Big Ten Power Rankings: Who's No. 1?

It was another crazy week in the Big Ten. Who deserves the top spot? Find out here.

It's always an interesting week in the Big Ten, but this week was an especially wild one. Rutgers beats Wisconsin. Illinois beats Maryland. Who wants to be No. 1?

Without further ado, here's my third edition of Big Ten Power Rankings for this season:

14. Penn State (12-4, 0-3, KENPOM: 116th): It's been tough sledding for the Nittany Lions to start Big Ten play once again after a 12-1 non-conference season. Penn State lost to Michigan at home in its only game last week, and now must travel to Bloomington to play Indiana without senior guard John Jackson. Penn State did win at Assembly Hall last year, however. (LAST WEEK: 14)

13. Northwestern (10-6, 1-2, KENPOM: 132nd): The Wildcats lost their only game of the week at Michigan State, but they played the Spartans a whole lot better than Indiana did. Northwestern lost in overtime to perhaps the hottest team in the conference. Chris Collins' team doesn't do anything great, but his players battle hard, and that's worth quite a bit. (LAST WEEK: 12)

12. Minnesota (11-6, 0-4, KENPOM: 46th): The computers love Minnesota, and that's great. But the fact of the matter is, the Gophers haven't won a Big Ten game. And while the schedule hasn't been easy, it also hasn't been daunting. They've lost a lot of close games and haven't been able to close one out. My take: Very average team. (LAST WEEK: 8)

11. Illinois (11-6, 1-3, KENPOM: 55th): The Illini beat Maryland at home, a very quality win. But then they scored only 43 points and lost at Nebraska. Illinois is 0-3 on the road in conference play, and two of the games were not particularly close. Without Rayvonte Rice, scoring is much more difficult for Illinois. (LAST WEEK: 9)

10. Rutgers (10-7, 2-2, KENPOM: 149th): Rutgers beat Wisconsin!? Really!? I still can't believe it. Sure, the Badgers were without Frank Kaminsky, and Traevon Jackson left the game with an injury, but the result is still shocking, nevertheless. Rutgers deserves a ton of credit for beating Bo Ryan's club, regardless of who they had on the court. (LAST WEEK: 13)

9. Nebraska (10-6, 2-2, KENPOM: 89th): The Cornhuskers beat Rutgers and Illinois at home last week. They righted the ship for the moment, but it didn't come against the best competition. Nebraska begins a tough stretch of games Thursday at Wisconsin. (LAST WEEK: 11)

8. Michigan (10-6, 3-1, KENPOM: 76th): The Wolverines three Big Ten wins have come against teams with a combined 1-10 record in the conference. And two of those games were at home. So you really can't blame me for my lack of faith in Michigan at this point. Win at Ohio State on Tuesday and I'll be impressed. (LAST WEEK: 10)

7. Purdue (10-7, 2-2, KENPOM: 77th) The Boilers lost to the Big Ten's two best teams last week, but they looked good in both games. Purdue was in position to upset a full-strength Wisconsin team on the road, but couldn't close it down the stretch. Still, I've been impressed by Matt Painter's team so far. (LAST WEEK: 7)

6. Ohio State (13-4, 2-2, KENPOM: 21st): Thad Matta has so much talent, but many of his guys just don't seem to play all that hard. At least from my vantage point. Amir Williams does more harm than good, and D'Angelo Russell has been wildly inconsistent. When he doesn't score well, the Buckeyes tend to struggle. This is a team, though, that will likely be playing much better by the time March rolls around. (LAST WEEK: 5)

5. Iowa (11-5, 2-1, KENPOM: 45th): You could really put Indiana or Iowa in this spot and the No. 4 spot, but I'm going to give the Hoosiers a slight edge for now. Both team have played the same teams in conference play, with the same results. The Hawkeyes have a tough challenge on the road against a desperate Minnesota team on Tuesday. (LAST WEEK: 3)

4. Indiana (12-4, 2-1, KENPOM: 54th): The computers haven't been very kind to the Hoosiers yet, but they're sitting a 2-1 after a tough three-game stretch to open Big Ten play. Sure, their loss at Michigan State was as ugly as they come, but they rebounded to beat a talented Ohio State team on Saturday. If they take care of business and beat Penn State and Illinois this week, they'll be 4-1 in conference play and ranked in the top 25. That's something nobody saw coming about a month ago. (LAST WEEK: 4)

3. Michigan State (12-5, 3-1, KENPOM: 17th): The Spartans may be the hottest team in the Big Ten after dropping their first game to Maryland. Travis Trice is playing at a very high level, and Michigan State looks poised to challenge for a conference title. After Wisconsin lost at Rutgers, anything seems possible. (LAST WEEK: 6)

2. Maryland (15-2, 3-1, KENPOM: 20th): There's no movement at the top of the power rankings, even though both teams lost games this week. The Terrapins lost a tough one at Illinois, a team that seems to earn one huge home upset every year. But they rebounded with a win at Purdue. Maryland will be home all week with games against Rutgers and Michigan State. That rematch with the Spartans should be a fun one. (LAST WEEK: 2)

1. Wisconsin (15-2, 3-1, KENPOM: 6th): Look, the Badgers lost at Rutgers and looked shaky against Purdue at home, but they're still the best team in the conference. For now, anyway. Frank Kaminsky is a player of the year candidate, and Jackson makes their offense go. Still, Rutgers!? I digress. For Wisconsin to win a national title, I think Sam Dekker has to learn to be more assertive on the offensive end. (LAST WEEK: 1) Top Stories