The Big Ten has four teams in the top 10 and five in the top 12 of the first College Football Playoff rankings. Clearly, the conference has plenty to play for in the coming weeks.
But which teams will boost their chances in the committee’s eyes? Who — if anyone — will fall victim to an upset?
Only a few weeks ago, Penn State hosted a night game against then-No. 2 Ohio State that it hoped would define its season. Now the Nittany Lions are ranked No. 12 and are getting a visit from Iowa for another night game, with a New Year’s Six bowl a solid possibility if they finish 10-2.
Then there’s Nebraska. The Huskers are in the top 10 but are considered a clear underdog for the second week in a row. Nebraska proved it belonged with an overtime loss at Wisconsin last week, but a road trip to Ohio State could be even more difficult. However, a win would go a long way toward winning the division and making a statement in the playoff chase.
How will it go? Here are some predictions:
- Indiana at Rutgers: 66.7 percent Indiana
- Michigan State at Illinois: 58.8 percent Michigan State
- No. 8 Wisconsin at Northwestern: 65.7 percent Wisconsin
- Maryland at No. 3 Michigan: 97 percent Michigan
- Purdue at Minnesota: 88.2 percent Minnesota
- Iowa at No. 12 Penn State: 66.3 percent Penn State
- No. 10 Nebraska at No. 6 Ohio State: 86.2 percent Ohio State
- Indiana at Rutgers: Indiana -14
- Michigan State at Illinois: No line (Illinois QB Wes Lunt’s status unknown)
- Wisconsin at Northwestern: Wisconsin -7
- Maryland at Michigan: Michigan -31
- Purdue at Minnesota: Minnesota -17
- Iowa at Penn State: Penn State -7.5
- Nebraska at Ohio State: Ohio State -17
- All 7 experts picked Wisconsin to beat Northwestern
- All 7 picked Michigan to beat Maryland
- 6 of 7 picked Penn State vs. Iowa
- All 7 picked Ohio State to beat Nebraska
Big Ten Network
- Tom Dienhart: Rutgers, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Penn State, Ohio State
- Brent Yarina: Indiana, Michigan State, Northwestern, Michigan, Minnesota, Penn State, Ohio State