Big Ten Power Rankings: Penn State rests while Ohio State cruises

Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) looks to pass against the Michigan State Spartans during second half action at Spartan Stadium Saturday, October 8, 2022.Msuosu 100822 Kd 0014431
Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) looks to pass against the Michigan State Spartans during second half action at Spartan Stadium Saturday, October 8, 2022.Msuosu 100822 Kd 0014431 /
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Oct 7, 2022; Piscataway, New Jersey, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers tight end Travis Vokolek (83) celebrates his touchdown reception during the second half against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights at SHI Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 7, 2022; Piscataway, New Jersey, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers tight end Travis Vokolek (83) celebrates his touchdown reception during the second half against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights at SHI Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports /

14-10.

14. Northwestern (1-5, 1-2) Last week: 14

After competing hard against Penn State in Week Five, Northwestern took a huge step back against Wisconsin, losing 42-7. The Wildcats were torched by Graham Mertz, who went 20-29 for 299 yards and five touchdowns. Overall, Northwestern allowed 515 total yards of offense to a Wisconsin group that was struggling to score. On offense, Northwestern used three different quarterbacks in an attempt to get something going. Three turnovers didn’t help the Wildcats achieve that goal. Keep an eye out to see if Brendan Sullivan starts at quarterback going forward.

13. Michigan State (2-4, 0-3) Last week: 12

Michigan State’s pass defense is uh… not good. Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud went 21-26 for 361 yards and six touchdowns as the Buckeyes rocked the Spartans 49-20. The offense wasn’t good for Michigan State either as seven points came via a rare Stroud pick-six and another touchdown was in garbage time. After winning 11 games last year, Michigan State doesn’t have any identity on offense and has done nothing to fix the secondary issues that plagued the team last year.

12. Indiana (3-3, 1-2) Last week: 11

The Hoosiers deserve credit for hanging in there against Michigan for three quarters, but the game is four quarters long. Michigan eventually pulled away to win 31-10. While the Indiana offense didn’t really impress, the defense kept Michigan in check through three quarters, only allowing 17 points. The offense’s struggles eventually became too much of a burden and the defense started to weaken in the fourth. The offensive line allowed seven sacks, which kept the Hoosiers from mounting any kind of comeback. The effort was nice to see, but this offense lacks a lot of talent.

11. Rutgers (3-3, 0-3) Last week: 9

Rutgers run may have come to an end. After starting the season 3-0, the Knights have lost all three of their Big Ten games. They held a 13-0 lead over Nebraska at halftime but were outscored 14-0 in the second half to lose 14-13 on Friday. The effort was so bad that offensive coordinator Sean Gleeson was let go on Sunday. While Gleeson may have been an issue, Rutgers was also penalized nine times and had three turnovers. Won’t win many games when that happens.

10. Nebraska (3-3, 2-1) Last week: 12

Nebraska has now won two straight Big Ten games with the 14-13 win over Rutgers. After throwing two interceptions in the first half, quarterback Casey Thompson redeemed himself by tossing two touchdowns in the second half and completing the comeback. While Rutgers isn’t good, this was a big win for the Huskers. This was a game they lose ten out of ten times with Scott Frost. The improvements have been apparent but there’s still some ways to go for Nebraska to get back to a true force in the Big Ten. However, they’re still alive in the West division race.