I’m not sure many people expected what happened this past weekend in the Big Ten. The one-loss Ohio State Buckeyes were heading into Iowa for a game against the unranked Hawkeyes, and Saquon Barkley and Penn State were expected to bounce back from their close loss to OSU, against a better than expected Michigan State team on the road.
But both of these Big Ten heavyweights were on the short end of the score and now have another loss on their record. For the Buckeyes, it was their first Big Ten conference loss while the Nittany Lions now have two. Ohio State has a non-conference loss to Oklahoma on their record and are now tied for the lead in the Big Ten Eastern Conference at 5-1 with their next opponent, the Michigan State Spartans, on home turf this Saturday.
For Penn State, there is some good news. After losing their last two conference games, they finish the season against three unranked Big Ten opponents in Rutgers, Nebraska and Maryland. At 7-2, the Nittany Lions are looking to finish strong at 10-2 and see where they end up.
And don’t sleep on the surprising Spartans. If they can get past the Buckeyes this weekend, they will have the inside track to the Big Ten championship game. Mark Dantonio’s team would have a home game against Maryland and a road contest at Rutgers to end the regular season.
But there is another team in the East that has a 7-2 overall record and a 4-2 mark in the conference. That would be the Michigan Wolverines. However, with losses to both the Spartans and Nittany Lions, they would have a tough road to the championship. But you can bet they are targeting their November 25th matchup against the Buckeyes to help make their season.
Then there’s Western Conference of the Big Ten. Although not many people are talking about them, the Wisconsin Badgers have yet to lose a game all year. Sure they didn’t have the Buckeyes, Spartans and Nittany Lions on this year’s schedule, but you can only play who they tell you too. Still, they are a virtual lock to get to the title game. A home game against the Wolverines on November 18th will be one to watch.
So if things seem pretty clear in the West, they are definitely a bit murky in the East. With three weeks to go in the regular season, one things for sure