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BIG TEN WIN PROJECTIONS: POST-WEEK 10

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There are only two undefeated teams left in the Big Ten after week 10, and Iowa is still one of them.

Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Week 10 was a good week for Iowa. Not only did the Hawkeyes move to 9-0, but a Corey Clement-less Wisconsin won a close one and improved to 8-2, while Northwestern edged out Penn State to improve to 7-2. Those two teams continuing to win helps Iowa look better with their victories over both squads. But what was potentially the best outcome of week 10 was Nebraska pulling off the upset over Michigan State. Now, obviously, it doesn't matter if Iowa wins their next 4 games (yes, I am assuming Iowa makes the Big Ten Championship game) because they would control their own destiny and would be the only undefeated team left in the conference. But, if Iowa loses a game -- particularly to someone like Ohio State in the Big Ten Championship -- Michigan State's loss could help Iowa make the Rose Bowl.

Anyway, in addition to Iowa having a favorable Saturday, the Big Ten West also won 4 out of the 5 inter-division games played this weekend. Wisconsin and Iowa were obviously pretty decent favorites, but Northwestern and Nebraska were not. Minnesota didn't have enough offense to beat a J.T. Barrett-less Ohio State, but whatever. They played hard and didn't embarrass the division.

Now, let's look at some win projections, shall we?

Here are the overall season wins:

THOR+ Rank B1G West Season Wins 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
16 Iowa 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 1.3% 13.7% 43.8% 41.2%
29 Wisconsin 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 9.4% 41.7% 48.9% 0.0% 0.0%
50 Nebraska 0.0% 0.0% 21.2% 53.2% 25.6% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
58 Illinois 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 32.6% 50.9% 16.5% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
63 Northwestern 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 14.5% 42.0% 35.0% 8.5% 0.0% 0.0%
79 Minnesota 0.0% 0.0% 25.3% 47.6% 22.8% 4.3% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
84 Purdue 20.6% 48.5% 28.0% 2.9% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
THOR+ Rank B1G East Season Wins 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
11 Michigan 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 3.2% 19.7% 46.0% 31.1% 0.0% 0.0%
12 Ohio State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 4.8% 30.2% 47.1% 17.9%
36 Michigan State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 10.6% 41.4% 38.9% 9.1% 0.0%
38 Penn State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 35.4% 49.0% 15.6% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
76 Maryland 10.8% 38.5% 38.5% 12.2% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
87 Indiana 0.0% 0.0% 29.4% 44.3% 23.0% 3.3% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
96 Rutgers 0.0% 17.1% 42.3% 32.1% 8.5% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%

And here are the conference win projections:

THOR+ Rank B1G West Conference Wins 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
16 Iowa 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 1.3% 13.7% 43.8% 41.2%
29 Wisconsin 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 9.4% 41.7% 48.9% 0.0%
50 Nebraska 0.0% 0.0% 21.2% 53.2% 25.6% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
58 Illinois 0.0% 0.0% 32.6% 50.9% 16.5% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
63 Northwestern 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 14.5% 42.0% 35.0% 8.5% 0.0% 0.0%
79 Minnesota 0.0% 25.3% 47.6% 22.8% 4.3% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
84 Purdue 0.0% 20.6% 48.5% 28.0% 2.9% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
THOR+ Rank B1G East Conference Wins 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
11 Michigan 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 3.2% 19.7% 46.0% 31.1% 0.0%
12 Ohio State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 4.8% 30.2% 47.1% 17.9%
36 Michigan State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 10.6% 41.4% 38.9% 9.1% 0.0%
38 Penn State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 35.4% 49.0% 15.6% 0.0% 0.0%
76 Maryland 10.8% 38.5% 38.5% 12.2% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
87 Indiana 29.4% 44.3% 23.0% 3.3% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
96 Rutgers 0.0% 32.6% 49.8% 17.6% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%

THOR+ now gives Iowa 85% odds to win at least 11 games this season, which would be enough to win the West. Additionally, we are also creeping toward the 50% mark on a 12-0 season. But, one game at a time, folks.

In the East, Michigan State isn't out of the running for the division title, but they will have to beat Ohio State in two weeks in order to play in Indy. Of course, that leaves Ohio State as the current favorite in the East, but it's not the most comfortable of margins. THOR+ currently has the Buckeyes beating the Spartans, but Michigan beating Ohio State in the final week of the season. That would give Michigan the division crown if they also beat Indiana and Penn State in the next two weeks. Now, if Michigan State beats Ohio State, but Ohio State beats Michigan and those are the only losses each team has until the end of the regular season, that would mean a three-way tie atop the East. That scenario, I believe, would be decided by the College Football Playoff Rankings the Tuesday before the championship game. Editor's note: Not true. I was misremembering the scenario in which MSU's only loss came to Ohio State, whose only loss came to Michigan. That's impossible now. The scenario crossed out would actually give Michigan State the East because of the tie-breaker over Ohio State.

So, for now, Iowa and Ohio State are the projected Big Ten Championship game, according to THOR+. If that were to happen this week, THOR+ would favor Ohio State (57%) 25-23. Boo. But at least Iowa might get the Rose Bowl. That's not a bad consolation prize.

Here are the mean, min, and max wins for each team:

THOR+ B1G West Mean Wins Min. Wins Max. Wins Mean B1G Wins Min B1G Wins Max B1G Wins
16 Iowa 11.2 9 12 7.2 5 8
29 Wisconsin 9.4 8 10 6.4 5 7
50 Nebraska 5.0 4 6 3.0 2 4
58 Illinois 5.8 5 7 2.8 2 4
63 Northwestern 8.4 7 10 4.4 3 6
79 Minnesota 5.1 4 7 2.1 1 4
84 Purdue 3.1 2 5 2.1 1 4
THOR+ B1G East Mean Wins Min. Wins Max. Wins Mean B1G Wins Min B1G Wins Max B1G Wins
11 Michigan 9.0 7 10 6.0 4 7
12 Ohio State 10.8 9 12 6.8 5 8
36 Michigan State 9.5 8 11 5.5 4 7
38 Penn State 7.8 7 9 4.8 4 6
76 Maryland 3.5 2 5 1.5 0 3
87 Indiana 5.0 4 7 1.0 0 3
96 Rutgers 4.3 3 6 1.9 1 3

Lastly, after missing on Northwestern/Penn State and Illinois/Purdue (but, getting Nebraska/Michigan State correct!), THOR+ is now 68.9% picking Big Ten West teams this season and 85.2% for teams from the East. That's a total of 77% for the entire Big Ten, which is a bit better than the 76% THOR+ is for all 128 FBS teams this season.

Big Ten West

Iowa

Date Iowa Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Illinois State FCS W
9/12 Away Iowa State 81 W
9/19 Home Pittsburgh 56 W
9/26 Home North Texas 127 W
10/3 Away Wisconsin 29 W
10/10 Home Illinois 58 W
10/17 Away Northwestern 63 W
10/31 Home Maryland 76 W
11/7 Away Indiana 87 W
11/14 Home Minnesota 79 82%
11/21 Home Purdue 84 83%
11/27 Away Nebraska 50 59%

THOR+ Record: 6-2 (75%)

Another week and another opponent that scares me. This season is fun, but it probably isn't good for my health.

Illinois

Date Illinois Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Kent State 113 W
9/12 Home W. Illinois FCS W
9/19 Away North Carolina 5 L
9/26 Home Middle Tennessee 69 W
10/3 Home Nebraska 50 W
10/10 Away Iowa 16 L
10/24 Home Wisconsin 29 L
10/31 Away Penn State 38 L
11/7 Away Purdue 84 W
11/14 Home Ohio State 12 32%
11/21 Away Minnesota 79 52%
11/28 Neutral Northwestern 63 54%

THOR+ Record: 6-2 (75%)

Hey, Illinois didn't lose to Purdue! In fact, they pretty much did what Penn State did to them last week! They still need one more win to become bowl-eligible, though.

Minnesota

Date Minnesota Team Rank Projected Win%
9/3 Home TCU 20 L
9/12 Away Colorado State 83 W
9/19 Home Kent State 113 W
9/26 Home Ohio 100 W
10/3 Away Northwestern 63 L
10/10 Away Purdue 84 W
10/17 Home Nebraska 50 L
10/31 Home Michigan 11 L
11/7 Away Ohio State 12 L
11/14 Away Iowa 16 18%
11/21 Home Illinois 58 48%
11/28 Home Wisconsin 29 37%

THOR+ Record: 7-2 (77.8%)

Minnesota's defense is likely good enough to keep them in the remaining three games, but it probably isn't good enough to get them 2 more wins and a bowl game.

Nebraska

Date Nebraska Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home BYU 34 L
9/12 Home South Alabama 114 W
9/19 Away Miami (Florida) 54 L
9/26 Home Southern Mississippi 75 W
10/3 Away Illinois 58 L
10/10 Home Wisconsin 29 L
10/17 Away Minnesota 79 W
10/24 Home Northwestern 63 L
10/31 Away Purdue 84 L
11/7 Home Michigan State 36 W
11/14 Away Rutgers 96 63%
11/28 Home Iowa 16 41%

THOR+ Record: 7-3 (70%)

We've all enjoyed the meltdown in Lincoln this season, but Nebraska just did Iowa a solid. Good job, corn brethren. Just don't pull that crap on Black Friday.

Northwestern

Date Northwestern Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Stanford 2 W
9/12 Home Eastern Illinois FCS W
9/19 Away Duke 52 W
9/26 Home Ball State 110 W
10/3 Home Minnesota 79 W
10/10 Away Michigan 11 L
10/17 Home Iowa 16 L
10/24 Away Nebraska 50 W
11/7 Home Penn State 38 W
11/14 Home Purdue 84 63%
11/21 Away Wisconsin 29 28%
11/28 Neutral Illinois 58 46%

THOR+ Record: 4-4 (50%)

Northwestern is one of the Big Ten teams THOR+ has struggled with this season. THOR+ continues to pick them to lose, but they continue to win. At this point, I'm pretty confident they are a better team than the model is giving them credit for.

Purdue

Date Purdue Team Rank Projected Win%
9/6 Away Marshall 64 L
9/12 Home Indiana State FCS W
9/19 Home Virginia Tech 62 L
9/26 Home Bowling Green 32 L
10/3 Away Michigan State 36 L
10/10 Home Minnesota 79 L
10/17 Away Wisconsin 29 L
10/31 Home Nebraska 50 W
11/7 Home Illinois 58 L
11/14 Away Northwestern 63 37%
11/21 Away Iowa 16 17%
11/28 Home Indiana 87 59%

THOR+ Record: 4-4 (50%)

Purdue is the other team THOR+ is struggling with, but on the opposite end of the spectrum. THOR+ keeps picking the Boilers for the upset, but it just isn't happening. I'm pretty sure they are worse than THOR+ thinks they are.

Wisconsin

Date Wisconsin Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Neutral Alabama 15 L
9/12 Home Miami (Ohio) 118 W
9/19 Home Troy 86 W
9/26 Home Hawai'i 109 W
10/3 Home Iowa 16 L
10/10 Away Nebraska 50 W
10/17 Home Purdue 84 W
10/24 Away Illinois 58 W
10/31 Home Rutgers 96 W
11/7 Away Maryland 76 W
11/21 Home Northwestern 63 72%
11/28 Away Minnesota 79 63%

THOR+ Record: 8-2 (80%)

Assuming Iowa doesn't lose 2 of their next 3 games, I fully support the Badgers wining their final two games. Hopefully Corey Clement gets healthy fast.

Big Ten East

Indiana

Date Indiana Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home S. Illinois FCS W
9/12 Home Florida International 89 W
9/19 Home Western Kentucky 42 W
9/26 Away Wake Forest 92 W
10/3 Home Ohio State 12 L
10/10 Away Penn State 38 L
10/17 Home Rutgers 96 L
10/24 Away Michigan State 36 L
11/7 Home Iowa 16 L
11/14 Home Michigan 11 22%
11/21 Away Maryland 76 37%
11/28 Away Purdue 84 41%

THOR+ Record: 5-3 (62.5%)

I'm curious to see how Indiana plays against Michigan's defense. They've played everyone tough this season, but continue to come up short against good teams (and Rutgers). They probably won't win, of course, which means they'll need to beat Maryland and Purdue to get to 6 wins. That's definitely doable, but Maryland has looked tougher lately and Purdue is a rivalry game. Basically, I'm saying anything could happen.

Maryland

Date Maryland Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Richmond FCS W
9/12 Home Bowling Green 32 L
9/19 Home South Florida 46 W
9/26 Away West Virginia 35 L
10/3 Home Michigan 11 L
10/10 Away Ohio State 12 L
10/24 Neutral Penn State 38 L
10/31 Away Iowa 16 L
11/7 Home Wisconsin 29 L
11/14 Away Michigan State 36 30%
11/21 Home Indiana 87 63%
11/28 Away Rutgers 96 54%

THOR+ Record: 7-1 (87.5%)

Maryland, on the other hand, is not going bowling this season. Their remaining motivation should be to not finish 0-8 in the Big Ten this season.

Michigan

Date Michigan Team Rank Projected Win%
9/3 Away Utah 22 L
9/12 Home Oregon State 102 W
9/19 Home UNLV 88 W
9/26 Home BYU 34 W
10/3 Away Maryland 76 W
10/10 Home Northwestern 63 W
10/17 Home Michigan State 36 L
10/31 Away Minnesota 79 W
11/7 Home Rutgers 96 W
11/14 Away Indiana 87 78%
11/21 Away Penn State 38 62%
11/28 Home Ohio State 12 62%

THOR+ Record: 8-1 (88.9%)

Michigan should send Nebraska a gift basket or something because the Wolverines are back in the race for the East.

Michigan State

Date Michigan State Team Rank Projected Win%
9/4 Away Western Michigan 77 W
9/12 Home Oregon 49 W
9/19 Home Air Force 66 W
9/26 Home Central Michigan 70 W
10/3 Home Purdue 84 W
10/10 Away Rutgers 96 W
10/17 Away Michigan 11 W
10/24 Home Indiana 87 W
11/7 Away Nebraska 50 L
11/14 Home Maryland 76 70%
11/21 Away Ohio State 12 24%
11/28 Home Penn State 38 58%

THOR+ Record: 8-1 (88.9%)

Since we don't have a meltdown in Nebraska to admire from a distance, let's check in on East Lansing:

Oh, Plaxico...

But it gets better, you guys. I won't embed here, but check out his Twitter timeline.* He really puts a lot of the Nebraska fans we've been making fun of this season to shame.

*In case he deletes those tweets before this gets posted, check out this.

Ohio State

Date Ohio State Team Rank Projected Win%
9/7 Away Virginia Tech 62 W
9/12 Home Hawai'i 109 W
9/19 Home Northern Illinois 53 W
9/26 Home Western Michigan 77 W
10/3 Away Indiana 87 W
10/10 Home Maryland 76 W
10/17 Home Penn State 38 W
10/24 Away Rutgers 96 W
11/7 Home Minnesota 79 W
11/14 Away Illinois 58 68%
11/21 Home Michigan State 36 76%
11/28 Away Michigan 11 38%

THOR+ Record: 9-0 (100%)

Ohio State is the current favorite in the East, but they are far from a sure thing. Of course, their outlook could improve next week, depending on how their offense looks with J.T. Barrett back under center.

Penn State

Date Penn State Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Away Temple 28 L
9/12 Home Buffalo 97 W
9/19 Home Rutgers 96 W
9/26 Home San Diego State 65 W
10/3 Home Army 101 W
10/10 Home Indiana 87 W
10/17 Away Ohio State 12 L
10/24 Neutral Maryland 76 W
10/31 Home Illinois 58 W
11/7 Away Northwestern 63 L
11/21 Home Michigan 11 38%
11/28 Away Michigan State 36 42%

THOR+ Record: 9-1 (90%)

Penn State really could have used that victory over Northwestern because they are potentially looking at a 7-5 season now with both Michigan teams being the only games left on the schedule. I wouldn't necessarily be all that surprised to see them pull off an upset in one of these games. But I wouldn't be surprised to see them lose both either.

Rutgers

Date Rutgers Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Norfolk State FCS W
9/12 Home Washington State 59 L
9/19 Away Penn State 38 L
9/26 Home Kansas 120 W
10/10 Home Michigan State 36 L
10/17 Away Indiana 87 W
10/24 Home Ohio State 12 L
10/31 Away Wisconsin 29 L
11/7 Away Michigan 11 L
11/14 Home Nebraska 50 37%
11/21 Away Army 101 45%
11/28 Home Maryland 76 46%

THOR+ Record: 6-2 (75%)

THOR+ currently has Army favored slightly against Rutgers? That's non-Leonte Carroo Rutgers, yes. With Carroo back, though, they should win. Even without him, I would hope they could beat Army. I mean, it's not like they're playing Navy. They would definitely lose that game.