Big Ten Power Rankings (Week 6): Michigan Falling Like Raindrops

By Nick Polak on October 9, 2017 at 8:17 pm
Oct 7, 2017; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines tight end Sean McKeon (84) fumbles the ball as he is tackled by Michigan State Spartans safety Matt Morrissey (10) in the first half in the first half at Michigan Stadium.

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

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Big Ten Power Rankings (Week 6)
Rank Team Record/Previous Game Result

Explanation

1

 

Last Week: 1

Penn State

Points: 139


6-0


 


Last Week:
31-7 win over Northwestern
Halfway through the season, Penn State has done exactly what they needed to do. They've dispatched all but one opponent with relative ease, and even in the Iowa game, they dominated everything but the scoreboard. The defense has been outstanding and the offense has yet to reach its ceiling. This is a dangerous team. (Next Week: BYE)

2

Last Week: 3

Ohio State

Points: 127


5-1


 


Last Week:
62-14 win over Maryland
The Buckeye offense is unstoppable right now. Kevin Wilson has J.T. Barrett and company firing on all cylinders, and they're laying waste to the teams in front of them. Granted, the teams in front of them haven't been all that great, including a Terrapin team that was on its fourth quarterback by the end of the game. The tougher tests remain, but this team is scary. (Next Week: @ Nebraska)

3

Last Week: 2

Wisconsin

Points: 124


5-0


 


Last Week:
38-17 win over Nebraska
Despite a closely-played first three-ish quarters against Nebraska, the defense and Jonathan Taylor once again paved the way to victory. This team will simply have no resistance in their path until the Big Ten Championship game, especially with Michigan looking very beatable. Why did they move down then? We'd still take OSU against the Badgers. (Next Week: vs. Purdue)

4

Last Week: 5

Michigan State

Points: 107


4-1


 


Last Week:
14-10 win over No. 7 Michigan
Another week, another step forward for the Spartans. They didn't play particularly well against Michigan, but did enough to give themselves a lead before the monsoon rains began pouring down. The defense is legit, and is making Michigan State a force in the conference once more. They'll get an interesting test with P.J. Fleck's Gophers this week. (Next Week: @ Minnesota)

5

Last Week: 4

Michigan

Points: 92


4-1


 


Last Week:
14-10 loss to Michigan State
Oh, boy. It's hard to have watched the Michigan State game and feel confident about the offense or the offensive coaching staff. The second half was a weather disaster, but the first half was fine. And the Wolverines still looked awful. And when it started raining, THEY KEPT THROWING THE BALL. Now they have to face another great defense before heading to Happy Valley. (Next Week: @ Indiana)

6

Last Week: 7

Iowa

Points: 88


4-2


 


Last Week:
45-16 win over Illinois 
The Hawkeyes let the Illini hang around longer than they would have liked, but busted the game open with a massive fourth quarter (21 points). Iowa is one of the few teams in the conference that we can really pin down. They have an offense that will make bad teams pay, a defense that will make good teams squirm, and will probably go 8-4. (Next Week: BYE)

7

Last Week: 10

Purdue

Points: 78


3-2


 


Last Week:
31-17 win over Minnesota
The Boilermakers weren't actually 14 points better than Minnesota (they scored the final 7 points on a pick-six), but they were certainly the better team. Not only that, but the responded to the weather delay far better than P.J. Fleck's squad. Jeff Brohm has this team thinking bowl game. (Next Week: @ No. 7 Wisconsin)

8

Last Week: 12

Indiana

Points: 63


3-2


 


Last Week:
27-0 win over Charleston Southern
The Hoosiers bounced back from the Penn State beatdown by implementing their own blowout of Charleston Southern, which means...something? This ranking is a more accurate reflection of where Indiana is in the conference than last week's 12th ranking. They have a really nice chance to make some noise against Michigan this week. (Next Week: vs. No. 17 Michigan)

9

Last Week: 6

Maryland

Points: 58


3-2


 


Last Week:
62-14 loss to No. 10 Ohio State
Aaaaaaand THAT'S what eventually happens to teams that are on their third-string quarterback. No, Ohio State is not normal, but the Terps were bound to be exposed sooner rather than later. No team is capable of surviving three quarterback injuries for too long. It would be shocking to see opposing teams do anything but sell out to stop the run the rest of the way against Maryland. (Next Week: vs. Northwestern)

10

Last Week: 8

Minnesota

Points: 51


3-2


 


Last Week:
31-17 loss to Purdue
This Minnesota team just isn't very good. They played a close game against Purdue, but they should be good enough to beat Purdue, despite the Boilermaker resurgence. It's hard to see what Minnesota's formula is for beating good teams, but they'll get a shot against the newly-ranked Spartans anyway. (Next Week: vs. No. 21 Michigan State)

11

Last Week: 9

Northwestern

Points: 46


2-3


 


Last Week:


31-7 loss to No. 4 Penn State

Northwestern did a great job of stopping Saquon Barkley. They did a very bad job of scoring points, stopping the passing game, punting the ball, not getting ejected for targeting, and not committing penalties. This upcoming week's result against Maryland should prove to be a great barometer for both programs. (Next Week: vs. Maryland)

12

Last Week: 11

Nebraska

Points: 38


3-3


 


Last Week:
38-17 loss to No. 9 Wisconsin
Hey, Nebraska. You might be better than No. 12 in the conference. But it's rrreeeaaallllllyyy hard to tell when you keep turning the ball over. Stop that. (Next Week: vs. No. 9 Ohio State)

13

 

Last Week: 13

Illinois

Points: 18


2-3


 


Last Week:
45-16 loss to Iowa
Dejectedly, Lovie turns and admires his photo with Devon Hester and Cedric Benson. He wonders where he went wrong. He looks down at his Illinois cap and sighs. "Another day, another dollar, I guess" he mumbles to himself, and trudges out of his office. (Next Week: vs. Rutgers)

14

 

Last Week: 14

Rutgers

Points: 12


1-4


 


Last Week:
BYE
THE BATTLE FOR BIG TEN BASEMENT SUPREMACY IS UPON US. TWO WILL ENTER. ONE WILL LEAVE. THE CAGE IS CLOSED, THE LIGHTS ARE DIMMED, THE BATTLE. NOW. BEGINS. (NEXT WEEK: vs. ILLINOIS)

All team logo photos are courtesy of 247Sports.

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