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Around the Big Ten, Week 13: Rivalry Week

Ohio State won the game of the year, and the conference championship game is now set

NCAA Football: Michigan at Ohio State Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Every Sunday, after an entire Saturday’s worth of college football, we'll take a look around the Big Ten. As the conference as a whole fights as respectability in the non-conference, or as its power dynamics shift on a week-to-week basis in this fall, we'll follow every team and try to piece together the puzzle that is the 13-week-long season all the way up until Indianapolis.

Here are the top three storylines from Week 13:

No. 2 Ohio State beats No. 3 Michigan in a game for the ages

This game didn’t have a whole lot of offense, but it had everything else. College Gameday was in Columbus for The Game, and the Buckeyes (11-1, 8-1) pulled out a huge 30-27 win in double overtime over the Wolverines (10-2, 7-2). Ohio State kicker Tyler Durbin missed two field goals in regulation for Ohio State, and Michigan quarterback Wilton Speight threw two costly interceptions and fumbled a snap deep in Buckeye territory. J.T. Barrett’s legs ultimately got the Ohio State offense going, and after a controversial fourth down conversion in the second overtime, Curtis Samuel’s 15 yard run sealed the win — and likely a College Football Playoff berth — for the Buckeyes.

No. 7 Penn State earns a spot in the championship game

After Ohio State beat Michigan, the Nittany Lions (10-2, 7-1) controlled their own destiny, and earned a spot in the Big Ten Championship game by rolling Michigan State (3-9, 1-8) 45-12 in Happy Valley. Penn State trailed 12-10 at halftime, but outscored the Spartans 35-0 in the second half. Trace McSorley threw for 376 yards and four touchdowns in the win, and a date with Wisconsin in Indianapolis now looms.

No. 6 Wisconsin comes from behind to beat Minnesota

The Badgers (10-2, 7-2) already clinched a spot in the Big Ten championship game when Iowa beat Nebraska Friday, but they took care of business nonetheless by defeating the Golden Gophers (8-4, 5-4) 31-17 to retain Paul Bunyan’s Axe. The Badgers scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter and picked off Mitch Leidner four times in the victory.

Other games:

  • Iowa (8-4, 6-3) knocked off No. 16 Nebraska (9-3, 6-3) 40-10 in Iowa City on Friday, spoiling any chance the Cornhuskers may have had to reach the conference title game. Tommy Armstrong wasn’t 100 percent, so he didn’t have his usual explosiveness on the ground, and the Hawkeyes took advantage from start to finish. Leshun Daniels Jr. and Akrum Wadley combined for 263 yards on the ground for the Hawkeyes, and C.J. Beathard tossed three touchdowns in the blowout win.
  • Indiana (6-6, 4-5) became bowl eligible by squeezing past Purdue (3-9, 1-8) 26-24 despite three interceptions from Richard Lagow. David Blough had two picks himself, and the Hoosiers scored the first nine points of the fourth quarter to hold off the Boilermakers. Michigan State and Purdue finished with identical records this season.
  • Maryland (6-6, 3-6) also clinched bowl eligibility by beating Rutgers (2-10, 0-9) 31-13. The Terps rushed for 318 yards on the day, dealing Rutgers yet another blowout loss.