March 2, 2010
Hey Wildcat Fans!
At the conclusion of this past week, we wrapped up our "second season." Having played all of our nonconference (first season) and conference regular season games (second season) we head into our "third season"-- postseason play. We finished our second season 7-11. Although it was not as successful as our first season of non-conference play, where we went 9-2, I still think it was successful. Last year we only won three total games during conference play, which means we doubled last year's total wins. We also ended up in a three-way tie for 8th place in the Big Ten, improving from last year's standings as well. Our total record thus far is 16-13 guaranteeing NU's first winning season since 1996-97. I am glad that we are able to send our seniors out on such a great note with the accomplishments we have already achieved this season as a team.
On Wednesday, we head down to Indianapolis for the Big Ten Tournament and on Thursday, we face off against Michigan. We have beaten Michigan twice during conference play by only four points in both contests. With both games being so close and it being the third time we play them, it is going to take a tremendous team effort to pull out a win. If we win the first game it will be the first time 2000 that Northwestern will make it past the first round. The game is on at 11 a.m. on the Big Ten Network so if you can, check it out by tuning in.
The Big Ten Tournament is a special and unique event. In one weekend, all 11 teams will be at the same tournament staying in the same city in a single elimination competition. There are many things that are unique about this experience. Starting off, we play in the Conseco Fieldhouse, the Pacer NBA and Fever WNBA arena. It is special that we get to play on a professional court. Two years ago we were also in their locker rooms, which are HUGE. Another part of the tournament atmosphere that I think is cool is that Indianapolis renames the streets downtown after individual teams. I don't know any other city that would embrace the Big Ten like Indianapolis does. Most importantly, however, is the opportunity that this tournament gives to the teams. If your team wins the Big Ten Tournament you will automatically get a bid to play in the NCAA Tournament. With our record right now, we will not make the NCAA tournament unless we win the Big Ten Tournament this weekend. We will need to string together four wins in four days. We cannot look at the big picture at this point. We need just take one game and one day at a time!
Please cheer us on as we compete in the Big Ten Tournament!
Until next time,