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Northwestern punches ticket with win at No. 7 Wisconsin

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I don’t know if Northwestern’s win on Sunday was the biggest win in the history of the program, but I cannot imagine that there has ever been one bigger.

The Wildcats went into Madison on Sunday evening and knocked off No. 7 Wisconsin, 66-59, to move to 19-6 on the season and 8-4 in the Big Ten, a record that is now impressive enough to lock Northwestern into the NCAA tournament.

That’s right.

The Wildcats are going to be dancing for the first time in program history barring catastrophe, and I’m not even sure Northwestern is capable of Northwesterning this. The way things currently stand, Northwestern has three top 50 wins and five more top 100 wins. Four of those eight top 100 wins are on the road – including at Wisconsin – and a fifth is a neutral court win over Dayton. Throw in the fact that Northwestern has just one sub-50 loss, which was to an Illinois team that looks worse on TV than it does in the RPI’s formula, and yeah, there is a lot to like about this profile.

The most impressive part of this win?

The Wildcats did it without Scottie Lindsey, their leading scorer. Lindsey had missed the previous two games, a 21-point whipping at Purdue and the loss to Illinois at home earlier this week.

There is a downside to this for the Big Ten, however.

The conference didn’t get a single team into the top 16 when the Selection Committee previewed the bracket over the weekend. No Wisconsin, no Purdue, no Maryland, and that was before the Badgers took this loss at home.

In fact, I’d go as far as to day that it is time to start being worried about Wisconsin. The Badgers were taken to overtime by Nebraska earlier this week, a week after they were taken to overtime by Rutgers and struggled to put away a struggling Indiana team at home.

Wins are wins in conference play, I get that, but when you consistently struggle to beat teams you should walk over, it’s not a great sign moving forward, especially when you consider this: Wisconsin’s best win this season is … at Indiana? At Minnesota or Marquette? Over Georgetown or Tennessee in Maui? Syracuse when Syracuse was still a disaster?

That’s a problem, one that could end up causing the Badgers to get a seed much closer to last year’s No. 7 seed than you would expect for the No. 7 team in the AP poll.

VIDEO: Jay-Z’s nephew posterizes nation’s No. 1 recruit Marvin Bagley III

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Nahziah Carter is an unsigned 6-foot-6 wing in the Class of 2017.

He’s also Jay-Z’s nephew, and he just so happened to posterize Marvin Bagley III — the clearcut No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2018 — while Hova was in the stands watching him.

NCAA denies extra-year request by NC State guard Henderson

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The NCAA has denied North Carolina State guard Terry Henderson’s request for another year of eligibility.

Henderson announced the decision Friday in a statement issued by the school.

The Raleigh native played two seasons at West Virginia before transferring to N.C. State and redshirting in 2014-15. He played for only 7 minutes of the following season before suffering a season-ending ankle injury.

As a redshirt senior in 2016-17, he was the team’s second-leading scorer at 13.8 points per game and made a team-best 78 3-pointers.

Henderson called it “an honor and privilege” to play in his hometown.

SMU gets transfer in Georgetown’s Akoy Agau

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SMU pulled in a frontcourt player in Georgetown transfer Akoy Agau, a source confirmed to Agau is immediately eligible for next season as a graduate transfer.

The 6-foot-8 Agau started his career at Louisville before transferring to Georgetown after one season. Spending two seasons with the Hoyas, Agau was limited to 11 minutes in his first season due to injuries. He averaged 4.5 points and 4.3 rebounds per game last season.

Coming out of high school, Agau was a four-star prospect but he’s never lived up to that billing in-part because of injuries. Now, Agau gets one more chance to make a difference as he’s hoping to help replace some departed pieces like Ben Moore and Semi Ojeleye.

South Carolina loses big man Sedee Keita to transfer

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South Carolina big man Sedee Keita will transfer from the program, he announced on Friday.

The 6-foot-9 Keita was once regarded as a top-100 national prospect in the Class of 2016, but he never found consistent minutes with the Gamecocks for last season’s Final Four team.

Keita appeared in 29 games and averaged 1.1 points and 2.0 rebounds per game while shooting 27 percent from the field.

A native of Philadelphia, Keita will have to sit out next season before getting three more seasons of eligibility.

Although Keita failed to make an impact during his only season at South Carolina, he’ll be a coveted transfer thanks to his size and upside.

Mississippi State losing two to transfer

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Mississippi State will lose two players to transfer as freshmen Mario Kegler and Eli Wright are leaving the program.

Both Kegler and Wright were four-star prospects coming out of high school as they were apart of a six-man recruiting class that is supposed to be a major foundation for Ben Howland’s future with the Bulldogs.

The 6-foot-7 Kegler was Mississippi State’s third-leading scorer last season as he averaged 9.7 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. Kegler should command some quality schools on the transfer market, especially since he’ll still have three more years of eligibility after sitting out next season due to NCAA transfer regulations. Kegler’s loss is also notable for Mississippi State because it is the second consecutive offseason that Howland lost a top-100, in-state product to transfer after only one season after Malik Newman left for Kansas.

Wright, a 6-foot-4 guard, was never able to find consistent minutes as he was already behind underclass perimeter options like Quinndary Weatherspoon, Lamar Peters and Tyson Carter last season. With Nick Weatherspoon, Quinndary’s four-star brother, also joining the Bulldogs next season, the writing was likely on the wall that Wright wasn’t going to earn significant playing time.