media source avatar
Big Ten CommunicationsPublished: 1/5/2024, Last updated: 3/15/2024
link picture

Big Ten Weekly Women's Basketball Central - Jan. 5-8

page picture





  • The first weekend of 2024 features five Big Ten Conference games, including three contests on the Big Ten Network (and the FOX Sports App). No. 4/3 Iowa heads to Rutgers on Friday at 6 p.m. ET and Purdue challenges Maryland on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. ET. Nebraska welcomes No. 14 Indiana on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET to wrap up the television schedule. This week’s remaining games will be streamed live on B1G+ (visit for more information).

  • Iowa senior Caitlin Clark was selected as one of five Ann Meyers Drysdale National Players of the Week by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) on Wednesday. It was her fourth time receiving the weekly honor this season. Clark led the Hawkeyes to a pair of wins over the holidays by averaging 35 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks. She also earned her 23rd Big Ten Player of the Week award, which tied for the most in conference history.

  • In its win over Michigan, Indiana became the first team since Jan. 8, 1999 to start a game 15-for-15, according to StatsPass. The feat was last achieved when Portland went 15-of-15 in the first half against Pepperdine.

  • Penn State head coach Carolyn Kieger picked up her 150th career win as her squad earned its largest Big Ten victory since the 2012-2013 season by defeating Northwestern, 95-55.

  • Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder recorded her 250th career Big Ten regular season victory as the Hawkeyes bested Michigan State, 76-73, on a buzzer-beater three from the logo by Caitlin Clark.

  • The Big Ten leads all Division I conferences with a remarkable nine schools among the top 40 in the latest NET rankings (including four in the top 20, second behind the Pac-12) – No. 8 Iowa, No. 13 Michigan State, No. 15 Indiana, No. 16 Ohio State, No. 24 Nebraska, No. 32 Penn State, No. 33 Maryland, No. 37 Michigan and No. 39 Minnesota. The NCAA Evaluation Tool (NET) is the primary sorting tool used by the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Committee for determining NCAA Tournament teams.

  • The Big Ten has five teams making an appearance in this week’s Associated Press (AP) Top 25 poll. In the latest media survey, Iowa remains at No. 4, Indiana moved up two spots to 14th and Ohio State dropped to No. 20. Michigan State and Michigan are receiving votes. 

  • The Big Ten has four programs in the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA)/USA Today Top 25 poll. Iowa checks in at No. 3, Indiana is up to 14th, Ohio State falls to No. 18 and Michigan is receiving votes.

  • Offensive production continues to be the story for the Big Ten Conference as 10 different schools (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio State and Penn State) have scored 100 points in at least one game this season. Six Big Ten teams are averaging more than 80 points per game and four of the national top 25 scoring offenses reside in the Big Ten, led by Michigan State (4th – 91.1), Iowa (7th – 89.8), Penn State (9th – 88.6), Maryland (25th – 80.9), Ohio State (26th – 80.9) and Indiana (29th – 80.5).

  • The Big Ten currently leads all Division I conferences in scoring (77.0 ppg), three-point percentage (.349), free throw percentage (.733) and assists (16.7 apg), while ranking second in field goal percentage (.458) among Autonomy Five conferences.

  • As of Friday, the Big Ten features some of the best shooting teams in the country with four programs among the top 20, including three in the top 10, in field goal percentage. Indiana paces the conference (4th – .515), followed by Penn State (5th – .512), Iowa (7th – .506) and Michigan State (11th – .493). Penn State is also efficient from beyond the arc, ranking second in the country with a .415 three-point percentage.

  • Big Ten teams have been passing the rock quite well this season as five programs rank in the top 30 in the country in assists, led by Michigan State (7th – 20.6), Indiana (11th – 19.8), Iowa (13th – 19.6), Penn State (19th – 19.1) and Northwestern (22nd – 18.7). A quartet of Big Ten players rank among the top 20 nationally in assists – Iowa’s Caitlin Clark (6th – 7.4 apg), Northwestern’s Caroline Lau (13th – 6.4 apg), Purdue’s Jeanae Terry (T20th – 5.9 apg) and Minnesota’s Amaya Battle (T20th – 5.9 apg).

  • Individually, Caitlin Clark (IOWA) leads the country in points (472), points per game (31.5) and assists (111). Serah Williams (WIS) and Julia Ayrault (MSU) are ninth (2.91) and 13th (2.57), respectively, in blocks per game. Kendall Bostic (ILL) is shooting 66.7 percent from the field to rank fifth in field goal percentage, followed by Mackenzie Holmes (IND) with a 66.4 clip to stand seventh and Hannah Stuelke (IOWA) at 65.8 percent to rank eighth. Mara Braun (MINN) has the second-best free throw percentage (93.6) in the nation.

  • The Big Ten has consistently ranked among the top three conferences in women’s basketball attendance for the past three decades and that trend has continued into the 2023-24 season. Currently, 11 Big Ten schools rank among the top 50 in the nation in average attendance, including six in the top 25, with both figures leading all Division I conferences. Iowa is second nationally in attendance (14,998 fans per game), followed by Indiana (6th – 8,974), Maryland (10th – 6,871), Ohio State (14th – 5,482), Nebraska (15th – 5,412) and Purdue (23rd – 4,826).

  • The Big Ten closed its non-conference slate with a combined 114-41 (.735) record. Among the 114 victories, five were over AP Top 25 opponents.

  • The 2023-24 schedule marks the most coverage on nationally distributed platforms in Big Ten women’s basketball history. Six Big Ten regular-season games will be televised on a broadcast platform, the most in conference history. NBC will televise its first-ever Big Ten women’s basketball game on Jan. 21 when Iowa visits Ohio State at 12 p.m. ET. Peacock carried its first Big Ten women’s basketball broadcast on Jan. 2, a thriller between Michigan State and Iowa.

  • No. 16/13 Ohio State claimed a landmark non-conference 78-58 win at No. 20/22 Tennessee. It was just the second time in Tennessee’s history that the Lady Vols have lost in Thompson-Boling Arena by at least 20 points. Ohio State is only the second Big Ten Conference program to defeat Tennessee in Knoxville, joining Indiana. It was the first time in conference history that the Big Ten has posted multiple wins over Tennessee in back-to-back years – Ohio State and Indiana both claimed victories over the Lady Vols during the 2022-23 season – and has won five of its last six matchups with Tennessee.

  • No. 21/19 Indiana secured an impressive non-conference 71-57 victory over No. 19/21 Tennessee on Nov. 23. It was the second time in as many years that the Hoosiers have bested the Lady Vols and the largest margin of victory (14) in the four-game all-time series. Last year’s Hoosier win was the first time a Big Ten Conference school defeated Tennessee in Thompson-Boling Arena. The matchup scored 1,118,000 viewers to rank as FOX’s most-watched women’s college basketball game ever and the most watched regular season women’s college basketball game on any network since last season’s 1,466,000 viewers for LSU vs. South Carolina on ESPN.