Big Ten football power rankings after Week 5: Big shake up




 

Week 5 gave little reason to move any of the teams in these weekly Big Ten power rankings out of their respective spots, but there was a good amount of reorganization just about everywhere else you look. The first Saturday in October offered an opportunity to take a hard look at everything that has happened this season and start to realize what is real and what was misguided.

Expecting Wisconsin and Michigan State to still be good was, as it turns out, not the wisest decision this season. The two programs have combined for six losses already and are trending in the wrong direction. But the mere thought of Illinois and Maryland playing a key role in how the division races shape up is becoming more a reality than ever before. And Minnesota taking its first loss of the season was another cause for some reworking in this week's power rankings.

Here is a look at this week's Big Ten power rankings following the events of Week 5.

 

Nebraska (2-3)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Lincoln, Nebraska, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers wide receiver Oliver Martin (89) and offensive lineman Broc Bando (73) celebrate after a touchdown against the Indiana Hoosiers during the first quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Indiana, 35-21

Last week: 14

Nebraska needed a win in a bad way, and they managed to find it against Indiana. The week off certainly may have helped, but let's see what Nebraska does next week. It will be a short week with a Friday night game on the longest road trip possible in the Big Ten.

The only reason Nebraska remains down here is because of a head-to-head loss to Northwestern, but that may not be the case for too much longer.

Next game: at Rutgers

Northwestern (1-4)

 

Oct 1, 2022; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Northwestern Wildcats linebacker Xander Mueller (34) recovers the fumble during the first quarter against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost at Penn State, 17-7

Last week: 13

Northwestern put up a respectable fight on the road against Penn State amid less-than-ideal weather conditions. But failing to score a single point off five Penn State turnovers is the kind of thing that happens to a struggling program like Northwestern.

Next game: vs. Wisconsin

Michigan State (2-3)

 

Oct 1, 2022; College Park, Maryland, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Mel Tucker looks down the field during the first half against the Maryland Terrapins at Capital One Field at Maryland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost at Maryland, 27-13

Last week: 8

After losing three consecutive games by double digits, Michigan State is in need of a reset button on the 2022 season. The Spartans are in a tough spot right now, because their losing streak doesn't have a great chance of being snapped next week.

Next game: vs. Ohio State

Wisconsin (2-3)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Madison, Wisconsin, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini running back Chase Brown (2) rushes with the football as Wisconsin Badgers safety John Torchio (15) defends during the third quarter at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost to Illinois, 34-10

Last week: 11

Wisconsin is fading and fading quickly. The Badgers have already lost two games at home, but getting run off their own field by their former head coach and Illinois was about as tough as they may come for the Badgers.

Next game: at Northwestern

Rutgers (3-2)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes safety Ronnie Hickman (14) tackles Rutgers Scarlet Knights quarterback Noah Vedral (0) for a loss during the first quarter at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost at Ohio State, 49-10

Last week: 7

Rutgers had a rough afternoon on the road against Ohio State, but that's hardly a reason to knock them too much. Rutgers has never fared well on the road in Columbus anyway. But they have an opportunity for a Big Ten win next week with a Friday night home game against Nebraska.

Next game: vs. Nebraska

Iowa (3-2)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Iowa City, Iowa, USA; Michigan Wolverines linebacker Mike Morris (90) sacks Iowa Hawkeyes quarterback Spencer Petras (7) during the third quarter at Kinnick Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost to Michigan, 27-14

Last week: 10

Eventually, this season, Iowa's offense is going to have to figure something out. Otherwise, they are doomed to more frustrating results. Iowa didn't put a point on the board until the fourth quarter against Michigan, and by then it was far too late.

Next game: at Illinois

Indiana (3-2)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Lincoln, Nebraska, USA; Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Connor Bazelak (9) passes against the Nebraska Cornhuskers during the first quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost at Nebraska 35-21

Last week: 6

Indiana has dropped two straight on the road, each by double digits. The Hoosiers will have to clean some things up because they have a big challenge coming to Bloomington next week.

Next game: vs. Michigan

Minnesota (4-1)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Golden Gophers head coach P.J. Fleck reacts during the second quarter against the Purdue Boilermakers at Huntington Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Lost to Purdue, 20-10

Last week: 4

The Gophers certainly take a step back this week after struggling without Mohamed Ibrahim against Purdue. Tanner Morgan couldn't pick up the slack with three interceptions thrown and suddenly Minnesota looked vulnerable.

Next game: at Illinois (Week 7)

Purdue (3-2)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Purdue Boilermakers running back Dylan Downing (38) runs for a touchdown against the Minnesota Golden Gophers during the first quarter at Huntington Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Minnesota, 20-10

Last week: 12

The Boilermakers were happy to have Aidan O'Connell back on the field, but they may have been happier to not have to deal with Minnesota's top running back, Mohamed Ibrahim. The defense took care of things in a good road upset of Minnesota.

Next game: at Maryland

Illinois (4-1)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Madison, Wisconsin, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini wide receiver Isaiah Williams (1) reacts following a play during the second quarter against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Wisconsin, 34-10

Last week: 9

It's fair to classify this as a statement game for Illinois, even though we have already established Wisconsin is a program in some disarray. Chase Brown continues to shine on the ground and Bret Bielema has Illinois firmly in the thick of a Big Ten West race that is wide open.

Next game: vs. Iowa

Maryland (4-1)

 

Oct 1, 2022; College Park, Maryland, USA; Maryland Terrapins quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa (3) throws from the pocket during the first half against the Michigan State Spartans at Capital One Field at Maryland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Michigan State, 27-13

Last week: 5

After playing Michigan tough last week, the Maryland Terrapins returned home and took care of business against Michigan State. Taula Tagovailoa continues to lead the way as one of the Big Ten's top passers, but the Terps defense really took control against the struggling Spartans in Week 5.

Next game: vs. Purdue

Penn State (5-0)

 

Oct 1, 2022; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions tight end Brenton Strange (86) celebrates with his teammates after scoring a touchdown during the first quarter against the Northwestern Wildcats at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Northwestern, 17-7

Last week: 3

Penn State did not have the kind of game you would like to have going into a bye week, but the defense showed up to bail out the offensive woes against Northwestern. The Wildcats scored zero points off five Penn State turnovers, giving defensive coordinator Manny Diaz something to smile about at least.

Next game: at Michigan (Week 7)

Michigan (5-0)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Iowa City, Iowa, USA; Michigan Wolverines running back Donovan Edwards (7) runs the ball as Iowa Hawkeyes linebacker Seth Benson (44) pursues during the second quarter at Kinnick Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Iowa, 27-14

Last week: 2

Michigan passed its first road test of the season and the defense put the clamps down on Iowa early. The offense gradually ground out some yards and points and put the game firmly under their control by the fourth quarter. Another road game comes next week.

Next game: at Indiana

Ohio State (5-0)

 

Oct 1, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) looks to throw during the first quarter against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: Beat Rutgers, 49-10

Last week: 1

Is there anyone in the Big Ten that will topple the Buckeyes? Since their close game against Notre Dame in Week 1, Ohio State has put each of their opponents in an early suplex en route to a comfortable victory.

Next game: at Michigan State

Story originally appeared on Nittany Lions Wire

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