Yikes. Last week wasn’t exactly a banner week for most of us, between Ohio State beating Iowa (which was great), Nebraska losing to Northwestern, and Maryland losing to Rutgers. Most of us dropped heavily in the standings, and although we touted separation at the top last week, Jordan himself came crashing back down to the pack after a bad week of games.
This week, however? We really disagreed on a handful of games, including the battle for the Heartland Trophy, Purdue vs. Northwestern, and MSU vs OSU. Of course, there are your usual stinkers, and Illinois vs. Indiana is going to be horrendous. I recommend using that time to do anything else.
Here are the updated standings coming into the week:
Jordan Hansen: 66-18
Max Brekke: 64-20
Rob Donaldson: 54-17
Hello Jerry: 62-22
JP Scott: 62-22
Ben Ross: 54-30
Now let’s get to it:
#13 Michigan State at #12 Ohio State - 11am on FOX
Max: This is the beginning of a great day of games, and this should live up to the billing early on. Michigan State has done the majority of their damage against good teams at home this year (they’ve only beaten Minnesota and Michigan on the road) and I think this is going to be a huge road test for Sparty. Unfortunately for them, I think Ohio State takes them down and that officially knocks the Big Ten out of the playoff. Ohio State 34, Michigan State 21.
JPinIC: I have a feeling things in the meeting rooms around Columbus have not gone well this week. It’s not hard to envision a Buckeye team that comes out angry Saturday. And has anyone really been impressed with Michigan State this year? Yeah they took down PSU last week, but I still have major doubts. OSU 38, MSU 28
JP Scott: The Buckeyes don’t have it in them to handle the scrappiness the Spartans are going to bring to the table. Gimme Michigan State, 30-20.
Hello Jerry: I believe in Sparty going into the Shoe and getting the job done. 32-27, The Fighting Dantonio’s
Matt: 27-24, MSU, according to my friend John, who says “Both teams head into the week with their Big Ten Championship hopes on the line. Ohio State looks to rebound after an absolute shellacking last week, and they put up a good performance this week, but it’s not enough enough to beat the Spartans. Lewerke continues his streak of strong performances, while the turnover bug bites Ohio State again. Turnovers are the difference and Sparty comes out on top.”
Ben: Sparty on Wayne.
Rob Donaldson: The Buckeyes got embarrassed and now they’re going to take it out on Sparty. Ohio State 35, Michigan State 24
BoilerHawk: Ohio State 28 - MSU 14.
Jordan: I’ve got a feeling... and it’s a Buckeye revenge game.
Rutgers at #14 Penn State - 11am on BTN
Max: Penn State has lost two consecutive games. Penn State gonna be angry. Poor rutger. Penn State 47, rutger 13.
JPinIC: Well look at that, Rutgers is in the same universe as bowl eligibility! This week doesn’t help. PSU 45, Rutgers 17
JP Scott: Saquon jumps back to the top of the Heisman race with a monster game. Penn State 52-14.
Hello Jerry: Penn State already has more NewJersey fans than Rutgers. Lions, 48-17
Matt: 56-20, Penn State. RIP Rutgers, we hardly knew thee.
Ben: Why is Rutgers?
Rob Donaldson: Rutgers fans… I’m so sorry for what you’re about to witness. Penn State 45, Rutgers 10
BoilerHawk: Penn State 39 - Rutgers 14
Jordan: If Penn State doesn’t win this game kick them out of the Big Ten.
Indiana at Illinois - 11am on BTN
Max: How could you possibly pick ILOLinois to win a game? Indiana 24, Illinois 13.
JPinIC: It’s week 11 and Illinois is still a dumpster fire. Indiana 35, Illinois 24
JP Scott: Indiana is just more talented everywhere. Hoosiers win 38-13
Hello Jerry: Do Indiana or Illinois fans even want to attend this game? Hoosiers 27-13.
Matt: 27-17, Indiana. Illinois is very bad at football.
Rob Donaldson: No chance I’ll be watching this game. Indiana 31, Illinois 17
BoilerHawk: ILLINOIS 14 - Indiana 13
Jordan: Indiana should win this game. They really should.
Nebraska at Minnesota - 11am on FS1
Max: Another game that probably shouldn’t be very good, but I guess it should be competitive? I’m going to take the Huskers in this one, only on account of the fact that the Gophers can’t score at all. Nebraska 27, Minnesota 13.
JPinIC: Can they both lose? I really want nothing more than to see both these teams end the season with fewer than 6 wins. Ugh. I’ll take MInny 24, Nebraska 17.
JP Scott: Nebraska hasn’t scored a rushing touchdown since September. I don’t think that changes. Mike Riley is about to get his boat rowed. Gophers 20-14.
Hello Jerry: The Gophers are still not fun to watch and they still cannot score. Nebby 21-13.
Matt: 24-21, Minnesota. The Big Ten is a very bad football conference this year.
Ben: This game is so, so sad. Give me Minnesota, because they’re trending up while Nebraska … isn’t.
Rob Donaldson: Give me Minnesota. Row the boat! Minnesota 24, Nebraska 21
BoilerHawk: Home field tips this one… Minnesota 16 - Nebraska 12
Jordan: I’ll take the dying corn.
#20 Iowa at #8 Wisconsin - 2:30pm on ABC
Max: The most important game of the season for the Big Ten. Will Iowa be able to knock off the Badgers and effectively knock them out of the playoff picture, or will Wisconsin continue their march towards becoming this year’s version of the 2017 Hawkeyes? Oh buddy. Iowa 27, Wisconsin 24.
JPinIC: I want to believe so bad. I want to see this team come out firing on all cylinders again. I’m the eternal optimist, but I am also at least mildly supersticious. Wisconsin 20, Iowa 17
JP Scott: I’m all in. I think it clicked. Let’s go Hawks. Iowa wins big, 34-17.
Hello Jerry: IOWA IS WINNING THIS GAME AND KIRK ISN’T GOING TO CHANGE BRIAN AND EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE GREAT AND I LOVE IOWA FOOTBALL. Hawkeyes 56-13.
Matt: 21-17, Wisconsin. The last two times I’ve picked Iowa to lose, they’ve won, so...you’re welcome?
Ben: What Jerry said. Also, what Matt said? Shit.
Rob Donaldson: I truly believe that Iowa is winning this game. Then again, I truly believed Iowa would lose last week… I don’t know what to think. Give me the Hawks! Iowa 17, Wisconsin 14
BoilerHawk: Wisconsin 17 - Iowa 14
Jordan: Badgers in a heartbreaker.
Michigan at Maryland - 2:30pm on BTN
Max: Michigan isn’t the team we thought they were at the beginning of the season, but Maryland is likely on their fourth string quarterback. No way he stands a chance against Jabrill Peppers and the Wolverine defense. Michigan 31, Maryland 6.
JPinIC: Maryland just lost to Rutgers in the relegation game. Anyone taking them over Michigan? Didn’t think so. Michigan 42, Maryland 17
JP Scott: This might be closer than many expect. I still like Michigan, 27-20.
Hello Jerry: While I would love for Michigan to lose this game so the Harbaugh to the Bears rumors get hotter, there’s just no way that happens. Wolverines 24-17.
Matt: 27-21, Michigan. MARYLAND YOU LET ME DOWN AND I AM SAD :(
Ben: If a backup quarterback falls in the forest, would Maryland hear it?
Rob Donaldson: Michigan should stomp this Maryland team, but let’s be real. They probably won’t. Michigan 28, Maryland 24
BoilerHawk: Michigan 24 - Maryland 20
Purdue at #25 Northwestern - 6pm on ESPN2
Max: Hahahahahahahahahaha look at how everyone turned their backs on the Boilermakers. I am validated. Northwestern 31, Purdue 20.
JPinIC: Part of me is hoping Purdue is dead (I know, I know, we were this close to being a Purdue blog!) because I think they have the potential to cause Iowa problems, but I feel like the way this season works out is Northwestern manages to blow this one. Purdue 31, Northwestern 30
JP Scott: Like Iowa, I think Northwestern has this thing figured out. Gimme the fightin’ Fitzgerlds 27-20 in OT.
Hello Jerry: Like RenBoss, I am DONE with Purdue. I will never pick them or gamble on them again (at least until conference hoops starts). Gimme Northwestern 27-17.
Matt: 24-17, Purdue. I STILL LOVE YOU PURDUE AND I DON’T CARE ABOUT WINNING THIS COMPETITION ANYMORE!
Ben: I am so over Purdue.
Rob Donaldson: Purdue is NOT who we thought they were! Northwestern 24, Purdue 14
BoilerHawk: Purdue is proving the cupboard to be as bare as we thought coming into the season. They just don’t have the horses for a 9 game conference slate. Northwestern 21 - Purdue 16
Jordan: Purdue. This feels like a classic Northwestern letdown game.