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Big Ten Power Rankings - Week 7

The calm before the storm

NCAA Football: Michigan State at Rutgers Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Hello there and welcome to the Big Ten Power Rankings! Each week we’ll rank how the teams across the conference are playing, in the hopes of seeing just who is a contender, and who is a pretender over the course of the season.

The rules are few, but resolute:

  • Teams are ranked by how they’re playing at that time. Not body of work, not rankings in the polls, but simply how each team is playing at that point in the season.
  • The approach to the rankings is not necessarily on the field results (though those do count, as an obvious, tangible data point), but more generally if the two teams played at a neutral site 100 times, which team would win 51 times (or more).
  • These rankings are subjective. As the author I get to follow the rules as closely or loosely as I want to, and if you don’t like the rankings, you’re wrong.

The seventh week of the 2023 season is in the books, and from here on out, things are going to get spicy. Let’s get to it!

1. Penn State

A 63-0 dismantling of UMass doesn’t tell us anything about this team we didn’t already know. This week’s game against Ohio State will.

2. Michigan

Yep, final form attained, as the Wolverines continue their roll, beating Indiana 52-7.

3. Ohio State

OSU is also looking solid, with a 41-7 win over Purdue this week. The East will come into some focus after this week’s game.

4. Iowa

Our first shakeup from last week has Iowa moving into the top 4 for the first time since week 2! The Hawkeyes defeated Wisconsin 15-6 without scoring a single touchdown! But with that win, they very much are the favorites to win the West. Can’t wait for these divisions to go away.

5. Rutgers

The Scarlet Knights rebounded with a 27-24 win over Michigan State, which included a huge fourth quarter rally. The game later this year between Rutgers and Maryland should be a fun one.

6. Maryland

Speaking of, Maryland had one of the biggest losses of the week, somehow losing to Illinois 27-24. Like the annual migration of the salmon of Capistrano, Maryland is winless in the month of October after starting undefeated in September.

7. Wisconsin

A tough loss to Iowa means that the Badgers now need help to get to Indianapolis.

8. Minnesota


9. Illinois

BIG win for the Illini, and not for nothing, a big win for Penn State. Depending on how the season shakes out, there’s a chance that the B1G East is decided by how each team’s western opponents did overall. The more wins Iowa, Illinois, and Northwestern can rack up, the better.

10. Purdue

A 41-7 loss to OSU is probably not how Boilermaker fans wanted their day to go.

11. Indiana

A 52-7 loss to Michigan is probably not how Hoosier fans wanted their day to go.

12. Nebraska


13. Northwestern

Idle, but managed to move up, a rare feat!

14. Michigan State

Woooooof. MSU had a fourth quarter lead on Rutgers and simply could not hold on to it. Things look bleak in East Lansing.

Ironic, you been sleeping on the squiggles that you been dreaming ‘bout.

Top three stay the same, with Iowa and Rutgers on the rise. Maryland and Wisconsin drop, while Minnesota idles. Illinois makes a big leap, while Purdue, Indiana, and Nebraska all take a dip. Northwestern rises from the ashes, with Michigan State taking up residence in the basement.

On to week 8!