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Big Ten Football Power Rankings: Week 13

This week is dedicated to someone special

Michigan State v Ohio State Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images


For the first time since 2015, Iowa has the chance to achieve a ten-win regular season with one game to go. I waxed on this phenomenon in a comment yesterday, and I’m not going to harp on it much further here. The gist of it is this: if you told me Iowa would win 10 games before bowl season, I’d take that seven days a week and twice on Sunday. And if you wouldn’t, you’re a liar.

Elsewhere around the country, we saw Texas lose its sixth game in a row for the first time since an era when no one was afraid of communism.

I started my day watching a monumental ass kicking (more on that in moment) and ended it in the same manner. Utah just buried Oregon’s hopes of making it to the playoff, returning the favor the Ducks completed for the Utes back in 2019. I’m writing this from Pac-12 country and the football hits different here.

I had a ham-fisted comparison of the Utes to Iowa here, but then my niece hit the keyboard while I left the room and you’re just going to have to subscribe to my Onlyfans to get a peak behind that curtain.

On to the funny business.

1. Ohio State (10-1, 8-0)

The last time I saw Michiganders take a beating like that they were demanding the other team stop counting points. When you’re down 49-0 at half, what can you do other than protest the outcome?

2. Michigan (10-1, 7-1)

If Michigan pulls off the upset this week, give Harbaugh a statue and a lifetime contract. There’s no intelligent punditry to be had leading up this contest as both teams engaged in tickle fights this week.

To me, the catalyst is probably this: one side has CJ Stroud and Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson and Jaxon Smith-Njigba, and the other does not.

3. Wisconsin (8-3, 6-2)

Sure, the Big Ten West leader deserves to be here, whatever. More than anything, I just can’t in good conscience rank Michigan State any higher than what I end up deciding to rank them.

4. Iowa (9-2, 6-2)

Do I think Iowa is better than Michigan State? I don’t know. Do I think Iowa would put up more of a fight than Sparty did against Ohio State? I also don’t know, but I do know what happened last time Iowa and Ohio State played, which resulted in an outcome many often forget about.

5. Michigan State (9-2, 6-2)

I was pretty encouraged when I heard the rumors that Mel Tucker was getting something like a 10-year, 95 million dollar deal. I figured a rising tide lifts all boats, and that’d put Iowa in a position to aim higher when it eventually engages in a coaching search.

But now, I’m ECSTATIC to learn that getting pantsed on national television to the class of your conference will result in a big contract extension, putting the Big Ten one step closer to the SEC in that regard.

6. Nerbaska (3-8, 1-7)

I’m putting Nerbaska here because it’s my blog and I can do what I want. More importantly, it’s what Milton A. Munson Jr. would’ve wanted:

A gentleman who was not long for this earth. He will be missed.

7. Minnesota (7-4, 5-3)

I’m glad to see Minnesota took its turn with Indiana and passed that test with flying colors. Like Nerbaska, I’m putting the Gophers higher than I should for similar reasons: I don’t want Iowa to take the Skers lightly (I don’t think the staff will) and I want the Goofs to take it to Wisconsin (I don’t think that will happen, either).

8. Purdue (7-4, 5-3)

Putting them here for beating the pants off these nerds.

9. Penn State (7-4, 4-4)

Did y’all know Frank Gore’s son is the quarterback for Southern Miss? You didn’t know that, because he’s actually their running back, but started at QB this week because the Golden Eagles (?) have serious QB issues at the moment.

He finished with 75 yards and 2 touchdowns on 4-8 passing, leading Southern Miss to an upset win as 15 12 point underdogs over Louisiana Tech.

10. Rutgers (5-6, 2-6)

Rutgers goes here because it is just one win away from bowl eligibility, which is a statistical anomaly at this point. In my lifetime, Rutgers has been to a bowl game just nine times, with six of those opportunities coming under Greg Schiano.

11. Maryland (5-6, 2-6)

Has only been to a bowl game 10 times in my lifetime.

12. Northwestern (3-8, 1-7)

Fifteen times in my life.

13. Indiana (2-9, 0-8)

Just six times! SIX! I’m starting to think relegation is the best medicine for hiring Tom Allen.

14. Illinois (4-7, 3-5)

I don’t think Illinois is the worst team in the Big Ten by any stretch, but I forgot about them and I simply cannot be bothered to hit copy and paste for the sake of Illinois football.

And in case you were wondering, Illinois has been to a bowl game nine times since I’ve been on this rock.