Wisconsin’s win over Iowa sealed their trip to the Big Ten Championship. The Badgers will represent the Big Ten West division. This will be Wisconsin’s second consecutive appearance in the championship, and fifth time in seven years. A win also kept them alive in the College Football Playoff hunt.
The East division gained a frontrunner in Ohio State. The Buckeyes’ decisive win over Michigan State makes them the favorite to win the East. They control their own destiny, which means if they win their last two games they will be representing the East. However, Ohio State still has a game against rival Michigan in Ann Arbor in two weekends.
No. 5 Wisconsin defeats Iowa 38-14. The Badger defense made a statement on Saturday, holding the Hawkeye offense to just 66 yards of total offense. The Badger run game posted 247 yards on the day. The lone bright spot for the Iowa team was the pass defense, which forced three interceptions on the day. Two of those interceptions were returned for touchdowns. Wisconsin quarterback Alex Hornibrook will need to take better care of the ball if the Badgers hope to make a College Football Playoff run. The Badgers will host Michigan on Saturday. Iowa will look to spark the offense this weekend when they host Purdue.
No. 8 Ohio State routs No. 22 Michigan State 48-3. The Ohio State offense struck quickly, jumping to a 35-0 lead with 6 minutes remaining in the first half. Michigan State scored their lone points on a 37-yard field goal just before halftime. Running back Mike Weber had two touchdowns and 162 yards rushing on nine carries. The Buckeye offense posted 524 yards of total offense in the game. They will play Illinois on Saturday. Michigan State will try to address issues on both the offense and the defense when they play Maryland this weekend.
No. 13 Penn State beats Rutgers 35-6. Rutgers came in hot, scoring on two early field goals. The Penn State offense finally came to life with a Trace McSorley 20-yard run in the second quarter. He had two passing touchdowns and a rushing touchdown on his way to becoming the Penn State all time leader in touchdowns. Rutgers struggled offensively in the passing game, throwing for just 43 yards. They have relied heavily on their running game all year, but didn’t receive the same impact against a stout Penn State defense. Penn State will play Nebraska on Saturday. Rutgers will try to bounce back against Indiana.
Northwestern beats Purdue 23-13. Northwestern scored first on a Clayton Thorson touchdown run to take a 7-0 lead. Purdue would have multiple opportunities on their next two drives to sway the momentum, but missed a field goal and turned the ball over on downs. Northwestern was able to capitalize and scored a touchdown with just 16 seconds remaining in the first half. The Wildcats opened the second half with two field goals to take the 20-0 lead. Purdue fought hard to get back into the game. Elijah Sindelar led the Boilermakers with 376 passing yards and two passing touchdowns. However, the twenty point deficit was too much, and Northwestern held on for the win. Purdue will look to bounce back against Iowa on Saturday. Northwestern will look for win number six in a row against Minnesota.
Indiana defeats Illinois 24-14. Shaky quarterback play was once again a problem for the Illini. They stuck with quarterback Jeff George Jr, who threw for two touchdowns and two interceptions. He also lost a fumble. The Indiana defense played well, recording eight sacks in the game. The Hoosier offense started slow, but was able to score twice in the second quarter to take a 14-0 lead. Illinois was able to make it 14-17 early in the fourth quarter, thanks to a 5-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Caleb Reams. They forced a Hoosier punt on the following drive, but were failed to convert a third down. Quarterback Richard Lagow led the Hoosiers 41 yards to score a touchdown, sealing their first Big Ten win of the year. Indiana will look to build this weekend against Rutgers. Illinois will look to win their first Big Ten game of the year on Saturday against Ohio State.
Minnesota tops Nebraska 54-21. Minnesota started the game with a bang, returning the opening kick off 100 yards for a touchdown. Nebraska was able to respond with their own touchdown on the following drive, but the Gophers would pull away. The Minnesota offense ran wild, rushing for 409 total yards on the ground. Running backs Demry Croft and Kobe McCrary ran for three touchdowns each. The Cornhuskers had no answer for this Gopher rushing attack. Questions remain around the future of Nebraska Head Coach Mike Riley’s job security. The Huskers will try to upset Penn State on Saturday. Minnesota will look to build momentum against Northwestern.
No. 19 Michigan beats Maryland 35-10. Michigan had a strong first half to blow open a 28-0 lead going into halftime. They had relied heavily on their running backs in the previous weeks, as third string quarterback Brandon Peters is starting due to injury. Peters played well, passing for two touchdowns without turning the ball over. Maryland showed signs of a comeback late in the third quarter with a field goal. They forced a punt on Michigan’s next drive and were able to score a touchdown on their ensuing possession, making the score 28-10. However, Michigan was able to respond with their own touchdown to put the game away. Michigan will play at Wisconsin on Saturday.
*Rankings reflect AP rankings as of November 13.
- Ohio State 6-1 (8-2 overall)
- Michigan State 5-2 (7-3 overall)
- Penn State 5-2 (8-2 overall)
- Michigan 5-2 (8-2 overall)
- Rutgers 3-4 (4-6 overall)
- Maryland 2-5 (4-6 overall)
- Indiana 1-6 (4-6 overall)
- Wisconsin 7-0 (10-0 overall)
- Northwestern 5-2 (7-3 overall)
- Nebraska 3-4 (4-6 overall)
- Iowa 3-4 (6-4 overall)
- Purdue 2-5 (4-6 overall)
- Minnesota 2-5 (5-5 overall)
- Illinois 0-7 (2-8 overall)