Big Ten Daily (Jan. 26): Michigan State on Pace to Play This Week

We catch you up on all the latest news from Big Ten football and basketball on Tuesday, Jan. 26.
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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo met with the media Tuesday to discuss where his team is at health-wise.

The Spartans haven't played since Jan. 8 when they lost at home to Purdue. That team has dealt with COVID-19 issues, and they are still dealing with some issues.

Gabe Brown tested positive for COVID-19 last week, as did assistant coach Dane Fife, but Izzo said the team practiced on Monday with the players who were available.

Although the Spartans won't be at full strength, Izzo said the game against Rutgers on Thursday, Jan. 28, is still on.

Izzo expects to have 11 or 12 players available on Thursday at Rutgers, including Josh Langford because it will be his first day eligible to return to the court. Michigan State will also have Mady Sissoko make the trip to Piscataway as well.

The Spartans are currently 8-4 overall and 2-4 in the Big Ten.

Where Michigan Basketball Stands

It's been an eventful couple of days at the University of Michigan after the state recommended the athletic department shut down for two weeks after positive test results for the B.1.1.7 variant of COVID-19 were found within the department.

Yesterday, some Michigan athletes put out a statement on Twitter, asking for the decision to be reversed.

The Athletic's Brendan Quinn put out an article Tuesday explaining how all of the events occurred at Michigan starting on Saturday night.

Here's a snippet of the article, pertaining to Michigan's men's basketball team:

Of the many portraits of the pause at Michigan, the one inside an empty Crisler Center is perhaps most stark.

Michigan men’s basketball is a program with legitimate Big Ten title hopes and Final Four aspirations. It’s also a program that, according to a source, hasn’t had a positive COVID-19 test within its ranks since the summer. Sources told The Athletic that no current positive tests are attributed to the men’s basketball, women’s basketball or hockey teams.

From the top down, members of the men’s basketball program feel they’ve done everything possible to play their season as safely as possible. Not only that, they’ve managed to do so while putting together the pieces of what could be a memorable campaign. Michigan is 13-1 overall, alone in first place in the Big Ten at 8-1 and rose to No. 4 in the AP Top 25 poll on Monday following wins over Maryland and Purdue.

And now the Wolverines are on hold.

Program sources on Monday described Michigan players as being everything from “crushed” to “confused” to “upset.” 

To read the full article, CLICK HERE.

College Football Playoff Committee Announces New Members

On Tuesday, College Football Playoff executive director Bill Hancock announced the newest members to the CFP committee.

The CFP committee has appointed Kentucky AD Mitch Barnhart, NC State AD Boo Corrigan, Texas AD Chris Del Conte, former Nebraska lineman Will Shields and Virginia Union University AD Joe Taylor.

They replace Joe Castiglione, Ken Hatfield, Ronnie Lott, Todd Stansbury and Florida AD Scott Stricklin, whose terms have expired.

“Mitch, Boo, Chris, Will and Joe will continue the integrity that has been the committee’s hallmark through our seven seasons,” Hancock said in a statement. “Their knowledge, experience and character, along with their love of the sport of college football, will make the transition seamless.”

Iowa AD Gary Barta will stay on as the selection committee chair.

“We are pleased that Gary will return as chair,” Hancock said. “He was a valuable leader as the committee navigated a unique and challenging year. We look forward to him working with the other 12 members in what we hope will be a more traditional season in 2021.”

Many Indiana fans were frustrated at Barta after the Hoosiers didn't get selected for a New Year's Six Bowl this past season.

Indiana opens the season at Iowa on Sept. 4, 2021. Both teams are expected to be ranked in the preseason top 25.

Related Stories:

  • BIG TEN POWER RANKINGS: For Tom Brew's Big Ten basketball power rankings for this week, CLICK HERE.
  • HOW TO WATCH INDIANA 1976 TEAM GET INDUCTED TO HOF: Indiana's 1976 undefeated title team is getting inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame. CLICK HERE
  • MICHIGAN ATHELTES WANT TO PLAY: Michigan athletes want the decision to go on a two-week pause to be reversed. CLICK HERE