They played 18 league games and couldn't settle it.
So let's settle it in Indianapolis.
The Big Ten Tournament starts there Thursday -- Will the city be over Peyton Manning by then? -- with four games that do not feature one of the three co-champions -- namely Ohio State, Michigan State and Michigan. The Buckeyes' victory at Michigan State on Sunday created the three-way tie for first. It also probably cost the Spartans a shot at a No. 1 seed, but they'll still get a two seed as long as they don't do something stupid in Indianapolis (like lose Friday to Illinois or Iowa).
What about Wisconsin and Indiana?
It honestly won't surprise me if either wins this event because both are legitimate Top 20 teams, too. That's why Friday's quarterfinals should be great and Saturday's semifinals greater. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. Thursday's first-round games provide some nice storylines, too.
Iowa (8) vs. Illinois (9): Each time I talk to somebody in basketball they ask me who's gonna get the Illinois job, which suggests nobody thinks Bruce Weber will coach in the Big Ten next season. And that's too bad. Weber is a good coach and a good man. But he stayed in one place too long, and now he's on his way out. He might beat Iowa on Thursday but he won't beat Michigan State on Friday.
Indiana (5) vs. Penn State (12): Indiana started the regular season as a borderline NCAA Tournament team and ended the regular season as a No. 4 seed, according to my colleague Jerry Palm. So that's a good season. It'll get better when the Hoosiers handle Penn State on Thursday. It'll get a lot better if the Hoosiers handle Wisconsin on Friday.
Northwestern (7) vs. Minnesota (10): A win here might be enough for Northwestern to secure its first trip to the NCAA Tournament. So win here, Northwestern. Just win here and make everybody (outside of Minnesota) happy. Tubby's been to enough NCAA Tournaments. It's your time, Wildcats. Don't screw this up.
Purdue (6) vs. Nebraska (11): The Boilermakers are in a strange spot. They could win this game and probably get off the 8-9 line for the NCAA Tournament or lose this game and definitely get off the 8-9 line for the NCAA Tournament. So what should they do? They should try to win, obviously. But a loss wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. An eight seed or a nine seed would be the worst thing in the world. That's all I'm saying.
-- By Gary Parrish