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College Basketball World Reacts To The Big Ten's Disappointment

E.J. Liddell of Ohio State drives to the hoop.

WEST LAFAYETTE, INDIANA - MARCH 19: E.J. Liddell #32 of the Ohio State Buckeyes goes up with the ball in the first half against the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles in the first round game of the 2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Mackey Arena on March 19, 2021 in West Lafayette, Indiana. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

The Big Ten was the best conference in college basketball during the regular season. That's what all of the analytics said, anyway.

The NCAA Tournament selection committee clearly felt similarly, as the Big Ten was rewarded with nine selections and several top seeds.

The Big Ten had two No. 1 overall seeds in Michigan and Illinois, two No. 2 seeds in Ohio State and Iowa and a No. 4 seed in Purdue. Only two of those top 16 seeds are left, though.

Ohio State and Purdue were eliminated in the first round in major upsets, while Illinois lost on Sunday in the second round.

The Big Ten still has five teams left in Michigan, Iowa, Wisconsin, Rutgers and Maryland, but it's been a rough tournament so far.

It's tough to judge a conference based on its performance in a wildly variant single-elimination tournament. But, at the same time, this is a league that hasn't won a championship in men's basketball since 2000. This was supposed to be the year the streak ended - and it still could end - but it's not looking good right now.

If someone like Michigan or Iowa ends up winning it all, maybe this is all an overreaction. But, for now, the Big Ten is deserving of some skepticism when it comes to being the top conference in the country.