The Big Ten has three teams in the Top 10: Ohio State, Michigan and Wisconsin. A fourth, Nebraska, is undefeated and ranked No. 15. It’s been a great September for the conference overall.
And that success is carrying over to recognition for players, as well. In ESPN’ latest ranking of the 50 best players in college football, released Wednesday, 12 are from the Big Ten, including two in the Top 5.
Here are the Big Ten players:
4. Michigan LB Jabrill Peppers
5. Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett
12. Ohio State OL Pat Elflein
13. Michigan State DL Malik McDowell
14. Ohio State LB Raekwon McMillan
15. Iowa DB Desmond King
21. Ohio State DB Malik Hooker
35. Michigan TE Jake Butt
36. Ohio State DB Marshon Lattimore
37. Indiana OL Dan Feeney
45. Nebraska QB Tommy Armstrong
46. Ohio State RB Curtis Samuel
It’s a little surprising to see Armstrong so low on the list. He’s had turnover issues the past two seasons, sure, but he’s throw only one interception this season and has been dynamic in the rushing game to go along with his passing numbers. But as long as the Huskers remain undefeated, he should get more recognition.
But the big piece to note is that half of the 12 players are from Ohio State, starting with Barrett at No. 5. Not bad for a program that lost a dozen players to the first four rounds of this year’s NFL Draft. But when you make ridiculous plays like Hooker did in his crazy interception against Bowling Green, you’ll make it to lists like these:
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) September 3, 2016