B1G Power Rankings: Hazell has life; Illini, Huskers fall hard

Top of the Big Ten stays relatively firm, but a lot of shakeup in the bottom half

B1G Power Rankings - Nov. 1

1. Ohio State (8-0, 4-0 Big Ten); last week's rank: No. 1

Last game: Idle

Never a dull moment, even during a bye week. Cardale Jones is back in as the starting quarterback, at least for one week following J.T. Barrett's arrest for operating a vehicle while intoxicated. It really shouldn't matter who starts against Minnesota. Buckeyes are rolling.

Up next: at Minnesota, 7 p.m. CT Saturday

2. Michigan State (8-0, 4-0); last week's rank: No. 2

Last week: Idle

The countdown is on for Sparty. 20 more days before their big trip to Columbus. But they need to take care of business at Nebraska and against Maryland so that Michigan doesn't start to feel any hope for the B1G East crown either.

Up next: at Nebraska, 7 p.m. CT Saturday

3. Iowa (8-0, 4-0); last week's rank: No. 3

Last week: 31-15 win over Maryland

This could be a special November for Iowa. This doesn't look like a playoff team but the schedule sets up --  at Indiana, vs. Minnesota, vs. Purdue, at Nebraska -- to where they could be in the discussion.

Up next: at Indiana, 2:30 p.m. Saturday

4. Michigan (6-2, 3-1); last week's rank: No. 4

Last week: 29-26 win at Minnesota

Lost in the wake of Minnesota's late-game mismanagement is the late-game grit from Michigan. The Harbaugh stamp on this program is mighty noticeable.

Up next: vs. Rutgers, 2:30 p.m. CT Saturday

5. Wisconsin (7-2, 4-1 Big Ten); last week's rank No. 5

Last week: 48-10 win over Rutgers

If Corey Clement (115 rushing yards, 3 TDs) had been healthy against Iowa, the Badgers season might have been different. Still, with him in the lineup, the Badgers still have a chance to hang around in the West. They just need two losses from Iowa to win it -- which seems unlikely.

Up next: at Maryland, 2:30 p.m. CT Saturday

6. Penn State (7-2, 4-1); last week's rank: No. 7 [MEDIA:1579484

Last week: 39-0 win over Illinois

Saturday's rout of Illinois probably was the best moment of the James Franklin era -- outside of Signing Day. Running back Saquon Barkley and that defensive line are special. If Christian Hackenberg can remain efficient, the Nittany Lions have a shot at nine or 10 (with a bowl game) wins this season.

Up next: at Northwestern, 11 a.m. CT Saturday

7. Northwestern (6-2, 2-2); last week's rank: No. 6 [MEDIA:1579485

Last week: Idle

Like Illinois, that Nebraska win looks less and less impressive. Still, Northwestern, which still has Purdue and Illinois on the schedule, can get to eight or nine wins if it protects home field against Penn State this weekend.

Up next: vs. Penn State, 11 a.m. CT Saturday

8. Minnesota (4-4, 1-3); last week's rank: No. 10 [MEDIA:1579484

Last week: 29-26 loss to No. 15 MIchigan

An emotional week ended in heartbreak as the Gophers mismanaged the final 19 seconds and were stopped on the goal-line for the loss. Still, Tracy Claeys and his great staff had an amazing first 59:41 of the game. Their candidacy may have taken a shot in some minds, but that's too short-sighted. They should have a legitimate shot at keeping the job long-term, even if that seems unlikely with a new AD likely coming to town.

Up next: at No. 1 Ohio State, 7 p.m. Saturday

9. Indiana (4-4, 0-4); last week's rank: No. 11 [MEDIA:1579484

Last week: Idle

The Hoosiers rise by default. Their losing streak likely will increase to six before must-win road games at Maryland and Purdue

Up next: vs. No. 10 Iowa, 2:30 p.m. Saturday

10. Purdue (2-6, 1-3); last week's rank: No. 14 [MEDIA:1579484

Last week: 55-45 win over Nebraska

Illinois has had a better season to this point, but the Boilers have the momentum, confidence from last season's win over the Illini and a coach who is more likely to be back next season.

Up next: vs. Illinois, 11 a.m. CT Saturday

11. Illinois (4-4, 1-3); last week's rank: No. 8 [MEDIA:1579485

Last week: 39-0 loss at Penn State

The Illini offense is just the worst right now. Quite literally, they are the worst scoring offense during Big Ten play (11.8 ppg) by more than five points per game. That's why it's tough to pick them to win another game.

Up next: at Purdue, 11 a.m. CT Saturday

12Nebraska (3-6, 1-4); last week's rank: No. 9 [MEDIA:1579485

Last week: 55-45 loss at Purdue

But Mike Riley is a really, really nice guy...

Up next: vs. No. 6 Michigan State, 7 p.m. CT Saturday

13. Rutgers (3-5, 1-4); last week's rank: No. 12 [MEDIA:1579485

Last week: 48-10 loss at Wisconsin

No Leonte Caroo, no chance for the Scarlet Knights.

Up next: at No. 15 Michigan, 2:30 p.m. CT Saturday

14. Maryland (2-6, 0-4); last week's rank: No. 13 [MEDIA:1579485

Last week: 31-15 loss at Iowa

Another competitive game coached by Mike Locksley, who's auditioning well for another offensive coordinator role. But turnovers -- Maryland is minus-16 in turnover margin this season -- have just crushed the Terps.

Up next: vs. Wisconsin, 2:30 p.m. CT Saturday

Werner's Week 10 picks (winners in bold)

Last week's record: 4-1

Penn State at Northwestern

Illinois at Purdue

Rutgers at Michigan

Iowa at Indiana

Wisconsin at Maryland

Michigan State at Nebraska

Minnesota at Ohio State

 


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