Thanks to a bevy of top-10 losses this weekend, the Big Ten placed three teams in the top 10 when the latest AP poll was released Sunday afternoon.
Ohio State remained the No. 2 team in the country, while Iowa moved up two spots from No. 8 to No. 6 and Michigan State moved up five spots from No. 14 to No. 9, giving the conference three teams in the top 10. Three other Big Ten teams were ranked: Michigan moved up one spot from No. 15 to No. 14, Northwestern moved up from No. 24 to No. 20 and Wisconsin moved up from No. 23 to No. 21.
Top-10 teams Utah, LSU, Stanford and Baylor all lost this weekend, allowing the Hawkeyes, Spartans and Wolverines to move up in the rankings. Utah, LSU and Stanford all fell out of the top 10, while Baylor dropped from No. 4 to No. 10.
Ohio State remained undefeated and moved to 10-0 with a 28-3 win over Illinois on Saturday. The Buckeyes have the two toughest tests of their regular-season schedule in the final two weeks against Michigan State and Michigan. A win over Michigan State — and a Michigan win over Penn State — would force a play-in game for the East Division title and a spot in the conference championship game between the Buckeyes and Wolverines in the annual rivalry game.
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Iowa also boasts a 10-0 record, staying perfect with a 40-35 win over rival Minnesota on Saturday, winning the Floyd of Rosedale. The Hawkeyes have two games remaining against Purdue and Nebraska, games in which Iowa will be heavily favored. A win in just one would clinch a spot in the Big Ten title game.
Michigan State, 9-1 after Saturday's 24-7 win over Maryland, still has a path to the East Division title and the Big Ten title game. If the Spartans beat the Buckeyes, all they'd need would be a win in the season-finale against Penn State to win the East, with the outcome of the Ohio State-Michigan game becoming meaningless, as Michigan State would hold the tiebreakers over both.
Michigan can also still win the East Division crown. The Wolverines improved to 8-2 with Saturday's double-overtime win over Indiana. If Ohio State beats Michigan State, Michigan can win the East by beating the Buckeyes, assuming of course that the Wolverines get a win over Penn State.
Northwestern, at 8-2 after beating Purdue on Saturday, can clinch the program's fourth-ever 10-win season with wins in the final two regular-season games against Wisconsin and Illinois.
Wisconsin, which was on bye this week, is also 8-2 with losses to two top-six teams in Alabama and Iowa. The Badgers can get to 10 wins with victories in the final two regular-season games against Northwestern and Minnesota.