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Northwestern cracks the AP Top 25 for first time this season

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No. 24 in the nation, No. 1 in the Big Ten West

NCAA Football: Northwestern at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Northwestern football is one of the top 25 teams in the nation, according to the newest Associated Press (AP) poll released Sunday afternoon.

The Wildcats find themselves with the No. 24 ranking next to their name after defeating Iowa on Saturday and securing a place in the Big Ten title game. This ranking marks the first time the Wildcats have cracked the AP Top 25 this season.

Northwestern is one of four Big Ten teams featured in this week’s poll, along with Ohio State, Michigan and Penn State. NU is the only team from the West division to earn a spot in the rankings.

Penn State moved up five spots to No. 16 after its win over Wisconsin Saturday, and Michigan and Ohio State remained in the nation’s top-10 after convincing wins.

Michigan State and Iowa both dropped from the rankings.

The newly 24th-ranked Wildcats travel to Minnesota next Saturday for an 11 a.m. CT kickoff against a Golden Gopher team coming off its biggest win of the season against Purdue.