The Michigan Wolverines' week began with a scary plane crash in which luckily no one was hurt, and it ended with a Big Ten Tournament title on Sunday afternoon. Derrick Walton Jr. won the Big Ten Tournament MVP after scoring 22 points, giving his team their second win over Wisconsin in the past month, 71-56, in Washington D.C. The eighth-seeded Wolverines clinch an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, as they will battle Oklahoma State as a seven-seed on Friday afternoon. They won four in a row this week against Illinois, Purdue, Minnesota, and then the Badgers, for their first Big Ten title since 1998. Although, they had to vacate that win due to NCAA sanctions. D.J. Wilson added 17, while Zak Irvin scored 15, as Michigan shot 56 percent from the floor, including 10-of-23 from beyond the arc. Wisconsin shot just 39 percent on the game, scoring just 24 points in the second half, as they will face Virginia Tech as an eight-seed in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Kentucky Wins 30th SEC Tournament Title
The Kentucky Wildcats continued their SEC dominance in their school's history, as they clinched their third straight SEC Tournament title, and 30th all-time, with an 82-65 rout of Arkansas. De'Aaron Fox led thew way with 18 points, as the Wildcats won their 29th game of the year. They scored 13 straight points heading into halftime, holding a 16-point lead going into the locker room. The Razorbacks made six straight shots in the final minutes to pull within nine, but they could not complete the comeback. They fall to 1-6 in championship games, including losing twice to Kentucky in the past three seasons. Malik Monk helped Kentucky out to a quick start, as they didn't trail by more than two in the first half. Monk finished with 17 on the night. The Wildcats enter the NCAA Tournament as a two seed to battle Northern Kentucky on Friday night. The Razorbacks are in the same region, and will go against Seton Hall as an eight-seed.
SMU Records 30th Win With AAC Title
The 12th-ranked SMU Mustangs ended a very successful season with their 30th victory of the year, taking down No. 15 Cincinnati for the AAC Title, 71-56, on Sunday. Sterling Brown had 18 points, leading his team to their 16th straight victory heading into March Madness. Simi Ojeleye was named Tournament MVP, finishing with 14 points, as SMU records their second AAC Title in three seasons. They won the title in 2015, but was held out of last year's postseason due to NCAA sanctions. The Bearcats have been without a conference title since winning it all in Conference-USA back in 2004. Jarron Cumberland had 14 points to lead Cincy in the losing effort. The Mustangs began the season at 4-3, but have won 26 of 27 games to end the season at an impressive 30-4. Both teams will be a six-seed in the NCAA Tournament. SMU battles the winner of the Providence-USC game in the East Region, while Cincinnati goes up against the Kansas State-Wake Forest winner in the South Region.