Published Sunday, November 10, 2013 at 10:38 pm / Updated at 11:07 pm
FOOTBALL
Barfknecht's Big Ten Rankings, Nov. 11

World-Herald staff writer Lee Barfknecht ranks the Big Ten conference football teams as published in The World-Herald on Nov. 11.

* * *

1. Ohio State (9-0, 5-0)

Last week: Idle. This week: at Illinois, 11 a.m. ESPN. If Indiana can score 52 points on the Illini, how many will the Buckeyes put up while keeping an eye on the scoreboard and the BCS standings? Hide the children.

2. Wisconsin (7-2, 4-1)

Last week: beat BYU 27-17. This week: Indiana, 11 a.m. ESPN2. Controlling the game against BYU is an excellent accomplishment. The Badgers have the nation's most underrated defense, and might be the most underrated overall.

3. Michigan State (8-1, 5-0)

Last week: Idle. This week: at Nebraska, 2:30 p.m. ABC. After Michigan State's romp past Michigan, I was surprised how quickly in postgame interviews the talk turned to Nebraska. The Spartans want payback for the past two years.

4. Minnesota (8-2, 4-2)

Last week: beat Penn State 24-10. This week: Idle. Running back David Cobb, who started the season third string, has strung together four straight 100-yard games, a first for the Gophers in eight years.

5. Nebraska (7-2, 4-1)

Last week: beat Michigan 17-13. This week: Michigan St., 2:30 p.m. ABC. If NU's offensive linemen decide to go out to dinner, they should label it the Last Man's Club. Despite the injuries, the group remains more than functional.

6. Iowa (6-4, 3-3)

Last week: beat Purdue 38-14. This week: Idle. After a 4-8 season last year, bowl eligibility is something to celebrate. But the Hawkeyes would have a lot more fun if they finish the regular season by knocking off Michigan and Nebraska.

7. Indiana (4-5, 2-3)

Last week: beat Illinois 52-35. This week: at Wisconsin, 11 a.m. ESPN2. Ever heard of Tevin Coleman? He's an Indiana running back, and he's good. He leads the nation in runs over 40 yards (eight) and has scored a touchdown in every game.

8. Penn State (5-4, 2-3)

Last week: lost to Minnesota 24-10. This week: Purdue, 11 a.m. BTN. Coach Bill O'Brien banned his team from speaking to the media after losing to Minnesota. There wasn't much to say. This 61-scholarship team looks worn out.

9. Michigan (6-3, 2-3)

Last week: lost to Nebraska 17-13. This week: at Northwestern, 2:30 p.m. BTN. The word “funk'' doesn't begin to describe what's going on in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines rightfully didn't get a single vote in either poll Sunday.

10. Northwestern (4-5, 0-5)

Last week: Idle. This week: Michigan, 2:30 p.m. BTN. Can the Wildcats find two wins out of Michigan, Michigan State and Illinois in order to get to a bowl? I say yes.

11. Illinois (3-6, 0-5)

Last week: lost to Indiana 52-35. This week: at Ohio State, 11 a.m. ESPN. The Big Ten losing skid is 19. The record is 38 by Northwestern. Setback No. 20 is coming against Ohio State. Then coach Tim Beckman had better get real busy.

12. Purdue (1-8, 0-5)

Last week: lost to Iowa 38-14. This week: at Penn State, 11 a.m. BTN. The Boilermakers' lone victory was 20-14 over FBS Indiana State on Sept. 7, and that required a last-minute interception to secure it. That might be it for the season.

Contact the writer: Lee Barfknecht

lee.barfknecht@owh.com    |   402-444-1024    |  

Lee Barfknecht has won nine national writing awards from four separate organizations, and is a 12-time winner of the Nebraska sportswriter of the year award. He covers Big Ten football and basketball, Nebraska basketball and other college financial issues for The World-Herald.

Read more related stories
PHOTO GALLERY AND VIDEO »

 

< >
SPOTLIGHT »
2013 college football preview
View our 2013 college football preview, a 26-page, three-part section filled with coverage of the Huskers, Big Ten conference and more.
Big Red Bowl Retrospective
See complete historical results, game recaps and photo coverage from the Nebraska Cornhuskers college football bowl game appearances, from the 1941 Rose Bowl up to today.
Big Ten football recruits
The World-Herald's Big Ten recruiting database contains every football recruit that signed with a Big Ten school from 2002 to 2011, complete with color-coded interactive map representations, player information, high-concentrations recruiting clusters and more.
Devaney Center timeline
Check out a World-Herald timeline to see the evolution of memorable moments at the Devaney Center, complete with photos, videos, memorable quotes and more.
Follow OWHbigred on Twitter
Looking for the latest Husker sports news from The Omaha World-Herald and Omaha.com? Follow us on Twitter!
Husker scholarship distribution chart
Want to see how many scholarships NU has invested at each position? Wondering how the Huskers have appropriated their offers by class? Check out our handy chart to look further into how Bo Pelini has built his team.
Husker Signing Day 2013
The World-Herald's top-notch coverage of the Nebraska football's class of 2013, complete with videos, photos, articles, live recruit interviews, interactive components and more.
Husker turnovers: A slippery slope
Bo Pelini has coached 68 games at Nebraska. When NUís turnover margin is positive or even, the Huskers are 35-2. When they lose the turnover battle, theyíre 13-18. Why hasnít Nebraska joined the nationís elite? More than anything, itís turnovers.
Interactive: Bo Pelini's contract
View an interactive PDF of Pelini's revised contract signed by the NU football coach, complete with brief summaries of the legalese and insight into the document's finer points.
Interactive: Darin Erstad's contract (2012)
View an interactive PDF of NU baseball coach Darin Erstad's contract released in August 2012, complete with brief summaries of the legalese and insight into the document's finer points.
Interactive: Tim Miles' contract
View an interactive PDF of Tim Miles' contract signed by the Nebraska men's basketball coach on May 4, 2012, complete with brief legal explanations, comparisons to other Big Ten coaches and more.
Omaha.com's Big Ten coverage
Delivering the best news coverage and analysis of the Big Ten Conference, from Omaha.com and other top news outlets from around country.
Husker Recruiting: Changes shrink NU's sphere of influence
For decades, the Great Plains represented fertile recruiting ground for Tom Osborne's football program. Restoring that lost tradition won't be easy.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
BRT ON TWITTER »
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT »
< >