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Big Ten tournament heads back to the Midwest in 2019

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The Big Ten made waves when they announced that their conference tournament would be moving to Washington D.C.’s Verizon Center in March of 2017, but the move east won’t last long for the league.

On Thursday, the Big Ten announced that the United Center in Chicago and Bankers’ Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis would once again host the league tournament between 2019 and 2022, with Chicago getting the nod in the odd years and Indy in the even years.

So for those scoring at home, the future of the Big Ten tournament looks like this:

  • 2015: Chicago
  • 2016: Indianapolis
  • 2017: DC
  • 2018: Undecided
  • 2019: Chicago
  • 2020: Indianapolis
  • 2021: Chicago
  • 2022: Indianapolis

What will be interesting is to see where the Big Ten tournament ends up in 2018, as the Chicago Tribune is reporting that commissioner Jim Delany has targeted Madison Square Garden in New York City. The Big East has a long contract with MSG for their league tournament, which would mean that the Big Ten would have to be flexible with their dates, but it’s clear that with the expansion of the conference to the east coast — remember, Maryland and Rutgers are now B1G members — that Delany is making a push that direction.

Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament chances take a major blow in loss to No. 16 SMU

SMU guard Nic Moore (11) shoots over Gonzaga forward Kyle Wiltjer (33) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
(AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
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Nic Moore scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and added 11 assists as No. 16 SMU knocked off Gonzaga in Moody Coliseum on Saturday night, 69-60.

The Zags got 20 points and 16 boards from Domantas Sabonis, but Kyle Wiltjer scored just four points and shot 2-for-17 from the floor.

It wasn’t pretty.

And it may have been the end of Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament hopes.

Entering Saturday, the Zags had an RPI in the mid-60s, enough to keep them in the bubble conversation but not enough to make them anything more than a team that will be projected to end up on the cut-line.

The issue is a complete lack of quality wins on their résumé. Gonzaga beat UConn in the Bahamas. That’s a borderline top 50 win. They beat Washington, another borderline top 50 win. Beyond that? They swept Pepperdine, beat Tennessee and own a win over Montana. None of those are top 100 wins, and that’s why the SMU game was such a big deal. The Mustangs are a top 25 team. This was a road game. This win was the kind of thing that the Zags could pin at the top of their profile.

But Wiltjer didn’t show up, the Zags had no answer for Moore and they’ll head back to Spokane needing, in all likelihood, to win the WCC’s automatic bid if they want to dance.

POSTERIZED: Cal’s Jaylen Brown has his dunk contest entry

California's Jaylen Brown lays up a shot against Oregon State in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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Cal picked up a big win over Oregon State in Haas Pavilion on Saturday night, and the exclamation point was this emphatic dunk from Jaylen Brown: