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Big Ten Basketball Power Rankings: Week 19 Edition

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Final Big Ten Power Rankings of 2013-14

Michigan Wolverines
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten regular season has finally come to an end and it's time to start looking toward the conference tournament this weekend. Before we can speculate which teams in the conference will or won't be in the NCAA Tournament, we have to watch the conference's teams fight for a guaranteed spot with a conference tourney win.

Let's take a look at the 2013-14 season's final Big Ten power rankings.

12. Purdue Boilermakers (15-16, 5-13)

Purdue
Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

12. Purdue Boilermakers (15-16, 5-13)

Purdue
Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

Since starting the season 15-10 with an outside chance at making a run at the NCAA Tournament, the Boilermakers have dropped off the map, losing six straight games and falling to 15-16.

Last week: 11
This week: vs. No. 24 Ohio State(23-8)

11. Northwestern Wildcats (13-18, 6-12)

Northwestern
David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

11. Northwestern Wildcats (13-18, 6-12)

Northwestern
David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Northwestern has the worst overall record in the conference, but the Wildcats are no easy victory. However, a victory over Purdue on the road last week vaulted them out of last place and ended a seven-game slide.

Last week: 12
This week: vs. Iowa(20-11)

10. Penn State Nittany Lions (15-16, 6-12)

Penn State
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

10. Penn State Nittany Lions (15-16, 6-12)

Penn State
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Penn State has been near the bottom of the Big Ten for most of the season. However, the inconsistent consistency that the Nittany Lions have experienced has kept them out of last place in the standings and my power rankings.

Last week: 10
This week: vs. Minnesota(19-12)

9. Indiana Hoosiers (17-14, 7-11)

Indiana
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

9. Indiana Hoosiers (17-14, 7-11)

Indiana
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana had a great chance to upset Michigan on the road -- a win that could have immensely helped its NCAA Tournament hopes. The Hoosiers would be higher in my power rankings with a win there, but they haven't won three games in a row since November.

Last week: 7
This week: vs. Illinois(18-13)

8. Illinois Fighting Illini (18-13, 7-11)

Illinois
Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

8. Illinois Fighting Illini (18-13, 7-11)

Illinois
Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois began the Big Ten season as sorry as any team in the conference and were looking like the laughing-stock of the league. However, since starting the conference season 3-10, the Illini have won four of five. If it weren't for a devastating blowout loss at home on senior night, this team would be higher.

Last week: 8
This week: vs. Indiana(17-14)

7. Minnesota Golden Gophers (19-12, 8-10)

Minnesota
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

7. Minnesota Golden Gophers (19-12, 8-10)

Minnesota
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota is the Big Ten's dark-horse contender to make it to the NCAA Tournament. The Golden Gophers are young and talented, but have not won two straight games since Jan. 8.

Last week: 7
This week: vs. Penn State(15-16)

6. Iowa Hawkeyes (20-11, 9-9)

Iowa
Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

6. Iowa Hawkeyes (20-11, 9-9)

Iowa
Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Since starting the season 15-3, the Hawkeyes have gone 5-8, including losses in five of their last six games. The Hawkeyes have not won three straight games since Jan. 19 and are in desperate need of a string of wins.

Last week: 4
This week: vs. Northwestern(13-18)

5. Ohio State Buckeyes (23-8, 10-8)

Ohio State
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

5. Ohio State Buckeyes (23-8, 10-8)

Ohio State
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

It took a huge home win against No. 22 Michigan State on senior day to put the Buckeyes back into the Top 25. If this team is going to make a run in March, it's going to have to find a consistent scorer on offense -- LaQuinton Ross might just be that guy.

Last week: 6
This week: vs. Purdue(15-16)

4. Michigan State Spartans (23-8, 12-6)

Michigan State
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

4. Michigan State Spartans (23-8, 12-6)

Michigan State
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan State finally got Branden Dawson back a few games ago and it's starting to look like the Spartans are gelling as a team. While they lost to the Buckeyes on Sunday afternoon, the Spartans looked much better than they had in a month and it could mean a big run in March.

Last week: 5
This week: vs. winner of Iowa/Northwestern

3. Nebraska Cornhuskers (19-11, 11-7)

Nebraska
Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

3. Nebraska Cornhuskers (19-11, 11-7)

Nebraska
Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Nebraska has been the conference's biggest surprise team this season. Not many people gave the Cornhuskers any chance to lock up a first-round bye in the Big Ten tourney, much less finish 19-11. The Cornhuskers are 10-2 in their last 12 games thanks to the strong play from Terran Petteway.

Last week: 3
This week: vs. winner of No. 24 Ohio State/Purdue

2. Wisconsin Badgers (25-6, 12-6)

Wisconsin
Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

2. Wisconsin Badgers (25-6, 12-6)

Wisconsin
Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin began the season 18-0 and people were talking about how the Badgers might run away with the Big Ten title, but conference play brought them back down to earth as they lost five of six games following the hot start. However, people wrote them off and they responded, winning eight of nine.

Last week: 1
This week: vs. winner of Minnesota/Penn State

1. Michigan Wolverines (23-7, 15-3)

Michigan Wolverines
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

1. Michigan Wolverines (23-7, 15-3)

Michigan Wolverines
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan ran away with the Big Ten regular season title, but many people have questioned whether or not this team is built for a tournament run like last year's team was. Although the Wolverines aren't very deep, those who do play are very talented and trustworthy.

Last week: 2
This week: vs. winner of Indiana/Illinois

Connor Muldowney is a columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also reach him at connor.muldowney@rantsports.com.