The final week of the regular season is finally here and Michigan is playing for a banner (7:00 p.m., ESPN). The Wolverines are a win away from clinching the league title on winning percentage and Illinois is the last team standing with a remaining shot at the league crown.
The Wolverines and Illini have been the two best teams in the league all season– the only two teams to outscore Big Ten opponents by more than 10 points per 100 possessions — and they’ll finally play their lone head-to-head game of the season. People will continue to discuss Michigan’s COVID-pause and resumption in the days and weeks to come. Still, if Michigan handles the Illini head-to-head, there’s not actually much drama about the Big Ten regular-season title race.
The Wolverines have only lost one game (without a starter) and a loss in Ann Arbor would be Illinois’ fifth defeat in league play. The lack of a compelling title race has far more to do with Michigan’s dominance than any scheduling or COVID quirks.