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Around the Big Ten & Power Rankings: Week 9

Who's rising and falling in the Big Ten in Week 9?

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

1. Michigan State (7-1)

The Spartans took care of business at home, opening up a 28-3 lead on Michigan before winning 35-11. Connor Cook threw for 227 yards and a touchdown and Jeremy Langford rushed for 177 yards and three scores. Tony Lippett also added 103 yards on three catches, including a 70-yard TD. Michigan State dominated the Wolverines in total yardage, 446 to 186.

Michigan State has a bye this weekend.

2. Ohio State (6-1)

The Buckeyes overcame a scare in Beaver Stadium and a lackluster performance from J.T. Barrett to defeat Penn State in double overtime, 31-24. Barrett threw for just 74 yards on 12 completions (his lowest single-game total on the season by far) and threw two interceptions and just one touchdown. But he did run for two scores on the ground, both of which came in overtime, and the second was a 4-yard run that was the game-winner. Ezekiel Elliott ran for 109 yards and a score on 26 carries.

Ohio State hosts Illinois on Saturday.

3. Nebraska (7-1)

The Cornhuskers won at home over Rutgers, 42-24. Nebraska opened up a 21-7 halftime lead thanks to 53 and 48-yard touchdown runs by Ameer Abdullah that came three minutes apart, and the running back finished with three scores overall across 225 yards. Abdullah also added 90 yards on two kick returns. Tommy Armstrong Jr. threw for two touchdowns and an interception and the Huskers were 8-of-13 on third downs.

Nebraska hosts Purdue this weekend.

4. Wisconsin (5-2)

The Badgers made a statement with their 52-7 drubbing of Maryland. Wisconsin will now head to New Jersey to take on Rutgers.

5. Minnesota (6-2)

The Gophers came back down to earth with an unexpected 28-24 road loss to Illinois, just their second on the season. Minnesota entered halftime down 14-3 but would battle back to take a 24-21 lead entering the fourth quarter. Ryan Santoso missed a 40-yard field goal that would have extended the lead and Illinois' V'Angelo Bentley returned a fumble for a touchdown mid-way through the quarter that provided the final margin. Mitch Leidner threw for 240 yards, an interception and a TD and David Cobb ran for two scores.

Minnesota has a very tough schedule in its final four games. This weekend though, the Gophers are off.

6. Maryland (5-3)

I'm sure some will find this high, but my reasoning is the Terps recently beat Iowa (who had off), Northwestern only has three wins, Penn State has lost three in a row and Rutgers two in a row. The middle of the conference is muddy.

7. Iowa (5-2)

The Hawkeyes had off last weekend. They'll host Northwestern on Saturday with a chance to grab bowl eligibility.

8. Northwestern (3-4)

The Wildcats also had off in Week 9. They'll look to break a two-game losing streak when they play at Iowa this weekend.

9. Rutgers (5-3)

The Scarlet Knights dropped their second game in a row after starting the season 5-1. The 42-24 loss to Nebraska came on the road, and Rutgers also lost quarterback Gary Nova in the closing minute of the second quarter after he injured his knee. His status for the Knights next game is uncertain, though head coach Kyle Flood said Sunday that he received a positive report on Nova. Redshirt freshman Chris Laviano replaced Nova against Nebraska, completing 4-of-7 passes for 49 yards and winding up as the team's leading rusher with 54 yards on five carries.

Rutgers hosts Wisconsin in Week 10.

10. Penn State (4-3)

The Nittany Lions took No. 13 Ohio State to the brink with double overtime, but couldn't pull off the upset at home, losing 31-24. Christian Hackenberg threw for 224 yards and a touchdown but also threw two interceptions, was sacked five times and lost 27 yards on the ground. Slow starts have been a repeated problem for this Penn State team, and it was no different Saturday as they were held scoreless for the entire first half. Defensively, PSU held J.T. Barrett to just 74 yards and picked him off twice.

Penn State hosts the Terps on Saturday.

11. Illinois (4-4)

The Illini got a big win at home over Minnesota, 28-24. After their 14-3 halftime lead evaporated, V'Angelo Bentley ran back a fumble 12 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter to steal the win. With Wes Lunt still out with a broken leg, Reilly O'Toole passed for just 118 yards but threw for a TD and ran for another. Illinois had only 263 total yards compared to the Gophers' 411, but had just one turnover and got timely stops by the defense.

Illinois plays Ohio State in Columbus this weekend.

12. Purdue (3-5)

Purdue had a bye last weekend. They play on the road at Nebraska this weekend.

13. Michigan (3-5)

The Wolverines had to play No. 8 Michigan State in East Lansing and didn't score a touchdown until less than four minutes left in the game before falling 35-11. Devin Gardner continued to struggle, completing 15-of-30 passes for 125 yards, throwing two interceptions and no TDs and losing 18 yards on the ground. Michigan had just 61 rushing yards total and the Wolverines had three turnovers overall.

Michigan hosts Indiana this weekend.

14. Indiana (3-4)

The Hoosiers had a bye in Week 9. They'll travel to play Michigan on Saturday looking to get back in the win column.