Eleven weeks into the season we get the next upset in the B1G. In an unlikely upset (no "writer" saw this coming in the predictions), Iowa defeated Michigan. It was the second upset of one of the anointed champs (OSU lost to PSU earlier this season). This one complicates the Big Ten East race considerably. In the West, Nebraska's win over Minnesota leaves us two horses in the race, but Wisconsin ownst he tie braker. However, both teams face tests in the last two weeks of the season. Here's how we see the teams' stocks after Saturday:
Ohio State Buckeyes - That was a fun tune up game, wasn’t it? If Ohio State can keep this offensive output up heading into The Game, the Big Ten could potentially screw themselves out of a playoff slot. Next up: At Michigan State.
Penn State Nittany Lions - A close shave against Indiana shouldn’t have the stock up much. However, each win is one closer to potentially screwing UM and OSU out of their Birthright! Penn State is now down four offensive linemen. They could be burning red shirts next week if things don’t improve. Next Up: Rutgers
Iowa Hawkeyes - Just three days after an OTE "writer" called for his head, Greg Davis got his shit together and hammered Michigan. Iowa, whose stock was delisted last week due to inferior football prowess, rallied mightily this week. Iowa’s defense stifled Michigan’s vaunted passing attack. While Akrum Wadley, who mustered a paltry 34 yards at Penn State, ran all over Michigan’s defense for 115 yards. Next Up: At Illinois
Wisconsin Badgers - Just keep winning, right? The stout defense is carrying this team and occasionally when Corey Clement remembers how to run 48-3 blowouts occur. Wisconsin wins out and they will see the winner of whatever the hell has happened to the east now that Michigan decided to derp a game to Iowa. For Wisconsin, I’m sure a matchup potentially against Penn State in the title game is much more appetizing than either OSU or Michigan. Next up: Purdue.
Nebraska Cornhuskers - Miracles happen. Tommy Armstrong carted off the field last week, returned to hand Minnesota its third loss of the season. He did it with crossed eyes, blurry vision, a bum ankle, and a torn hammy. But that actually seemed to improve Tommy’s game. Nebraska went into the half trailing 17-10. After the break, they scored twice and held Minnesota scoreless to win 24-17. They are now even with Wisconsin in the race for the B1G West. Up Next: Maryland
Northwestern Wildcats - What harbor, Townie? In a game that was never close, the Nerds blew Purdue out of the water. Purdue is just what the Cats needed to get back on track. One more win to bowl eligibility. Butlers everywhere rejoice. Next Up: At Minnesota
Indiana Hoosiers - Turnovers have been the death of you this year, haven’t they? In a year where the defense has finally turned it around, so it seems the offense has as well with their penchant for turning the ball over as opposed to scoring at will. Turning the ball over when you have a chance to go down the field and take the lead at the end of the game is heartbreaking to watch. Next up: Michigan.
Michigan State Spartans - Any win is great for Michigan State this year but taking it to Rutgers doesn’t get you to raise your stock. That’s expected. Let's see if the win can give Sparty some confidence as they roll into a big matchup next week. Next up: Ohio State.
Illinois Fighting Illini - Illinois stopped fighting this week and just embraced its role as sacrificial lamb to Wisconsin. The Illini gave up three touchdowns in the first quarter...and never put up a fight the rest of the way. Lovie to Green Bay? Next Up: Iowa
Maryland Terrapins - That was completely expected but was still ugly nonetheless. Maryland was completely outmatched by Ohio State and it didn’t help that Maryland’s leading rusher was suspended before the game. It doesn’t get too much easier next week either. Next up: at Nebraska. What a brutal three game stretch for Maryland.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights - When one 2-7 team blows out another 2-7 team, things are not good. Let’s define this blowout though: It was 49-0 at the end of the 3rd quarter and the gas was let off. That’s just not good, Rutgers. Next up: Penn State.
Purdue Boilermakers - After playing several teams tough in the first half, only to lose in the second half, Purdue decided to just forego winning entirely against Northwestern. It barely mustered a wet fart of an attempt in the second half of this game. All world quarterback David Blough was 21 of 36 and a touchdown...but threw an unforgivable three interceptions. The kid has an arm, but needs to stop with the giveaways if Purdue is going to go anywhere with him under center. Next Up: Wisconsin
Minnesota Golden Gophers - Oh well, we knew it was too good to last. Minnesota’s offense just couldn’t seem to get on track after the half. Mitch Leidner threw for 180 yards and ran for a touchdown. But it wasn’t enough to overcome Nebraska. Next Up: Northwestern
Michigan Wolverines - Incipient Heisman Trophy Winner Jabrill Peppers single handedly carried the team most of the way...but fell short. Incipient OPOTY Wilton Speight threw for just 103 yards and an interception. The Wolverine offense mustered just 200 yards total against Iowa...a team that gave up 599 yards the week before to Penn State. This was an inexplicable let down for what appeared to be a world-class offense. Next Up: Indiana