Shift again at the top after MSU loss



What a wild week in the Big Ten once again. Two ranked teams went down and no longer are there any unblemished teams in the conference.

For the second time this year, you can thank Purdue for the latter, as the Boilermakers shocked a Michigan State team that perhaps was feeling a little too high after coming back to beat rival Michigan last week. Meanwhile, newly-ranked Minnesota fell to a scrappy Illinois team that just continues to upset teams it has no business beating — but this time in regulation.

Michigan and Ohio State handled business while Wisconsin routed Rutgers. Iowa survived Northwestern and Penn State handled Maryland.

With that in mind, here are our latest power rankings after Week 10.

PREVIOUSLY: Big Ten power rankings after Week 9


What Jim Harbaugh said after Michigan football beat Indiana

Rutgers Scarlet Knights (4-5)

(AP Photo/Noah K. Murray)

The good news? Rutgers ran above Wisconsin’s average allowed. The bad news? It looked like the Rutgers of old, not in a good way.

The Badgers stymied the Scarlet Knights at every turn, and while Rutgers managed 3.2 yards on the ground, they only got 112 yards passing and 95 yards rushing in a 52-3 blowout loss at home. Rutgers is regressing, and even though it has a better record than teams like Indiana, a blowout of these proportions deserves the bottom spot.

Indiana Hoosiers (2-7)

Photo: Isaiah Hole

Make no mistake — Indiana doesn’t deserve to move up, but it didn’t get blown out the same way Rutgers did. Everything was inept for the Hoosiers as they played true freshman, and third-string quarterback Donaven McCulley on Saturday. But the Michigan defense punished Indiana early and often in a game that wasn’t even as close as the 29-7 score appeared.

Northwestern Wildcats (3-6)

Photo: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

Northwestern actually does deserve to move up a spot after playing Iowa tough in a 17-12 loss. Third-string quarterback Andrew Marty had a similar game to the other quarterbacks, tossing for 270 yards, but threw one touchdown to three interceptions vs. the stellar Iowa defense. The Wildcats also held the Hawkeyes to under 400 yards of total offense but 185 yards allowed on the ground, along with the turnovers, were NU’s undoing.

Maryland Terrapins (5-4)

Photo: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland continues to fall apart, this time losing 31-14 to Penn State. Taulia Tagovailoa continued to play well, throwing for 371 yards with a touchdown and an interception against the Nittany Lions at home, but the Terps also allowed Sean Clifford to throw for 363 yards and three touchdowns. The defense held the run game, and the numbers across the board were about even, but Maryland is in dire straits as it needs just one win to make a bowl game.

Nebraska Cornhuskers (3-6)

Photo: Barbara J. Perenic-The Columbus Dispatch

Nebraska lost by more than one score this time, but barely, in another game it had opportunities to win, but found ways to lose instead. The Huskers allowed 405 passing yards to C.J. Stroud, but special teams helped lose the game for the gritty, but losing team. Chase Contreraz was 1-for-3 in field goal kicking, which allowed Ohio State to ice the game with a late field goal of their own.

Nebraska is a team no one wants to play, but is sure to make enough costly mistakes to lose games.

Illinois Fighting Illini (4-6)

Photo: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

What even is this Illinois team? Just when you think it’s the Big Ten’s doormat, it finds ways to win against teams it has no business beating. This time around, it was ranked Minnesota, who was finally getting some love from the College Football Playoff committee.

The Illini passing game was non-existent and Chase Brown managed 147 yards, but the big story of the game is that Minnesota’s usually stellar run game was anemic on Saturday.

You know that Illinois will likely lose to teams it’s even with but win against others that it shouldn’t. With two games left, could it win out and become bowl eligible after all? Against Iowa and Northwestern, there’s no counting out the Illini.

Minnesota Golden Gophers (6-3)

Photo: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Just when you think you have a finger on what Minnesota is, it goes out and loses a game inexplicably. P.J. Fleck just signed a seven-year contract extension this week and lays an egg, immediately.

Tanner Morgan threw for 180 yards and two interceptions while the run game got nothing going, only managing 89 total yards. The College Football Playoff ranking is assuredly going by the wayside now that the Gophers have three losses, but this still could be a nine-win team though it appears unlikely with Iowa and Wisconsin still on the schedule.

Penn State Nittany Lions (6-3)

Photo: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

While yes, good win over a Maryland team with a winning record, the pass defense and run game continue to be major concerns for the Nittany Lions. Jahan Dotson has 11 catches for 242 yards while Sean Clifford passed for 363 yards and three touchdowns. However, they only managed 93 yards rushing against a porous defense, which doesn’t bode well with Michigan up next.

Iowa Hawkeyes (7-2)

Photo: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

Iowa did just enough to beat Northwestern, 17-12, in a game where the Wildcats nearly came back despite a 14-3 deficit. Alex Padilla relieved an injured Spencer Petras early in the game and he managed it effectively. But Tyler Goodson and the run game were the real story, managing 185 yards on the ground collectively as a unit. The pass defense continues to hurt the Hawkeyes a bit, as they allowed 270 yards to Andrew Marty and co., but they did manage three interceptions in the game.

Purdue Boilermakers (6-3)

(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

You might as well start calling West Lafayette upset city, because for the second time this year, Purdue took down a top three team.

This time, it was Michigan State, a team that the Boilermakers were uniquely qualified to beat given its stellar passing game and defense as a whole. Aidan O’Connell passed for 536 yards and three touchdowns as Purdue didn’t even try to run the ball. Likewise, it held Kenneth Walker III to 146 yards, but only one touchdown. Payton Thorne did manage 276 yards passing, but the Boilermakers negated that by slicing through the Spartan defense like a hot knife through butter all game, handing MSU its first loss of the season.

Wisconsin Badgers (6-3)

Photo: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

This is the Wisconsin we’ve been waiting to see — even if it is against Rutgers.

The Badgers celebrated their newfound place in the College Football Playoff rankings by routing the Scarlet Knights, 52-3, in a game where Rutgers could do nothing offensively while Wisconsin finally found an offense. Between Graham Mertz and Chase Wolf, the passing game managed 270 yards with three touchdowns to two interceptions while the run game amassed 305 yards.

Wisconsin is the team in the west to best and if it can handle business against Northwestern, Nebraska, and Minnesota, it’ll be in Indianapolis in December, once again.

Michigan Wolverines (8-1)

Photo by: Isaiah Hole

It wasn’t pretty, given the style of play and rash of injuries, but Michigan simply handled Indiana as only Ohio State has done this year (the Buckeyes blew the Hoosiers out, but that’s another matter). The Wolverines dominated from start to finish, with the defense being the star of the show, allowing just 195 yards of offense to IU. Hassan Haskins carried the load with Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards injured, rushing 27 times for 168 yards in the 29-7 win.

Up next is Penn State. If Michigan can handle business in Happy Valley, it’ll enter The Game in the final week of the regular season, most likely, with just one loss.

Michigan State Spartans (8-1)

(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

The king is dead — long live the king.

Michigan State had but one week of Big Ten supremacy after the come-from-behind win over Michigan last week, which got it ranked all the way up at No. 3 in the College Football Playoff rankings. However, it was short-lived after the trip to West Lafayette.

The Spartan offense could not out-duel Purdue, a team that had already taken out the former No. 2 Iowa earlier in the year. Kenneth Walker III managed 146 yards, and Payton Thorne tossed for 276 yards himself, but with the MSU defense allowing Aidan O’Connell to amass 536 yards through the air, there was no way that Michigan State would leave West Lafayette unblemished. It still has Ohio State in two weeks and Penn State the week after that.

Ohio State Buckeyes (8-1)

(AP Photo/Rebecca S. Gratz)

Though Ohio State got the win on Saturday, it more so moves into the top spot again because Michigan State lost — not because the Buckeyes earned it. As Nebraska tends to do, it hung around with chances to win, but politely declined at every turn. The offense was anemic by Ohio State standards, with the rushing game only managing 90 yards — though C.J. Stroud did throw for 405 yards in the game. However, he threw two interceptions to go along with his two touchdowns.

The defense was solid, but not spectacular. It’s a bit of a worry that Ohio State appears to be regressing the past two games with Purdue, Michigan State, and Michigan up next.








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