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The BSD Big Ten Power Rankings, Week 6

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So...Michigan might be good.

Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

LET'S RANK SOME BIG TEN TEAMS BASED ON POWER, Y'ALL.

Bill

  1. Ohio State (Last Week: 1)
  2. Michigan State (2)
  3. Michigan (4)
  4. Iowa (5)
  5. Northwestern (3)
  6. Penn State (8)
  7. Wisconsin (6)
  8. Indiana (7)
  9. Illinois (9)
  10. Minnesota (11)
  11. Nebraska (10)
  12. Rutgers (12)
  13. Purdue (13)
  14. Maryland (14)
The top of the conference is so hard to figure out. Based on what would happen if each team played one another on their best days, Ohio State is probably the best team in the Big Ten. If you go off of resume, it's Michigan. Michigan State is probably second to both teams in both categories. I don't know. I'll just say Ohio State is No. 1. This conference is so insane I hate it and love it.

The order that you put Iowa/Northwestern in can flip depending on the day, same with the order of Penn State/Wisconsin. Indiana/Illinois/Minnesota is basically the same way, and Nebraska is so incredibly hard to read, because this may be the most unlucky team in college football (its four losses are by a combined 11 points, which is so incredibly amazing).

The bottom three, however. Hoo boy. Rutgers is the most competent squad of the bunch, and with Leonte Carroo back, its season doesn't look nearly as bleak as the two teams below it. Purdue just lost to Minnesota at home by 28 after losing to Michigan State on the road by three, because nothing makes sense. Maryland, my goodness. Mike Locksley is its coach right now. Mike Locksley! Add in the fact that the Terrapins' defense is really bad and its offense is really, REALLY bad, and Maryland is easily the worst team in the conference. Of course, this naturally means that it's going to win its next game...wait, shit. That's against us isn't it? Dammit.

Nick

  1. Ohio State (1)
  2. Michigan State (3)
  3. Michigan (4)
  4. Iowa (5)
  5. Northwestern (2)
  6. Wisconsin (6)
  7. Penn State (7)
  8. Illinois (9)
  9. Minnesota (10)
  10. Indiana (8)
  11. Nebraska (11)
  12. Rutgers (13)
  13. Purdue (12)
  14. Maryland (14)
With another passing week, we gain a little more clarity on the Big Ten. This week, some new light was shed onto the Northwestern Wildcats. Their resume looks better each week, as Stanford and Duke continue to impress, but this recent loss to the Wolverines really puts into perspective the kind of game they need to play each week to continue their winning ways. Which they could totally do. The offense needs to improve though. On the flip side, I still need to see more from Michigan's offense before I anoint them the Big Ten's best team, like the rest of the country seems to be doing. They have an outstanding defense, but they haven't been in a game yet (aside from Utah) where they haven't had control over things from the first drive. I want to see this team handle some adversity.

Aside from that, it's pretty much business as usual. Ohio State and Michigan State remain unbeaten, Wisconsin bounced back from their Iowa loss with a win over the Huskers, and Iowa themselves kept on rolling. Penn State showed life on offense in dispatching Indiana, Illinois continues to compete each and every week and Minnesota finally looked like the team they were supposed to be, albeit against Purdue.

Indiana is in a very dangerous situation with their top two quarterbacks and star running back fighting with injuries, and they won't get far as long as those three are off the field. Nebraska is keeping games close, but needs to figure out how to actually win one. Rutgers looks like a different team with Carroo on the field. Purdue looked like Purdue. Maryland is being coached by Mike Locksley.

Matt

  1. Ohio State (1)
  2. Michigan State (3)
  3. Michigan (5)
  4. Iowa (4)
  5. Wisconsin (6)
  6. Northwestern (2)
  7. Penn State (7)
  8. Minnesota (11)
  9. Illinois (9)
  10. Indiana (8)
  11. Nebraska (10)
  12. Rutgers (12)
  13. Purdue (13)
  14. Maryland (14)

Well, the time has finally come to admit that Michigan is good. Three straight shutouts, and a convincing win over what I still think (for now at least) is a pretty good Northwestern team move the fighting Harbaughs up to #3 this week. Suffice to say, Saturday's meeting between Michigan and Michigan State has all sorts of intrigue.

Penn State stays at 7 for me, but the gap to #8 is pretty significant right now. The only argument I think anyone can make after 6 weeks is MAYBE ahead of Northwestern, but the Cats still have a good win over Stanford, and a road W at Duke, both of whom are better than any of PSU's 5 wins.

Minnesota's big win in West Lafayette restored some normalcy to the Gophers, and with Illinois and Indiana both dropping games this weekend, Minnesota moves back above them. Further down, Nebraska needs to figure things out, and fast, or Mike Riley could be out of Lincoln rather quickly.