The Big Ten in the BCS after Week 11
The Big 10 in the BCS standings in Week 11 was reminiscent of the Jefferson’s. All three teams listed in last week’s standings are moving on up, two of them without playing a game. There is another team that could be considered just on the fringe as well.
The Ohio State Buckeyes were idle this week but were the biggest benefactor of No. 6 Oregon losing to No. 4 Stanford last Thursday night, moving up from last week’s No. 4 to now sitting at No. 3. This week, the Buckeyes travel to Champaign, IL to take on an Illinois Fighting Illini team that hasn’t won a conference game since 2010. Ohio State will need another convincing win to stay in their spot.
Ohio State’s hopes to move up into the BCS top two lie with Syracuse and Mississippi State. The Orange travel to No. 2 Florida State and the Bulldogs host No. 1 Alabama. The Seminoles and Crimson Tide will be heavily favored in their respective games, so Buckeye fans shouldn’t expect any movement this week.
The next Big 10 school to appear, at No. 16, is Michigan State. The Spartans moved up one spot despite not playing a game. This week’s game for Michigan State is a road trip to Lincoln, NE to take on the Nebraska Cornhuskers. There aren’t any matchups of teams ranked of the Spartans this week, so barring some upsets in the top 15, Michigan State fans shouldn’t expect much upward movement this week. A loss at Nebraska, however, could drop the Spartans out of the standings altogether.
The final Big 10 school to appear in this week’s standings is the Wisconsin Badgers. By virtue of their home win over BYU, the Badgers moved up two spots from No. 24 to No. 22. This week, Wisconsin hosts the Indiana Hoosiers and a win will likely keep them in the standings. Like Michigan State, the Badgers will probably need some upsets in the top 21 to really jump up in the standings.
If Nebraska is able to beat Michigan State and take control of the Big 10 Legends division, it will have made a very strong case to be in the BCS Top 25. The Cornhuskers could also benefit from games between No. 7 Auburn and No. 25 Georgia and No.12 Oklahoma State and No. 24 Texas being played on Saturday, as one team will lose both of those games.
Week 11 brought minimal upward movement for the Big 10 in the BCS standings. All three teams currently in the standings need to win in Week 12 and hope for some upsets in order to improve their position.