Wisconsin’s football team has yet to put together four quarters of its best football this season. But the Badgers have still managed to beat Utah State and Florida Atlantic at home without much stress, and remain the class of the Big Ten West in the process.
In our Week 2 Land of Ten Power Poll, voted on by 13 of our writers, Wisconsin remained at No. 4. The Badgers trail only East Division stalwarts Penn State, Michigan and Ohio State.
In my voting, I pegged Wisconsin at third overall for the second consecutive week. Penn State remained No. 1 after recording a solid 33-14 victory against Pitt. I leapfrogged Michigan from fourth into the second spot, even though the Wolverines struggled in their 36-14 win against Cincinnati. Michigan’s season-opening victory against Florida is perhaps the most impressive early victory from a Big Ten team, which I took into account. In turn, I dropped Ohio State two spots to No. 4 following the Buckeyes’ 31-16 loss to Oklahoma.
In my mind, those four teams are the best the Big Ten has to offer. Iowa’s wild 44-41 overtime victory against Iowa State keeps the Hawkeyes unbeaten, but the defense allowed 467 yards, including 347 yards and 4 touchdowns through the air.
Minnesota picked up a 48-14 victory at Oregon State, Illinois squeezed past Western Kentucky 20-7 and Purdue looked impressive in a 44-21 victory against Ohio on Friday. Still, those teams have much more to prove before they close in on the Badgers in the West. As for Nebraska and Northwestern, road losses against Oregon and Duke, respectively, are not good signs this early in the season.
Wisconsin still has many areas to improve on following its 31-14 victory against Florida Atlantic. Yes, the Badgers’ offense racked up 564 yards and the defense did not surrender a second-half point, but the game was much closer than expected. Wisconsin will have to be better at BYU this week and in the coming games as Big Ten play begins.
- Penn State
- Ohio State
- Michigan State
Week 2 Land of 10 Power Poll vote totals
- Penn State (12)…168
- Michigan (1)…154
- Ohio State…140
- Michigan State…69