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Big Ten Bradley-Terry Projections: Post-Week 8


Previous projections: pre-conference, post-Week 5, post-Week 6, post-Week 7

Full national rankings: here

We have our first official elimination from the Rose Bowl hunt: the 0-fer Gophers could still theoretically wind up in an 11-way tie at 4-4, but the first tiebreaker that would apply - overall record - would eliminate them. At this point, I believe everyone else - even 0-3 Indiana - is still mathematically alive, though the series of events that would be required is too bizarre even for a Les Miles fever dream. Realistically, it's a four-way race among MSU and the trio of one-loss (in conference) teams that are not named Purdue.

MSU survived a scare from Northwestern; combined with Iowa's loss, the basic wins-and-losses only method thinks an MSU share of the title is already a virtual lock and the Spartans are heavy favorites to stay unbeaten. The margin-aware method is somewhat less certain (and didn't think highly of MSU's narrow escape over Northwestern nor did it heavily penalize Iowa for losing by 1) but still thinks that at minimum, an MSU share of the title is highly likely.

Basic Method (W-L only)

TeamBT WPctAverage wins8-07-16-25-34-43-52-61-70-8
MSU 0.9781 7.85 85.71% 13.73% 0.54% 1 in 14,900 1 in 7.76M N/A N/A N/A N/A
Wisconsin 0.9408 6.67 N/A 70.13% 26.46% 3.25% 0.16% 1 in 34,400 N/A N/A N/A
Ohio St 0.9093 6.31 N/A 44.99% 42.10% 11.90% 1.01% 1 in 10,800 N/A N/A N/A
Illinois 0.7926 5.1 N/A N/A 33.24% 46.02% 18.28% 2.41% 0.05% N/A N/A
Iowa 0.8285 5.06 N/A 2.14% 25.19% 51.68% 18.91% 2.05% 0.04% N/A N/A
Michigan 0.7574 3.33 N/A N/A 0.96% 9.79% 31.94% 38.28% 16.70% 2.33% N/A
Purdue 0.4728 3.01 N/A 1 in 42,700 0.18% 3.49% 21.37% 47.26% 27.70% N/A N/A
Penn St 0.5698 2.6 N/A N/A 0.03% 1.49% 13.82% 38.03% 35.93% 10.70% N/A
Northwestern 0.5385 2.56 N/A N/A 0.09% 1.97% 13.24% 35.35% 36.84% 12.52% N/A
Indiana 0.4474 1.46 N/A N/A N/A 0.05% 1.53% 11.80% 32.85% 38.08% 15.69%
Minnesota 0.0944 0.06 N/A N/A N/A N/A 1 in 74.4M 1 in 122k 0.12% 5.79% 94.09%

 

As before, the big shiny zero in the loss column causes these ratings to really like MSU; Wisconsin beating Iowa didn't hurt any (it makes the Spartans' best win look even better and simultaneously makes their remaining schedule look easier). Illinois's substantially easier finishing schedule relative to Iowa gives them a narrow edge in the standings; the win by Missouri over Oklahoma makes their non-conference loss look even less damaging. An extra win in the bank and an easier finishing schedule almost lets Purdue jump Michigan despite an incredible gap in the ratings, but Michigan remains ahead.

Since Indiana and Minnesota don't play each other, there is a 14.76% chance of dueling 0-8s.

This week's games (as always, home field is not considered):
Northwestern @ Indiana: Northwestern 59% to win
Purdue @ Illinois: Illinois 81% to win
Michigan State @ Iowa: Michigan State 90% to win
Michigan @ Penn State: Michigan 70% to win
Ohio State @ Minnesota: Ohio State 99% to win

Bowl chances:
Already eligible: MSU, OSU, Wisconsin
Already invited to the Queso Bowl: Minnesota
Illinois: 1 in 200 chance of failing to reach a bowl
Iowa: 1 in 2800 chance of failing to reach a bowl
Michigan: 1 in 43 chance of failing to reach a bowl
Purdue: 1 in 4 chance of reaching a bowl
Penn State: 8 in 15 chance of reaching a bowl
Northwestern: 7 in 8 chance of reaching a bowl
Indiana: 6 in 13 chance of reaching a bowl

Conference title simulations:

Champions or co-championsCount
MSU outright 8749
MSU-OSU-Wisc 410
MSU-Wisc 404
MSU-OSU 170
Iowa-MSU-Wisc 146
Iowa-MSU 61
Wisc outright 17
OSU-Wisc 16
Iowa-Wisc 12
OSU outright 7
Iowa outright 3
Iowa-MSU-OSU-Wisc 3
Iowa-MSU-OSU 1
Ill-MSU-Wisc 1
MSU outright or shared 9945
Wisc outright or shared 1009
OSU outright or shared 607
Iowa outright or shared 226
Ill shared 1

 

Nothing really surprising here (apart from the one wacky simulation that led to an Illinois-MSU-Wisconsin tie at two losses each, with Iowa and Ohio State both sitting at 3 or more!). At least five out of 10,000 runs show nobody ending with even one loss (an Iowa-OSU tie can't happen at 7-1 because somebody has to lose the Iowa-OSU game, nor can any Illinois involvement since they've already dropped two). In the ties shown, known tiebreaker winners are bolded (I assumed that the Iowa-MSU ties were all at 7-1, rather than at 6-2 with an MSU win over Iowa and two losses elsewhere with everybody else going into chaos mode).

Margin-Aware Method

TeamBT WPctAverage wins8-07-16-25-34-43-52-61-70-8
MSU 0.9704 7.61 62.72% 35.57% 1.69% 0.02% 1 in 2.32M N/A N/A N/A N/A
Wisconsin 0.9170 6.69 N/A 71.94% 25.37% 2.59% 0.10% 1 in 69,800 N/A N/A N/A
Ohio St 0.9684 6.53 N/A 57.49% 38.50% 3.92% 0.10% 1 in 353k N/A N/A N/A
Iowa 0.9442 5.63 N/A 11.29% 43.14% 42.65% 2.87% 0.06% 1 in 442k N/A N/A
Illinois 0.8345 5.47 N/A N/A 54.37% 38.34% 6.88% 0.41% 1 in 18,400 N/A N/A
Michigan 0.7023 3.08 N/A N/A 0.23% 4.67% 25.53% 45.10% 21.84% 2.64% N/A
Purdue 0.3016 2.78 N/A 1 in 336k 0.04% 1.15% 12.95% 48.75% 37.12% N/A N/A
Penn St 0.5341 2.75 N/A N/A 0.02% 1.06% 17.02% 44.34% 31.19% 6.36% N/A
Northwestern 0.4011 2.19 N/A N/A 1 in 17,500 0.29% 4.84% 28.06% 46.90% 19.90% N/A
Indiana 0.3032 1.23 N/A N/A N/A 1 in 19,400 0.36% 6.86% 29.10% 43.15% 20.53%
Minnesota 0.0867 0.03 N/A N/A N/A N/A 1 in 1.09B 1 in 1.21M 0.03% 2.95% 97.02%

 

MSU's rating actually came down slightly as the win over Northwestern was substantially closer than projected; Notre Dame's FAIL against Navy did some damage as well. Here Iowa is rated much, much higher than in the wins-and-losses-only system; with losses by 1 and 7 points and a blowout of a team that just beat Texas, Iowa looks pretty solid. With Minnesota's games against the bottom half all done, a 1-11 finish is all but a foregone conclusion; their individual game win percentages at this point are 0.29% against MSU, 0.31% against OSU, 0.56% against Iowa, and a whopping 1.85% against Illinois.

Dueling 0-8 watch: 19.92% chance.

This week's games (as always, home field is not considered):
Northwestern @ Indiana: Northwestern -2.5, 61% to win
Purdue @ Illinois: Illinois -15, 92% to win
Michigan State @ Iowa: Michigan State -4, 66% to win
Michigan @ Penn State: Michigan -4.5, 67% to win
Ohio State @ Minnesota: Ohio State -36, 99.7% to win

Bowl chances:
Already eligible: MSU, OSU, Wisconsin
Already invited to the Queso Bowl: Minnesota
Illinois: 1 in 1400 chance of failing to reach a bowl
Iowa: 1 in 442,000 chance of failing to reach a bowl
Michigan: 1 in 38 chance of failing to reach a bowl
Purdue: 1 in 7 chance of reaching a bowl
Penn State: 5 in 8 chance of reaching a bowl
Northwestern: 4 in 5 chance of reaching a bowl
Indiana: 4 in 11 chance of reaching a bowl

Conference title simulations:

Champions or co-championsCount
MSU outright 6366
MSU-OSU-Wisc 1454
Iowa-MSU-Wisc 760
MSU-OSU 601
MSU-Wisc 340
Iowa-MSU 304
OSU-Wisc 65
Iowa-Wisc 46
OSU outright 27
Iowa outright 17
Wisc outright 16
Iowa-MSU-OSU 1
Ill-MSU-OSU-Wisc 1
Iowa-MSU-OSU-Wisc 1
Ill-Iowa-MSU-OSU-Wisc 1
MSU outright or shared 9829
Wisc outright or shared 2684
OSU outright or shared 2151
Iowa outright or shared 1130
Ill shared 2

 

The margin-aware method thinks a shared title is far more likely than the W-L only method, but MSU is still better than a 5:3 favorite to win the title outright. The four single-run scenarios are all ties at 6-2; the rest can happen at 7-1.

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