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Big Ten Power Rankings: Week 9

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In the first edition of the College Football Playoff Rankings, the Big Ten saw one team (No. 3 Ohio State) in the playoff with No. 7 Michigan State and No. 9 Iowa also in the mix. As it stands, it's pretty clear one of those teams will make the College Football Playoff. The Big Ten and SEC are tied with three teams each in the Top 10, but the SEC edges out the Big Ten in the total number of teams in the Top 25 with six compared to the Big Ten's five (No. 17 Michigan and No. 21 Northwestern). It's clear, especially in the case of Michigan and Northwestern (two of the six teams with two losses to be in the rankings) that the committee is valuing high-quality non-conference wins and opponents. Northwestern beat now-No. 11 Stanford and Duke and the Wolverines lost a close game at now-No. 12 Utah and beat Power Five teams in Oregon and BYU.

Here's how our staff values those Big Ten teams, and more, in our Week 10 Big Ten Power Rankings:

1

Ohio State Buckeyes

RECORD: 8-0 (4-0)  ||  LAST WEEK: 1
The defending national champs are slotted at No. 3 in the initial College Football Playoff Rankings.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

2

Michigan State Spartans

RECORD: 8-0 (4-0) ||  LAST WEEK: 2
The Spartans can't get caught looking ahead to the looming matchup with Ohio State on Nov. 21.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2

3

Michigan Wolverines

RECORD: 6-2 (3-1) ||  LAST WEEK: 3
A close call against Minnesota wasn't encouraging, but Jim Harbaugh's still throwing out crazy life lessons, which is good. For everyone.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
3 3 4 4 3 3 4 3 4 4 3.44

4

Iowa Hawkeyes

RECORD: 8-0 (4-0) ||  LAST WEEK: 4
Iowa controls its own destiny when it comes to making the College Football Playoff.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
4 4 3 3 4 4 3 4 3 3 3.56

5

Wisconsin Badgers

RECORD: 7-2 (4-1)  ||  LAST WEEK: 5
Wisconsin showed some more offensive potency, eclipsing 24 points for the first time in Big Ten play. The Badgers hung 48 on Rutgers.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
5 5 5 5 5 5 6 5 5 5 5.11

T-6

Northwestern Wildcats

RECORD: 6-2 (2-2)  ||  LAST WEEK: 6
The Wildcats had a bit of fun during the bye week.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
7 7 6 7 6 7 5 7 6 7 6.44

T-6

Penn State Nittany Lions

RECORD: 7-2 (4-1)  ||  LAST WEEK: 7
Penn State's 39-0 destruction of Illinois was impressive.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
6 6 7 6 7 6 7 6 7 6 6.44

8

Illinois Fighting Illini

RECORD: 4-4 (1-3)  ||  LAST WEEK: 9
Illinois hasn't won a game in a month.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
9 9 8 8 9 9 9 8 8 9 8.56

9

Minnesota Golden Gophers

RECORD: 4-4 (1-3) ||  LAST WEEK: 10
A good showing against Michigan ended with a gutsy call.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
11 8 9 10 8 10 8 10 10 10 9.33

10

Nebraska Cornhuskers

RECORD: 3-6 (1-4)  ||  LAST WEEK: 8
It's been a rough year for Nebraska and a 55-45 loss to Purdue is just another chapter in a bad first season for Mike Riley.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
8 10 10 9 12 8 10 9 9 8 9.44

11

Indiana Hoosiers

RECORD: 4-4 (0-4)  ||  LAST WEEK: 11
Indiana could pose some problems for undefeated Iowa this weekend.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
10 12 12 11 10 11 12 11 11 11 11.11

12

Purdue Boilermakers

RECORD: 2-6  (1-3)  ||  LAST WEEK: 14
Purdue snapped a five-game losing streak with its win over Nebraska.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
12 13 11 13 11 12 11 12 12 12 11.89

13

Rutgers Scarlet Knights

RECORD: 3-5 (1-4) ||  LAST WEEK: 12
This pretty much sums it up from Rutgers blog On the Banks: "Rutgers has a bad defense. Rutgers has bad special teams. Rutgers has bad coaching."
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
13 11 13 12 13 13 13 13 13 13 12.67

14

Maryland Terrapins 

RECORD: 2-6 (0-4)  ||  LAST WEEK: 13
Maryland's schedule hasn't done the team any favors this year. The last five games (all losses): at West Virginia, vs. Michigan, at Ohio State, vs. Penn State, @ Iowa. The next two: vs. Wisconsin, at Michigan State. Yikes.
Henry Bushnell Josh Rosenblat Zach Pereles Josh Burton Martin Oppegaard Lyndsey Armacost Ian McCafferty Sam Brief Zach Wingrove Tristan Jung AVERAGE
14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14