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The BSD Big Ten Power Rankings, Week 5

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Who is the best team in the Big Ten well guess what it's you.

Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports

We know nothing.

WE KNOW NOTHING.

WE KNOW NOTHING.

The Big Ten is super weird this year. Trying to rank the teams from best to Maryland is difficult, because no team wants to truly establish itself as the best team in the conference. Or the second best team. Or the third best team. Or the fo...you get the point.

Anyway, here is this week's edition of Nick, Matt and I making guesses based on the fact that nobody knows anything.

Bill

  1. Ohio State (Last Week: 2)
  2. Michigan State (1)
  3. Northwestern (3)
  4. Michigan (4)
  5. Iowa (6)
  6. Wisconsin (5)
  7. Indiana (9)
  8. Penn State (8)
  9. Illinois (11)
  10. Nebraska (7)
  11. Minnesota (9)
  12. Rutgers (12)
  13. Purdue (14)
  14. Maryland (13)
Our fun little ranking tool doesn't let us do ties, but I really want to do a tie for No. 2 between Sparty and NU. Both teams are awesome, and it's a shame they don't play one another. The same goes for Iowa and Michigan: those teams are on the same level, in my opinion, and while it's unfortunate they don't play one another, at least Michigan gets Northwestern and Michigan State in each of the next two weeks, so odds are the Wolverines will either separate themselves or take a big step back.

Ohio State is still probably the best team in the conference, I guess. Indiana is right on Wisconsin's heels and pretty comfortably ahead of Penn State, if only because its loss to the Buckeyes – which, don't get me wrong, is a really flawed team right now – is more impressive than any win that either team has (plus if PSU or UW were to play Indiana I think the Hoosiers would give them fits and probably win...oh, wait).

Nebraska is bad, Illinois is bad but not as bad (we'll learn a lot about them over the next two weeks), Minnesota is afraid of playing offense, Rutgers is a tire fire that didn't fall this week because it didn't lose to its bye, Purdue is an even larger tire fire (although credit to them for giving Michigan State fits for a third straight year), and Maryland is a blazing inferno the likes of which mankind has never seen this week.

Nick

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

Similar to Bill and Matt, I have some big shakeups in my rankings this week. The Big Ten is nonsensical right now (as is the rest of the country), so it's hard to really get a feel for how good these teams actually are. That being said, these are power rankings, so I'm ranking them based on how good I think they are right this second.

Ohio State retains the number one spot. I know they almost lost to Indiana, but I was impressed with Indiana in that game, so I can't fault the Buckeyes too much. Plus, when push comes to shove, they'd still beat anyone in the conference one-on-one. Northwestern slides up to number two, because frankly, they're doing what good teams are supposed to do. They're statistically one of the best defenses in the country, and they're rolling right now. Michigan State is still a good team, but having to hold onto a victory against Purdue is grounds to drop down a spot.

Iowa goes ahead of Wisconsin by virtue of beating the Badgers, plus I love CJ Beathard. Wisconsin is still a solid team though, and will be there near the top of the B1G West in the end. Penn State goes to number seven, because even if it was ugly, they still won without their top two running backs, starting safety and starting linebacker. This week's game against Indiana will provide clarity on who deserves to be ranked higher among the two.

Minnesota and Nebraska drop because they are bad and should feel bad. Purdue moves up, Rutgers stays put and Maryland retakes the #14 crown. Congratulations all around.

Matt

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

Perhaps I am guilty of giving Ohio State too much credit for what they did a year ago, but until they lose, or someone else blows me away, they're #1. It's getting tougher to ignore Northwestern though. Stanford is a great win, and going to Duke was impressive as well. We'll learn a lot more about the Wildcats this weekend in Ann Arbor. Iowa is a solid 4th with a nice win in Madison.

Speaking of Michigan, Maryland is a mess, but back to back shutouts have them slowly rising above the rest of the league, and ahead of the crowd gathering behind them. That includes our Nittany Lions, who move up, mostly by default.

At the bottom. Minnesota's close wins finally caught up with them in spectacular fashion against Northwestern, while Purdue playing MSU close gets them above Randy Edsall's mess at Maryland.