Week Five Big Ten Predictions

It's time for a look at the 2006 season from a Big Ten perspective, circa Week Five. Jon Miller breaks down each team, game by game, until we get through all 12 weeks. We've taken a look at the first four weeks, and now we are into Big Ten regular season play for most of the clubs.

Week One Picks CLICK HERE
Week Two Picks CLICK HERE
Week Three Picks CLICK HERE
Week Four Picks CLICK HERE

Illinois at Michigan State: Year Two of the Ron Zook era at Illinois starts out the same way year one did, with his team being 0-2 in league play. This year also starts out the same way for Michigan State that last year did; an undefeated record prior to its game with Michigan that could be the difference between making a run at a Big Ten title or heading into the dumpster. MSU

Wisconsin at Indiana: The Badgers could be licking some wounds from their loss to Michigan, and Indiana is flying high at 4-0. This won't be a layup for Wisconsin, but they should pick up the road win. A lot will depend on the health of Jon Stocco. WISCONSIN

Michigan at Minnesota: This is really the only choice that ABC has with regards to what it will air at 7:00pm. My pick is for this game to be on ESPN, with Iowa vs Ohio State on ABC. That being said, it will not impact the outcome, even though Minnesota has played Michigan to a standstill in recent years, beating them last year in Ann Arbor. This one won't be close. MICHIGAN

Northwestern at Penn State: Welcome back to reality, Wildcats. PSU

Purdue at Notre Dame: It might be too much to ask for three Big Ten teams to beat Notre Dame this year. I will give the nod to the Irish in this one. NOTRE DAME

Ohio State at Iowa: This one could be for a lot of marbles. If both teams are undefeated, Ohio State will be #1 and Iowa will have a Top 10 ranking. ESPN Gameday will be live from Kinnick Stadium, it will be a national broadcast television audience, the first true national broadcast television audience for an Iowa game since…since…the 1990 Rose Bowl? Could be. Let's hope that it all sets up this way, because if Iowa wins this game, it will likely have a Top Five ranking, putting itself in a great position for a BCS bowl game in 2006. Of course, health is always the wildcard. IOWA

Jon Miller's Predicted Big Ten Standings after Two Games

5-0 (2-0) Iowa
5-0 (2-0) Michigan
4-1 (1-0) Michigan State
4-1 (1-1) Ohio State
4-1 (1-1) Purdue
4-1 (1-1) Wisconsin
3-2 (1-1) Penn State
4-1 (0-1) Northwestern
4-1 (0-1) Indiana
2-3 (0-2) Illinois
2-3 (0-2) Minnesota

Iowa, Michigan and Ohio State are in the Top 10, Michigan State, Purdue and Wisconsin are in the Top 25. Iowa vs Purdue (ESPN HD 11:00am) and Michigan State vs Michigan (ABC 3:30) are the marquee games in Week Six. Those are also my TV predictions, so don't schedule any parties just yet. The Iowa vs Purdue game is set for an 11am start in the real world, however.

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