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BIG TEN WIN PROJECTIONS: POST-WEEK 2

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Projected wins for each Big Ten team after week 2.

Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

Another week, another round of win projections. Let's dive on into them, shall we?

Win Projections: Post-Week 2

THOR+ Rank B1G West Season Wins 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 Wisconsin 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.3% 1.2% 4.2% 15.6% 28.4% 30.0% 17.0% 3.3% 0.0%
34 Nebraska 0.1% 0.1% 1.2% 4.6% 14.5% 23.1% 25.8% 18.4% 9.9% 2.2% 0.1% 0.0%
35 Illinois 0.0% 0.0% 0.7% 5.1% 12.9% 22.9% 25.1% 22.0% 8.5% 2.3% 0.5% 0.0%
47 Iowa 0.0% 0.0% 0.1% 0.9% 5.2% 12.9% 23.0% 27.8% 19.0% 8.8% 2.1% 0.2%
51 Northwestern 0.0% 0.0% 0.3% 2.7% 10.5% 22.3% 25.2% 23.7% 11.2% 3.4% 0.6% 0.1%
56 Minnesota 0.1% 0.8% 4.4% 12.6% 23.4% 26.5% 19.5% 9.6% 3.0% 0.1% 0.0% 0.0%
71 Purdue 0.1% 2.1% 9.3% 24.4% 25.8% 21.9% 10.6% 4.7% 0.9% 0.2% 0.0% 0.0%
THOR+ Rank B1G East Season Wins 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
4 Ohio State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 1.0% 5.4% 15.2% 32.7% 31.9% 13.8%
16 Michigan State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.1% 0.3% 1.9% 8.4% 22.3% 33.4% 22.8% 10.0% 0.8%
27 Michigan 0.0% 0.0% 0.2% 1.1% 5.5% 13.9% 25.5% 26.5% 19.1% 7.6% 0.6% 0.0%
63 Penn State 0.0% 0.4% 3.7% 8.9% 21.6% 28.1% 23.3% 10.9% 2.5% 0.6% 0.0% 0.0%
80 Maryland 0.9% 6.4% 17.9% 31.7% 23.2% 14.6% 4.3% 1.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
82 Rutgers 0.6% 3.4% 12.8% 26.3% 24.9% 20.2% 8.7% 2.5% 0.6% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
96 Indiana 0.0% 2.7% 10.1% 24.3% 26.0% 24.9% 9.1% 2.1% 0.6% 0.2% 0.0% 0.0%

Really, not much changed from last week. Wisconsin should have the best record in the West, but has no shot at going undefeated, thanks to Nick Saban. Iowa's odds went from 0.1% to 0.2% at completing an undefeated season (NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP, HERE WE COME), while Northwestern managed to also sneak an unbeaten campaign into the simulations, on the projected strength of their defense.

Overall, though, Ohio State still has the best shot at going 12-0 (14%). And Michigan State has a chance, but their odds really didn't go up after beating Oregon. Although, their chances at 11 wins went up by 6 percentage points.

THOR+ Rank B1G West Conference Wins 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
13 Wisconsin 0.0% 0.1% 0.5% 3.7% 12.8% 27.1% 31.9% 20.4% 3.5%
34 Nebraska 0.3% 0.9% 5.5% 15.8% 26.0% 26.9% 16.9% 6.9% 0.8%
35 Illinois 0.8% 5.0% 13.7% 26.4% 29.9% 17.3% 5.6% 1.3% 0.0%
47 Iowa 0.1% 1.5% 8.4% 18.8% 31.3% 24.1% 12.8% 2.6% 0.4%
51 Northwestern 0.3% 2.7% 11.1% 24.1% 29.6% 23.2% 7.1% 1.6% 0.3%
56 Minnesota 1.4% 8.8% 19.7% 29.1% 24.7% 12.0% 4.2% 0.1% 0.0%
71 Purdue 1.9% 10.3% 24.9% 33.2% 18.7% 8.4% 2.3% 0.3% 0.0%
THOR+ Rank B1G East Conference Wins 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
4 Ohio State 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.5% 4.1% 13.3% 32.4% 34.2% 15.5%
16 Michigan State 0.0% 0.1% 0.5% 6.0% 19.2% 34.7% 26.4% 12.2% 0.9%
27 Michigan 0.0% 0.2% 2.5% 9.5% 24.8% 26.4% 24.6% 10.5% 1.5%
63 Penn State 0.1% 3.8% 14.1% 30.1% 29.0% 17.0% 4.9% 1.0% 0.0%
80 Maryland 2.2% 14.7% 32.9% 27.9% 16.3% 5.1% 0.9% 0.0% 0.0%
82 Rutgers 2.9% 15.8% 28.5% 25.9% 18.9% 6.8% 1.1% 0.1% 0.0%
96 Indiana 6.8% 20.7% 33.5% 25.3% 10.1% 2.8% 0.5% 0.3% 0.0%

Basically, everything I just said above applies to the conference schedule to this date. No chaos has been introduced quite yet, so Ohio State and Wisconsin are still our clear outright favorites for the Big Ten Championship game.

Lastly, here are the projected mean, min and max wins for each Big Ten team.

THOR+ Rank B1G West Mean Wins Min. Wins Max. Wins Mean B1G Wins Min B1G Wins Max B1G Wins
13 Wisconsin 8.4 4 11 5.6 1 8
34 Nebraska 6.7 1 11 4.5 0 8
35 Illinois 6.8 3 11 3.6 0 7
47 Iowa 7.8 3 12 4.2 0 8
51 Northwestern 7.1 3 12 3.9 0 8
56 Minnesota 5.8 1 10 3.2 0 7
71 Purdue 5.1 1 10 2.9 0 7
THOR+ Rank B1G East Mean Wins Min. Wins Max. Wins Mean B1G Wins Min B1G Wins Max B1G Wins
4 Ohio State 10.3 7 12 6.4 3 8
16 Michigan State 9.0 4 12 5.2 1 8
27 Michigan 7.6 3 11 5.0 1 8
63 Penn State 6.0 2 10 3.6 0 7
80 Maryland 4.4 1 8 2.6 0 6
82 Rutgers 4.8 1 9 2.7 0 7
96 Indiana 5.0 2 10 2.2 0 7

Big Ten West

Iowa

Date Iowa Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Illinios State FCS W
9/12 Away Iowa State 69 W
9/19 Home Pittsburgh 55 65%
9/26 Home North Texas 116 90%
10/3 Away Wisconsin 13 20%
10/10 Home Illinois 35 57%
10/17 Away Northwestern 51 38%
10/31 Home Maryland 80 78%
11/7 Away Indiana 96 62%
11/14 Home Minnesota 56 66%
11/21 Home Purdue 71 74%
11/27 Away Nebraska 34 30%

Looking at mean wins above, our beloved Hawkeyes are the biggest winners of week 2, as they earned a whole win on their projections after beating Iowa State in Jack Trice Stadium. Last week their mean win total sat at 6.8, but this week it sits at 7.8. 8 wins is now the most likely outcome for the season (although, 7 wins is a close second), and if they can put together a nice performance against Pittsburgh this Saturday, that could go a long ways toward getting them closer to looking at a 9-win season.

Illinois

Date Illinois Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Kent State 123 W
9/12 Home W. Illinois FCS W
9/19 Away North Carolina 39 41%
9/26 Home Middle Tennessee 84 83%
10/3 Home Nebraska 34 64%
10/10 Away Iowa 47 43%
10/24 Home Wisconsin 13 54%
10/31 Away Penn State 63 52%
11/7 Away Purdue 71 56%
11/14 Home Ohio State 4 41%
11/21 Away Minnesota 56 46%
11/28 Neutral Northwestern 51 58%

Illinois' shellacking of two very bad teams early on has turned their schedule from very red to very green. That being said, those green games are still 50/50 ones that could very well not go their way. This team could definitely surprise, but they could still disappoint too. This week's match up with North Carolina should give us a better idea of which one it could be.

Minnesota

Date Minnesota Team Rank Projected Win%
9/3 Home TCU 9 L
9/12 Away Colorado State 59 W
9/19 Home Kent State 123 92%
9/26 Home Ohio 77 73%
10/3 Away Northwestern 51 35%
10/10 Away Purdue 71 47%
10/17 Home Nebraska 34 53%
10/31 Home Michigan 27 51%
11/7 Away Ohio State 4 8%
11/14 Away Iowa 47 34%
11/21 Home Illinois 35 54%
11/28 Home Wisconsin 13 43%

After a rough first two weeks, the Gophers get a terrible Kent State team at home. Illinois already laid the smack down on the Golden Flashes in week 1. We should probably expect Minnesota to do the same in week 3.

Nebraska

Date Nebraska Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home BYU 37 L
9/12 Home South Alabama 122 W
9/19 Away Miami (Florida) 25 31%
9/26 Home Southern Mississippi 109 90%
10/3 Away Illinois 35 36%
10/10 Home Wisconsin 13 54%
10/17 Away Minnesota 56 47%
10/24 Home Northwestern 51 71%
10/31 Away Purdue 71 57%
11/7 Home Michigan State 16 56%
11/14 Away Rutgers 82 61%
11/28 Home Iowa 47 70%

South Alabama was a nice scrimmage after the BYU letdown, but week 3 sees Mike Riley's Huskers hit the road for the first time this season against the Hurricanes of Miami. That means Nebraska could be looking at a 1-2 start to the 2015 season. That also means that someone in Hastings, Nebraska is likely going to buy the domain "FireMikeRiley.com" Saturday night.

Northwestern

Date Northwestern Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Stanford 23 W
9/12 Home Eastern Illinois FCS W
9/19 Away Duke 46 35%
9/26 Home Ball State 100 84%
10/3 Home Minnesota 56 65%
10/10 Away Michigan 27 26%
10/17 Home Iowa 47 62%
10/24 Away Nebraska 34 29%
11/7 Home Penn State 63 70%
11/14 Home Purdue 71 73%
11/21 Away Wisconsin 13 19%
11/28 Neutral Illinois 35 42%

It's hard to say this week's game against Duke is Northwestern's biggest game of the 2015 season, but it definitely is the biggest game they've played to date. If they can find a way to beat Duke in Durham, barring a major crapping of the bed against Ball State, there should be absolutely no reason they don't enter the Big Ten season 4-0.

Purdue

Date Purdue Team Rank Projected Win%
9/6 Away Marshall 58 L
9/12 Home Indiana State FCS W
9/19 Home Virginia Tech 49 46%
9/26 Home Bowling Green 90 71%
10/3 Away Michigan State 16 14%
10/10 Home Minnesota 56 53%
10/17 Away Wisconsin 13 13%
10/31 Home Nebraska 34 43%
11/7 Home Illinois 35 44%
11/14 Away Northwestern 51 27%
11/21 Away Iowa 47 26%
11/28 Home Indiana 96 74%

Austin Appleby is guaranteed to throw like a million picks against Virginia Tech's defense this weekend, right? And that Bowling Green game next week suddenly looks a lot less winnable, 71% THOR+ win probability be damned.

Wisconsin

Date Wisconsin Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Neutral Alabama 3 L
9/12 Home Miami (Ohio) 120 W
9/19 Home Troy 98 93%
9/26 Home Hawai'i 91 91%
10/3 Home Iowa 47 80%
10/10 Away Nebraska 34 46%
10/17 Home Purdue 71 87%
10/24 Away Illinois 35 46%
10/31 Home Rutgers 82 89%
11/7 Away Maryland 80 70%
11/21 Home Northwestern 51 81%
11/28 Away Minnesota 56 57%

Wisconsin beat Miami of Ohio 58-0 this past weekend. We can probably expect similar things this week and next.

Big Ten East

Indiana

Date Indiana Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home S. Illinois FCS W
9/12 Home Florida International 83 W
9/19 Home Western Kentucky 66 48%
9/26 Away Wake Forest 72 27%
10/3 Home Ohio State 4 16%
10/10 Away Penn State 63 23%
10/17 Home Rutgers 82 57%
10/24 Away Michigan State 16 9%
11/7 Home Iowa 47 38%
11/14 Home Michigan 27 30%
11/21 Away Maryland 80 30%
11/28 Away Purdue 71 26%

Indiana has gotten all they could handle from Southern Illinois and Florida International to begin this season and now Western Kentucky comes to Bloomington. This is a game the Hoosiers could easily lose. But at least it should be a fun offensive show to watch.

Maryland

Date Maryland Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Richmond FCS W
9/12 Home Bowling Green 90 L
9/19 Home South Florida 79 61%
9/26 Away West Virginia 22 14%
10/3 Home Michigan 27 37%
10/10 Away Ohio State 4 5%
10/24 Neutral Penn State 63 41%
10/31 Away Iowa 47 22%
11/7 Home Wisconsin 13 30%
11/14 Away Michigan State 16 12%
11/21 Home Indiana 96 70%
11/28 Away Rutgers 82 37%

Last week I said:

Maryland fans should cherish the next couple of weeks. It could get ugly quick.

As it turns out, I was right on the latter. Not so much on the former.

Michigan

Date Michigan Team Rank Projected Win%
9/3 Away Utah 40 L
9/12 Home Oregon State 87 W
9/19 Home UNLV 118 93%
9/26 Home BYU 37 68%
10/3 Away Maryland 80 63%
10/10 Home Northwestern 51 74%
10/17 Home Michigan State 16 59%
10/31 Away Minnesota 56 49%
11/7 Home Rutgers 82 85%
11/14 Away Indiana 96 70%
11/21 Away Penn State 63 55%
11/28 Home Ohio State 4 45%

The Fightin' Harbaughs did what they were supposed to against a bad Oregon State team last weekend. This weekend they get another week off. Wake me up next weekend.

Michigan State

Date Michigan State Team Rank Projected Win%
9/4 Away Western Michigan 85 W
9/12 Home Oregon 18 W
9/19 Home Air Force 75 87%
9/26 Home Central Michigan 97 91%
10/3 Home Purdue 71 86%
10/10 Away Rutgers 82 69%
10/17 Away Michigan 27 41%
10/24 Home Indiana 96 91%
11/7 Away Nebraska 34 44%
11/14 Home Maryland 80 88%
11/21 Away Ohio State 4 16%
11/28 Home Penn State 63 84%

Mark Dantonio's Spartans earned themselves an impressive win over Oregon in week 2, and now they don't play anybody for like a month. Hooray!

Ohio State

Date Ohio State Team Rank Projected Win%
9/7 Away Virginia Tech 49 W
9/12 Home Hawai'i 91 W
9/19 Home Northern Illinois 61 93%
9/26 Home Western Michigan 85 95%
10/3 Away Indiana 96 84%
10/10 Home Maryland 80 95%
10/17 Home Penn State 63 93%
10/24 Away Rutgers 82 80%
11/7 Home Minnesota 56 92%
11/14 Away Illinois 35 59%
11/21 Home Michigan State 16 84%
11/28 Away Michigan 27 55%

Speaking of not playing anybody for a month, Ohio State doesn't really play anybody until November. I wonder if Bret Bielema will have any schedule-related comments for the Buckeyes this week?

Penn State

Date Penn State Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Away Temple 26 L
9/12 Home Buffalo 105 W
9/19 Home Rutgers 82 71%
9/26 Home San Diego State 88 74%
10/3 Home Army 108 83%
10/10 Home Indiana 96 77%
10/17 Away Ohio State 4 7%
10/24 Neutral Maryland 80 59%
10/31 Home Illinois 35 48%
11/7 Away Northwestern 51 30%
11/21 Home Michigan 27 45%
11/28 Away Michigan State 16 16%

Despite losing to Temple in week 1, there really isn't much of an excuse for Penn State not to be 5-1 when they play Ohio State in mid-October, right?

Rutgers

Date Rutgers Team Rank Projected Win%
9/5 Home Norfolk State FCS W
9/12 Home Washington State 78 L
9/19 Away Penn State 63 29%
9/26 Home Kansas 121 85%
10/10 Home Michigan State 16 31%
10/17 Away Indiana 96 43%
10/24 Home Ohio State 4 20%
10/31 Away Wisconsin 13 11%
11/7 Away Michigan 27 15%
11/14 Home Nebraska 34 39%
11/21 Away Army 108 50%
11/28 Home Maryland 80 63%

Rutgers is a damn mess right now. Not only did they lose half their secondary to illegal activity before the season and just blow a winnable game to a Washington State team that lost to Portland State in week 1, but now they are without their star wide receiver for the Penn State contest and for who knows how much longer. At this rate, we have to wonder if Kyle Flood will even make it through November.