Despite an underwhelming performance against Maine on Saturday, Northwestern didn't get punished by the pollsters. The Wildcats stayed put at 16th in the Coaches Poll and moved up one spot to 17th in the AP Poll. In a relatively lackluster week, most teams stayed where they were — the top 14 in the AP Poll and the top 13 in the Coaches Poll were entirely unchanged — but NU benefited from Michigan's top outing against UConn. The Wolverines dropped to one spot behind the Wildcats in each poll.
Michigan struggled more than NU did this weekend — the issue was never really in doubt for the Wildcats like it was for the Wolverines — but this week's rankings go to show that if you have an underwhelming game on a regional network, but aren't nearly upset, then you aren't likely to drop in the polls. However, if you struggle in the national spotlight like Michigan did — especially two weeks in a row — you're bound to drop.
NU isn't likely to be in the top 15 by the time Ohio State comes to town, but if the Buckeyes beat Wisconsin next week, it should still be a top 5 vs. top 20 matchup. In fact, it's not too likely the Wildcats will move at all, considering who the teams around them are playing, though you never know in college football.