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NCAA Football Big 10 Football

Big Ten Teams Fail to Come Up Big

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Big Ten Struggles In Non-Conference Weekend

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Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday, the Big Ten had several opportunities to prove that the conference should be considered among the best in college football. Ohio State took care of California, but other than that the Big Ten failed to make a statement and actually had some embarrassing moments.

Having weeks like this not only is a loss on the records of the individual teams, but further supports the perception that the Big Ten, as a conference, is weak. A further consequence could be that if Michigan, Michigan State or Ohio State runs the table, an undefeated Big Ten champion could get left out of the BCS National Title Game.

There were four losses and a close call. One of them came on the road, another on a neutral field (but in the same state, so it was effectively a home game), but the other three all came at home, which makes things worse.

On the bright side, two of the losses came to ranked teams and none of them were FCS teams. Three of the winning teams were from the Pac-12, but the other two were from non-automatic-qualifying conferences. There are still opportunities coming up in the season for the Big Ten to redeem itself. Michigan State travels to Notre Dame on Saturday, and bowl season will be full of opportunities for the Big Ten.

Until the Big Ten starts beating teams from other conferences on a consistent basis, the perception about the conference won’t change. Yesterday was no help.

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Akron at Michigan

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Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan had a home game against the Akron Zips of the MAC Conference and narrowly escaped 28-24

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Illinois vs. Washington at Soldier Field, Chicago, IL

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Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois lost to the University of Washington of the Pac-12, 34-24

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UCF at Penn State

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Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Penn State lost at home to the University of Central Florida Knights of the American Athletic Conference, 34-31

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UCLA at Nebraska

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Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Nebraska collapses in the second half at home and falls to the UCLA Bruins of the Pac-12, 41-21

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Wisconsin at Arizona State

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Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin blew the chance to beat the Sun Devils at Arizona State of the Pac-12, as the final score was 32-30.