Big Ten football rankings entering Week 13 of the 2016 season. Ohio State and Michigan keep their College Football Playoff hopes alive ahead of next week’s showdown.
Michigan State has ruined Ohio State’s national championship chances twice since Urban Meyer took over in Columbus. The Buckeyes weren’t going to let it happen a third time.
Ohio State made a critical stop on a two-point conversion attempt in the fourth quarter and held on to beat the Spartans, 17-16, keeping it in line for a berth in the College Football Playoff. It’ll have to win next week, though, against Michigan, which also currently sits in the CFP’s top four rankings.
The Wolverines fought off a tough Indiana team and won at the Big House. A victory in Columbus would send them to the Big Ten title game, where they would be able to essentially lock up a berth in the Playoff.
With another weekend in the books, here’s a look at how the Big Ten stacks up heading into Week 13 of the season.
Week 13 Big Ten Football Rankings
14. Rutgers (Last Week – 14)
Coach Chris Ash can’t wait to get some of his own players into the program to fully begin the rebuilding process for the Scarlet Knights.
13. Purdue (12)
The Boilermakers have lost six straight after losing to Wisconsin. They’ll try to salvage a win for interim coach Gerad Parker next week against Indiana.
12. Michigan State (13)
The Spartans played their best game of the season and nearly knocked Ohio State out of the playoff picture. In the end, it just winds up being their eighth loss of a disappointing season.
11. Illinois (11)
Illinois’ loss to Iowa marked the third time in its last five games that its been held to fewer than 10 points.
10. Maryland (10)
Offensive coordinator Walt Bell called plays from the sidelines for the first time all season this week against Nebraska. It didn’t help. The Terps have scored 13 points over the last three weeks combined.
9. Northwestern (9)
Northwestern’s 29-12 loss to Minnesota forces it to beat Illinois next week in order to finish 6-6 and be eligible for a bowl game.
8. Indiana (8)
Valiant effort by the Hoosiers in the Big House before it fell short. They still have a chance to become bowl-eligible with a win over Purdue next week.
7. Iowa (7)
Iowa has a shot at an eight-win season if it can beat Nebraska at home next week after dispatching Illinois, 28-0.
6. Minnesota (6)
Minnesota’s win puts it on the verge of earning nine victories for the first time since a 10-win campaign in 2003. The Golden Gophers have a shot at ruining Wisconsin’s Big Ten title hopes next week.
5. Nebraska (5)
Nebraska didn’t have much trouble with Maryland, winning 28-7. A win at Iowa and a Wisconsin loss to Minnesota next week would send the Huskers to the Big Ten championship game.
4. Penn State (4)
The Nittany Lions need Ohio State to beat Michigan next week in order to get to Indianapolis for the Big Ten title game and a shot at a major bowl game. Depending on what kind of help they get, a College Football Playoff berth is not out of the question.
3. Wisconsin (3)
Alex Hornibrook and Bart Houston were efficient, and Corey Clement had another 100-yard effort in a 49-20 win over Purdue. A victory next week against Minnesota, and the Badgers are heading to Indianapolis for the Big Ten title game.
2. Ohio State (2)
It certainly wasn’t pretty, but the Buckeyes survived their trip to East Lansing. It’s safe to say they’ll need a better effort next week when Michigan heads to Columbus seeking a berth in the conference title game.
1. Michigan (1)
The Wolverines bounced back from their loss to Iowa by shaking off the pesky Hoosiers. As was predicted before the season even started, their chances of reaching the Playoff hinge on winning at Ohio State.