clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Around the Big Ten & Power Rankings: Week 4

Who's rising and who's falling in the Big Ten?

Eric Francis

1. Michigan State (2-1)

The Spartans lit up Eastern Michigan 73-14 coming out of the bye week. It pushed their average point total to 48.3, good for sixth in the FBS.  Despite the high scoring, the three quarterbacks that took snaps for Michigan State against EMU combined for just 19 pass attempts. Delton Williams ran for 103 yards and three scores and Tony Lippett caught two TD passes.

MSU will host Wyoming in its final non-conference game this Saturday.

2. Wisconsin (2-1)

The Badgers took care of a Bowling Green team that beat Indiana a week prior with a 68-17 victory. And while Tanner McEvoy works on his passing game, Wisconsin's 359.7 average rushing yards is No. 1 in the FBS. Melvin Gordon had an absolutely monster game against Bowling Green, rushing for five touchdowns and 253 yards. McEvoy also picked up 158 on the ground and ran for a score. Gordon was named the Co-Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week after his performance.

Also, check out Wisconsin's O-Line appearing in a new "This is SportsCenter" commercial.

The Badgers will host a familiar face in South Florida on Saturday.

3. Nebraska (4-0)

The Cornhuskers remain undefeated after a 41-31 home win over Miami. Nebraska is Top 10 in two different categories -- rushing yards (7th) and points for (10th). Ameer Abdullah continued to shine, rushing for 229 yards and two touchdowns and catching another TD. He was named Co-Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week. Tommy Armstrong Jr. only attempted 13 passes against the Hurricanes, but two went for scores.

The Huskers open Big Ten play by hosting Illiniois this weekend.

4. Ohio State (2-1)

The Buckeyes had off in Week 4, but got some recognition from USA Today, who ranked Ohio Stadium as the No. 3 stadium in college football.

OSU will host Cincinnati this weekend.

5. Penn State (4-0)

The Nittany Lions continued to roll, taking down UMass 48-7. Christian Hackenberg had one of his weaker games stats-wise, completing 12-of-23 passes for 178 yards. He did not throw a touchdown pass for the second straight game, however backup QB D.J. Crook did. Bill Belton rushed for two scores and 78 yards and was named BSD's MVP of the game.

Penn State is allowing just 11 points a game, which is 6th in the FBS.

The Nittany Lions host Northwestern on Saturday. With Michigan on the horizon after that, this is a team that could open 6-0.

6. Maryland (3-1)

7. Iowa (3-1)

The Hawkeyes picked up their best win of the season by coming from behind to beat Pittsburgh on the road, 24-20. Perhaps equally as important was that Iowa seemed to find a quarterback in C.J. Beathard, who completed 7-of-8 passes for 98 yards after coming in to replace an ineffective Jake Rudock. Beathard led a 94-yard drive to cut the deficit to three in the third quarter, then a 52-yard drive that proved to be the game-winner in the fourth.

Iowa travels to Purdue on Saturday.

8. Rutgers (3-1)

The Scarlet Knights rebounded from the loss to Penn State with a 31-24 win over Navy. After throwing five interceptions last week, Gary Nova had a relatively quiet day against the Midshipmen, throwing for 151 yards, no TDs and no interceptions. Justin Goodwin and Paul James both ran for touchdowns, but James left the game early with an injury. And Rutgers got bad news yesterday -- James, who is the team's leading rusher, is out for the season with a torn ACL.

Rutgers hosts Tulane in Week 5.

9. Indiana (2-1)

A week after falling to Bowling Green, the Hoosiers went down to Columbia and left with the upset, a 31-27 victory over No. 18 Missouri. Tevin Coleman ran for 132 yards and a touchdown on the ground and added another 57 yards in receptions. The Hoosiers racked up 252 yards of rushing overall, helping their average rushing yards rank No. 10 in the FBS. QB Nate Sudfeld passed for another 252 yards and a TD.

The Hoosiers will host Maryland Saturday as the Terps make their Big Ten conference debut.

10. Minnesota (3-1)

The Golden Gophers got back in the win column with a 24-7 win over San Jose State.  David Cobb ran for 207 yards and two touchdowns and backup quarterback Chris Streveler made his first career start, filling in for an injured Mitch Leidner. Streveler attempted just seven passes -- completing one (in the fourth quarter) and throwing another for an interception -- but ran for 161 yards and a touchdown.

The Gophers will head to the Big House Saturday for a B1G match-up against Michigan.

11. Michigan (2-2)

The struggles continued for the Wolverines, who fell to Utah 26-10. Michigan committed four turnovers, including two interceptions by QB Devin Gardner. Gardner was replaced by Shane Morris in the fourth quarter, but Morris threw an interception as well and completed just four of 13 pass attempts. The Wolverines continue to be hurt by poor quarterback play, putting the QB controversy in Ann Arbor in full swing. Brady Hoke is set to name a starter today.

Michigan will host Minnesota in Week 5.

12. Illinois (3-1)

The Fighting Illini came from behind to defeat Texas State, 42-35. Wes Lunt completed 25-of-39 passes for 266 yards, two touchdowns and an interception and Josh Ferguson rushed for 190 yards and two scores, including a 75-yard run. After heading into halftime down 21-13, the Illini outscored Texas State 29-14 in the second half. The game also included a nearly two-hour lightning delay.

Illinois begins B1G play at Nebraska this weekend.

13. Purdue (2-2)

The Boilermakers matched their win total from last season with a 35-13 win over FCS school Southern Illinois, which included a 28-3 lead at halftime. Quarterback Danny Etling threw for 198 yards and two scores and rushed for a third. Danny Anthrop added 106 yards on five catches with a touchdown, and on defense Landon Feichter grabbed an interception.

Purdue opens conference play by hosting Iowa on Saturday.

14. Northwestern (1-2)

The Wildcats picked up their first win of the season with a 24-7 win over Western Illinois, however it wasn't pretty. Northwestern was outgained 376-283, QB Trevor Siemian threw for just 117 yards and no touchdowns, and no player had more than 21 receiving yards. Two scoring runs by Solomon Vault and 92 rushing yards by Justin Jackson helped the Wildcats get into the win column.

Northwestern will head to State College to take on Penn State on Saturday.