Gophers' next foe, Wisconsin, up to 5th in BCS

Wisconsin (8-0, 5-0 in Big Ten) moved up two spots in the third issue of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) rankings, which were released today, as the Badgers are now ranked fifth behind No. 1 Southern California (8-0), No. 2 Oklahoma (8-0), No. 3 Auburn (9-0) and No. 4 California (6-1).

Despite having a bye last weekend, Wisconsin passed Miami (FL) and Florida State after both teams lost over the weekend. The Badgers are the highest-ranked Big Ten team in the BCS poll and remain one of only six teams in the country with an unblemished record. Wisconsin is 8-0 for just the second time since 1901, as the program opened with nine straight triumphs in 1998 to share the Big Ten title and advance to the Rose Bowl. The Badgers put their perfect record on the line on Saturday as they host Minnesota (6-3, 3-3).

For the second straight week, Michigan (8-1, 6-0) rose one spot as the school stands 11th in the latest BCS poll. The Wolverines picked up a triple overtime victory against Michigan State (4-4, 3-2) last Saturday to remain tied atop the Big Ten standings with Wisconsin. Michigan has a bye next weekend before returning to action by hosting Northwestern (4-4, 3-2) on November 13. After debuting at No. 23 last week, Iowa (6-2, 4-1) climbed two spots to No. 21 after notching a road triumph at Illinois (2-7, 0-6) and will host Purdue on Saturday.

The BCS rankings will be announced each Monday through November 29 and the final BCS poll will be announced on Sunday, December 5. The teams ranked No. 1 and 2 in the final BCS standings will meet for the national championship in the Orange Bowl on January 4. If a Big Ten team is not ranked No. 1 or 2 in the final BCS poll, the conference champion (or co-champion as designated by the Big Ten tie-breaking procedures) will play in the Rose Bowl on January 1.

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