A wild weekend in the Big Ten led to a shakeup in the standings of the Big Ten East. Penn State fell to third place and Michigan State now controls its own destiny. A win over Ohio State could send Sparty to the Big Ten Championship. A shocking loss to Iowa puts the Buckeyes in a tough situation, with matchups remaining against Michigan State and Michigan. Not to mention, the College Football playoff hopes of both Penn State and Ohio State took a major hit. (See Each Power-5 Conference’s Best Chance to Make the Playoff for more on the CFP.)
As for the West, a Wisconsin win against Iowa will clinch the Big Ten West for the Badgers. Iowa and Northwestern are still in contention, but they will need a lot of help. First, the Hawkeyes will need to win to keep their hopes alive. The Wildcats need to beat Purdue and have Iowa win this weekend.
No. 6 Wisconsin beats Indiana 45 – 17. An early red zone interception led to another slow start for the Badgers, who fell down 10-0 to the Hoosiers. The Badgers would score 24 points unanswered. They took a 24-10 lead with five minutes remaining in the third quarter. Quarterback Richard Lagow started for the Hoosiers in place of the injured Peyton Ramsey. His second touchdown pass of the game would make it 24-17 heading into the third quarter. The Wisconsin defense forced two interceptions to bolster their lead. Fullback Alec Ingold led Wisconsin with three touchdowns. Wisconsin will host Iowa on Saturday. The Hoosiers will look to win their first Big Ten game of the year at Illinois.
No. 13 Michigan State upsets No. 16 Penn State 27-24. The Nittany Lions opened up strongly, taking a 14-7 lead at the end of the first quarter. However, a three and a half hour rain delay would slow down their momentum. Michigan State tied it up at 14-14 going into the half. The teams would again be tied at 24 in the fourth quarter. Penn State failed to convert a fourth down in Michigan State territory, giving the ball back to Michigan State. The Spartans would drive 53 yards and cap it off with a 34-yard field goal to win the game. The Spartan defense shut down running back Saquon Barkley, holding him to just 63 yards rushing. Michigan State quarterback Brian Lewerke also threw for 400 yards and two touchdowns. Michigan State looks to keep the ball rolling against Ohio State on Saturday. Penn State has now lost two in a row and will play Rutgers this weekend.
Purdue defeats Illinois 29-10. Purdue dominated the total yardage, posting 435 yards compared to Illinois’ 250 yards. The Boilermakers led 13-10 at the half and they did not look back. The Illini continue to struggle at the quarterback position, using a combination of Cam Thomas and Jeff George Jr. The Illini will try for their first Big Ten win against Indiana. The Boilermakers made an offensive effort to be balanced, passing for 226 yards and running for 209 yards. They lost quarterback David Blough for the season due to a dislocated right ankle. Purdue will play at Northwestern on Saturday.
No. 25 Iowa routs No. 11 Ohio State 55-24. The Hawkeyes intercepted and returned the first pass of the day for an early touchdown. Ohio State would respond and make it 10-10 at the end of the first. The rest of the game would be all Iowa, as they outscored the Buckeyes 45-14 in the last three quarters. Ohio State quarterback JT Barrett struggled, throwing four interceptions. Iowa had zero turnovers on the day. Hawkeye quarterback Nathan Stanley threw for 226 yards and five touchdowns. Ohio State will look to bounce back at Michigan State on Saturday. Iowa will look to upset Wisconsin this Saturday.
Northwestern survives Nebraska, wins 31-24. Four quarters were not enough to separate these two teams, as it was 24-24 heading into overtime. Northwestern received the ball first and capitalized on a Clayton Thorson 1-yard touchdown run. Nebraska only managed -2 yards on their possession. The Huskers lost the turnover battle three to two and managed just 337 yards of total offense. They will look to right the ship at Minnesota this weekend. Northwestern will look for win number five in a row against Purdue on Saturday.
Rutgers defeats Maryland 31-24. The Scarlet Knights took to the ground, rushing for 239 yards. They trailed 24-17 heading into the fourth quarter. They scored on the first play and again later to take the 31-24 lead. Maryland struggled to find a rhythm, punting multiple times in the fourth quarter. They had the ball late at the Rutgers 15-yard line but committed a costly penalty for holding. The Terrapins would turn it over on downs, as Rutgers would hold on for the win. Maryland will host Michigan on Saturday. Rutgers will travel to play Penn State on Saturday.
No. 21 Michigan beats Minnesota 33-10. The story of the day was Michigan’s rushing attack. Running back Karan Higdon rushed for 200 yards and two touchdowns. Running back Chris Evans rushed for 191 yards and two touchdowns for the Wolverines as well. The Gophers struggled offensively, managing just 164 yards of total offense. The momentum from their touchdown disappeared quickly, as Michigan scored just thirty seconds later. Minnesota will play Nebraska on Saturday. Michigan will play at Maryland.
*Rankings reflect AP rankings as of November 7
Big Ten East Standings
- Michigan State 5-1 (7-2 overall)
- Ohio State 5-1 (7-2 overall)
- Penn State 4-2 (7-2 overall)
- Michigan 4-2 (7-2 overall)
- Rutgers 3-3 (4-5 overall)
- Maryland 2-4 (4-5 overall)
- Indiana 0-6 (3-6 overall)
Big Ten West Standings
- Wisconsin 6-0 (9-0 overall)
- Northwestern 4-2 (6-3 overall)
- Iowa 3-3 (6-3 overall)
- Nebraska 3-3 (4-5 overall)
- Purdue 2-4 (4-5 overall)
- Minnesota 1-5 (4-5 overall)
- Illinois 0-6 (2-7 overall)