Big Ten Power Rankings: MSU football jumps up, new top team in latest power rankings

The Spartans are clearly a resilient bunch.

Michigan State picked up a massive win over Illinois on Saturday afternoon as a more than two-touchdown underdog. The win came after a week full of distractions following the tunnel scuffle at Michigan and eight players being suspended.

So how far do the Spartans move up in our updated power rankings? See where I rank Michigan State and the rest of the Big Ten teams in this week’s Big Ten power rankings:

Northwestern

Record:  1-8 (1-5 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss vs. Ohio State

Next game: at Minnesota (Nov. 12)

Northwestern played the Buckeyes extremely tough in a two-touchdown loss on Saturday. But the weather certainly helped them and is why I still have them as our bottom team in the power rankings.

Indiana

Record:  3-6 (1-5 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss vs. Penn State

Next game: at Ohio State (Nov. 12)

Indiana is really doing their best effort to challenge Northwestern for the last-place spot in our power rankings. Another performance like this week’s and they may just grab that this time next week.

Rutgers

Record: 4-5 (1-5 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss vs. Michigan

Next game: at Michigan State (Nov. 12)

Rutgers looked like a team destined for an upset in the first half of Saturday night’s game against Michigan. Then the second half began and they came back to reality as the Wolverines trounced the Scarlet Knights.

Nebraska

Record: 3-6 (2-4 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss vs. Minnesota

Next game: at Michigan (Nov. 12)

This was a make-or-break kind of week for Nebraska if they were going to reach a bowl game, and things didn’t go their way. They had a fast start but the wheels came off late in yet another loss for the Cornhuskers.

Purdue

Record: 5-4 (3-3 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss vs. Iowa

Next game: at Illinois (Nov. 12)

What happened to Purdue? The Boilermakers were blown out for a second straight game, this time at home to an Iowa team that struggles to get any offensive momentum. Things appear to be going south for Purdue right now.

Maryland

Record: 6-3 (3-3 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss at Wisconsin

Next game: at Penn State (Nov. 12)

The real Maryland has officially arrived. The fast start to the season last a few weeks longer this year in College Park, Md. but the annual fall of the Terrapins is starting now. The weather conditions didn’t help Maryland’s case on Saturday, but this looks like a team that may not win another game this year.

Iowa

Record: 5-4 (3-3 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win at Purdue

Next game: vs. Wisconsin (Nov. 12)

Iowa is pretty darn good when they can get just a little bit of juice from its offense. We saw that on Saturday in their win over the Boilermakers, and we are starting to see the full potential of the Hawkeyes as we hit the final stretch of the year.

Minnesota

Record: 6-3 (3-3 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win at Nebraska

Next game: vs. Northwestern (Nov. 12)

Minnesota picked up a solid win on Saturday after falling behind early against Nebraska. The Golden Gophers are officially bowl eligible but even more important is they still have an outside chance to win the wide open Big Ten West Division.

Illinois

Record: 7-2 (3-2 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Loss vs. Michigan State

Next game: vs. Purdue (Nov. 12)

This was a bad loss for the Fighting Illini and I currently feel like I was tricked by Illinois’ great start. Michigan State was an easy target after the week they went through and Illinois still found themselves chasing the whole game.

Michigan State

Record: 4-5 (2-4 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win at Illinois

Next game: vs. Rutgers (Nov. 12)

That was a big win for the Spartans. Massive for a program that needed it badly after this past week. The healthier Spartans are a much better team than we saw early in the year and one that probably would have a few more wins had this been the team they put on the field in those matchups.

Wisconsin

Record: 5-4 (3-3 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win vs. Maryland

Next game: at Iowa (Nov. 12)

Wisconsin would be the clear cut favorite to win the Big Ten West Division had it fired Paul Chryst one week sooner. The Badgers are continuing to play extremely well under interim head coach Jim Leonhard and look like one of the best teams in the conference right now.

Penn State

Record: 7-2 (3-2 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win at Indiana

Next game: vs. Maryland (Nov. 12)

Penn State bounced back from last week’s disappointing finish against Ohio State with a blowout win over Indiana. The Nittany Lions are a really good team that is simply not good as the top two teams in this league. Very similar to the Spartans from last year.

Ohio State

Record: 9-0 (6-0 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win at Northwestern

Next game: vs. Indiana (Nov. 12)

For the first time this year I have moved Ohio State out of the top spot in our power rankings. The Buckeyes offense is the issue here with them being clearly so one dimensional that if they run into Michigan on another snowy or bad weather day in late November that they go down again.

Michigan

Record: 9-0 (6-0 in Big Ten)

This week’s result: Win at Rutgers

Next game: vs. Nebraska (Nov. 12)

Michigan is the new top team in our power rankings. Do I think Michigan’s good is better than Ohio State’s good? No. But the Wolverines are more consistent than the Buckeyes and if they are fortunate enough to get another bad weather game vs. Ohio State than it feels like they’ll win that rivalry matchup again.

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Story originally appeared on Spartans Wire