As conference games get going this week, let’s take a look at the Big Ten Power Rankings as we head into Week #3.
1. Ohio State (2-0)
Last Week: 42-0 WIN vs Cincinnati
This Week: at Indiana (Noon, FOX)
Ohio State: Really really really good at football. Listen, I wasn’t sold after the FAU game but in an absolute shutout of Cincinnati, they displayed to everyone that the Buckeyes are certainly back in 2019 with the full intent of competing in the College Football Playoff. With their first Big Ten matchup against Indiana this week in the Buckeyes’ first true road game, the team in Columbus is on pace to have another dominant year in the Big Ten.
2. Wisconsin (2-0)
Last Week: 61-0 WIN vs Central Michigan
This Week: BYE
Dare I say the Badgers are the best team in the Big Ten West? They have shut out both of their opening two opponents and have looked absolutely phenomenal. Jonathan Taylor is a beast and he is going to continue his dominance behind the Big Ten’s best offensive line. With a bye week this week, the Badgers can only get better.
3. Michigan (2-0)
Last Week: 24-21 WIN vs Army (2OT)
This Week: BYE
Michigan is our Big Ten ‘yikes team of the week.’ Michigan was picked by many to win the Big Ten after the departure of Urban Meyer. However, the Harbaugh factor still hasn’t kicked in yet. Against Army, Michigan struggled to get its highly praised offense going behind Shea Patterson and if they don’t pick it up soon, the Wolverines will find themselves being the Buckeyes’ younger brother again.
4. Iowa (2-0)
Last Week: 30-0 WIN vs Rutgers
This Week: at Iowa State (4 p.m., FS1)
Iowa is like a box of chocolates, you never know what Kirk Ferentz is going to cook up. Sometimes it’s a top-15 ranking and other years it’s barely cracking a top-25 ranking. This year is still up in the air. I believe Iowa has a lot to prove this week against Iowa State and if they can show out, expect the 3-0 Hawkeyes to crack the top 25.
5. Penn State (2-0)
Last Week: 45-13 WIN vs Buffalo
This Week: vs Pittsburgh (Noon, ABC)
They beat Buffalo. A team they should beat year in and year out. There really isn’t anything else to say here. We should learn more when the Nittany Lions face off against Pitt this week.
6. Michigan State (2-0)
Last Week: 51-17 WIN vs Western Michigan
This Week: vs Arizona State (4 p.m., FOX)
A big win against Western Michigan is always good but the first real test for the Spartans comes this week against Arizona State. If MSU can destroy the Sun Devils, as many are predicting, they can move up in the ratings.
7. Maryland (2-0)
Last Week: 63-20 WIN vs Syracuse
This Week: at Temple (Noon, CBSSN)
Maryland football has to be the biggest surprise of the college football season so far. The Terrapins were supposed to be in a rebuilding year with the hiring of head coach Mike Locksley. However, the Terrapins are averaging 71-points per game and not looking to slow down anytime soon. This week is Temple, a team I put in the same quality as Syracuse, so it should be another blowout for the Terrapins this weekend.
8. Nebraska (1-1)
Last Week: 34-31 LOSS vs Colorado (OT)
This Week: vs Northern Illinois (8 p.m., FS1)
I just really wasn’t impressed with Nebraska at Colorado this past week. The Huskers gave up a huge lead to give the Buffaloes the upset with a 70% Nebraska crowd in Boulder. If the hype train is going to continue to roll for the new Scott Frost era, the Huskers need to be able to close out games. This past week they failed to do so.
9. Northwestern (0-1)
Last Week: BYE
This Week: vs UNLV (3:30 p.m., BTN)
The Wildcats were one of the only Big ten teams to play on the road in week one and play a legit opponent. Despite being 0-1, the bye week definitely gave the Wildcats some much needed rest to come back in week three in compete against a 1-1 UNLV squad.
10. Purdue (1-1)
Last Week: 42-24 WIN vs Vanderbilt
This Week: vs TCU (7:30 p.m., BTN)
A loss in week one wasn’t the hot start Purdue wanted to start 2019 but a bounce-back win against Vanderbilt was exactly what the Boilers needed. This week comes another big challenge for Purdue as they welcome TCU to town. A Big-12 offense could be the biggest test the Boilers have had as of yet.
11. Indiana (2-0)
Last Week: 52-0 WIN vs Eastern Illinois
This Week: vs Ohio State (Noon, FOX)
Indiana came off a pretty ugly game against Ball State and provided the Hoosier faithful with some much needed hope as the Hoosiers beat up against Eastern Illinois. The only problem: Eastern Illinois is an FCS opponent. With Ohio State coming to town this week, Indiana will get its first real test to see how it can compete against one of the top teams in the nation.
12. Minnesota (1-1)
Last Week: 31-23 WIN vs Fresno State
This Week: vs Georgia Southern (3:30 p.m., BTN)
Minnesota was looking to have an off year and that hasn’t been shown as of yet. So far the Gophers have played to the level of their competition and have snuck away both times. Winning on the road at Fresno State is no easy task but the Gophers got the job done. This week they welcome Georgia Southern to Minneapolis in what should be an absolute blowout game.
13. Illinois (2-0)
Last Week: 31-23 WIN at UConn
This Week: vs Eastern Michigan (Noon, BTN)
Illinois impressed many in its week one performance against Akron but scared many against UConn. Illinois is still rebuilding and while quarterback Brandon Peters is a nice addition, Lovie Smith’s squad is going to need a lot more to get the job done in Champaign.
14. Rutgers (1-1)
Last Week: 30-0 LOSS at Iowa
This Week: BYE
Just an overall rough week for the Scarlet Knights. After a huge win against UMass, the Knights were zipped by Iowa. Get ready, it is going to be another long year for Rutgers.