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Big Ten Power Rankings - Week 8

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Avert your eyes

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 23 Ohio State at Indiana Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

No, really, avert your eyes. This is going to be the ugliest power ranking you’ve ever seen.


1. Ohio State

OSU continues its march to the playoffs, taking down Indiana 54-7. Remember how Penn State did against the Hoosiers? 24-0, in case you’d forgotten. How’s an extra 30 points against Indiana sound to you?

2. Michigan

A top team from the East was in a dogfight with a bottom team from the West, but ultimately overcame adversity and won, 33-7. Must be nice!

3. Michigan State

BYE week for the Spartans.

4. Wisconsin

The Badgers put a hurting on an upstart Purdue squad, just a week after the Boilermakers beat Iowa. Wisconsin won 30-13, and could make a run for the West crown after a shaky start to the season.

5. Iowa

BYE week for the Hawkeyes.

6. Minnesota

Look, Minnesota is going to have to live with the black eye that is the Bowling Green loss. But the put a hurting on a not-bad Maryland squad 34-16, in what could be the second biggest win in the B1G this weekend. The West has a few teams that will make the race to Indianapolis interesting.

7. Indiana

The Hoosiers appear to be broken at this point, unable to muster much resistance on either side of the ball. They’ll hope for bowl eligibility at this point.

8. Purdue

A week after one of the top wins of the 2021 season, and Purdue was soundly derailed by Wisconsin. I still like them to be chaotic going forward, but again, bowl eligibility will be the main goal for the Boilermakers.

9. Maryland

After a stellar September, the Terrapins are now winless in October. Yikes.

10. Northwestern

The Wildcats gave Michigan a fight, but ultimately couldn’t pull off the upset.

11. Nebraska

BYE week for the Cornhuskers.

12. Rutgers

BYE week for the Scarlet Knights.

13. Illinois

The Fighting Illini took Penn State’s best shot, went down 10-0, and then fought their way back into the game. They never gave up despite some questionable officiating, forced overtime, and then came away with a historic 20-18 win after nine (!!!!) overtimes. Tip of the cap to Bret Bielema and his crew, they earned the win.

14. Penn State

Then there’s the Nittany Lions. Just a couple weeks ago, Penn State was up 17-3 on the road at Kinnick Stadium over a top 3 Iowa squad. Then Sean Clifford and PJ Mustipher got hurt, and suddenly the Lions look absolutely listless. And here’s the thing - Clifford was clearly not 100% against the Illini, and suffered hit after hit. You expect me to think he’ll be in better shape to play against Ohio State?

No, I fully expect him to be worse, and if there are no other QBs on the roster good enough for the starting gig, how do you expect me to think that PSU beats ANYONE left on the schedule? Illinois was the last “sure” win on the schedule. There’s a real possibility that Penn State doesn’t get to bowl eligibility after starting 5-0 on the year.


Squiggly lines. Yay.

Ohio State and Michigan stay steady at the top, while Michigan State and Wisconsin move up. Iowa hangs out at #5, with Minnesota hot on their heels. Indiana, Purdue, and Maryland are all coasting along hoping to get to bowl eligibility on the season. Northwestern, Nebraska, and Rutgers bump up, while Illinois pulled one of the biggest upsets of the season. Penn State, by virtue of their head-to-head loss to the previous worst team in the conference is now officially the worst team in the conference.