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Around the Big Ten & Power Rankings: Week 8

Catch up on all the Week 8 action in the Big Ten

Jamie Sabau

1. Michigan State (6-1)

The Spartans took care of business on Saturday, defeating Indiana 56-17. It was close at first, with the Hoosiers taking 17-14 lead in the second quarter, but it was all Michigan State the rest of the way. Connor Cook threw three touchdown passes and an interception across 332 yards and Jeremy Langford rushed for three scores. Nick Hill added 178 rushing yards and a touchdown. The Spartans held the ball for over 39 minutes of play and outgained the Hoosiers 662-224.

Michigan State hosts Michigan on Saturday.

2. Ohio State (5-1)

The Buckeyes handled Rutgers similarly to how they handled Maryland, only this game was played in Columbus. The 56-17 win was Ohio State's 18th straight Big Ten regular-season win, and all 56 of the Buckeyes' points came in the first three quarters. J.T. Barrett threw for three touchdowns and ran for another two, and OSU racked up 585 yards of total offense.

OSU now heads to State College to take on Penn State.

3. Nebraska (6-1)

The Cornhuskers came from behind to beat Northwestern on the road, 38-17. After training 17-14 at halftime, Nebraska held the Wildcats scoreless in the second half. Tommy Armstrong Jr. threw for 221 yards, and even caught a TD on a play where freshman WR De'Mornay Pierson-El threw him a 16-yard score. Ameer Abdullah ran for four touchdowns (all of which were 1-yard runs) and 146 yards on 23 carries.

Nebraska hosts Rutgers on Saturday.

4. Minnesota (6-1)

The Golden Gophers needed a second half comeback to beat Purdue, but squeaked by the Boilermakers, 39-38. After falling behind by 11 at halftime, Minnesota outscored Purdue 19-7 in the second half. Ryan Santoso hit what became the game-winning 52-yard field goal with five minutes to play, and Cedric Thompson intercepted Purdue's Austin Appleby twice. Mitch Leidner threw for 165 yards and two TDs, while running for a third.

It was the first time in 23 games under coach Jerry Kill that Minnesota came back from a halftime deficit to win. It's also the first time the Gophers have started Big Ten play 3-0 since 1990.

Minnesota plays at Illinois this weekend.

5. Wisconsin (4-2)

The Badgers were off in Week 8. They'll host the Terps on Saturday.

6. Maryland (5-2)

7. Iowa (5-2)

The Hawkeyes were handed their first Big Ten loss by the Terps in a 38-31 road defeat. Iowa has a bye this weekend.

8. Rutgers (5-2)

The Scarlet Knights briefly looked like they could make it a game against OSU when they ended the first quarter with a TD-run to cut the deficit to 14-7, but by the end of the third quarter found themselves down 56-10. Rutgers did control the ball longer -- 31.5 minutes to OSU's 28.5 -- but the Scarlet Knights lost two fumbles and Gary Nova threw an interception. Desmon Peoples ran for both of Rutgers' touchdowns and Leonte Carroo caught five catches for 100 yards.

Rutgers plays at Nebraska on Saturday.

9. Northwestern (3-4)

After ending the first half up 17-14 on Nebraska at home, the Wildcats fell apart in the second half and were outscored 21-0. Justin Jackson was the lone bright spot on offense, running for two touchdowns across 128 yards. No other Northwestern rusher had more than eight yards, and no receiver had more than 33, though eight different players had at least 10. QB Trevor Siemian threw for 173 yards, no touchdowns and an interception, and lost 26 yards on the ground.

Northwestern has off this weekend.

10. Michigan (3-4)

The Wolverines had a bye in Week 8. They head to East Lansing this weekend to take on Michigan State, and are already 15-points underdogs.

11. Penn State (4-2)

The Nittany Lions had off this weekend. They host Ohio State on Saturday.

12. Purdue (3-5)

The Boilermakers looked like they were on their way to getting their second Big Ten win when they headed into halftime up 31-20, but they would manage just seven points in the second half. Minnesota completed its comeback with a 52-yard field goal with five minutes remaining, and Austin Appleby was picked off on the ensuing drive. It was one of two interceptions on the day by Appleby, who also threw three touchdowns and ran for another. Purdue narrowly edged the Gophers in total yardage, 451-450.

Purdue, the only Big Ten team to have played eight games already, finally has off this weekend.

13. Indiana (3-4)

The Hoosiers initially showed fight against Michigan State, and in the second quarter Shane Wynne ran for a 75-yard TD on a reverse that included breaking away from three Spartan defenders. Seven minutes later, Indiana would score again, taking a 17-14 lead with five minutes to play in the half. But it was the last points the Hoosiers would score all day.

Indiana was starting freshman Zander Diamont at quarterback, and he threw for just 11 yards on 5-for-15 passing. And besides Wynn's run and Tevin Coleman's 132 rushing yards, the Hoosiers had just 17 yards from the rest of the team.

Indiana has off this weekend.

14. Illinois (3-4)

The Fighting Illini had a bye in Week 8. They host Minnesota this weekend.