s Big Ten, I wouldn’t be happy about the loss. But they did … pic.twitter.com/xh46hugu7Y
– Michael Spath (@MichaelSpathITH) March 21, 2021