Big Ten football power rankings after week 0

College football is officially underway following the completion of Week 0 action. That included three Big Ten teams starting early in the new season, with Northwestern taking the lead in Big Ten West following a victory in Ireland against Nebraska. Could this be a bad omen of things to come for the Huskers, and should the Wildcats have a turnaround season of their own?

Throughout the 2022 season, the Nittany Lions Wire will join other sites in the College Wires network to share a weekly look at the Big Ten power rankings. Unfortunately, a preseason power ranking couldn’t be completed in time before the official start of the season, so consider it your best for an early look at the Big Ten’s perspective. With a couple of minor tweaks to what could have been a preseason standings, this is as close to a prediction as I could come up with for the Big Ten this fall.

I will point out that these rankings could look drastically different after Week 1, as I tend to form these types of rankings based largely on the results of games played rather than general expectations for a season. But we’ll get to that within a week after the first full weekend of college football is in the books.

So, without further delay, here is my first crack at the power rankings for the Big Ten in 2022 after the Week 0 games.

rutgers

Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

I don’t really have high expectations for the Scarlet Knights this season, though I suspect Rutgers won’t finish the season bottom by a wide margin this season. But there is nowhere to go but up at the beginning of the season.

Next game: at boston university

Indiana

Syndication: Journal-Courier

Indiana came back to earth in a big way last season, and the way things are looking doesn’t suggest it will get much better in 2022.

Next game: vs. Illinois

Nebraska (0-1)

Brendan Moran-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: lost to northwest 31-28

Before the season started, I suggested that Nebraska need to get six wins before they get to November if they want to get to a bowl game this year. After losing the first game against Northwestern, that mission just got a little more difficult.

See also  On abuse in women's football

Next week: against North Dakota

Illinois (1-0)

Ron Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: defeated Wyoming 38-6

Illinois certainly got the kind of start to the season it wanted with a win over Wyoming. Illinois should clean up some more in non-conference play and should show some improvement once Big Ten play begins. Getting Indiana next week should keep that going.

Next week: in Indiana

Maryland

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland is a bit of a wild card team for me this season. The Terrapins have the potential to pull off an upset almost anywhere on the schedule this season, but they also lack the depth to make a serious run in the Big Ten East Division.

Next game: against buffalo

Northwest (1-0)

Brendan Moran-USA TODAY Sports

Last game: beat Nebraska 31-28

Northwestern has an uncanny ability to follow up a lousy season with a good year. Could the Irish debut start the recovery season Pat Fitzgerald hopes to have?

Next game: vs. Duke (Week 2)

Purdue

Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Purdue is coming off a nine-win season and will play at home Thursday night against Penn State to open the season. A win for the Boilermakers will allow them to make a nice jump up the power rankings, but this may not be the same team we saw a year ago.

Next game: vs. Penn State

Minnesota

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

While I may go with another team or two to top the Big Ten West, Minnesota is very much set to play a factor in how the division plays out. Minnesota should be a fun team to watch this fall.

Next game: against the state of New Mexico

Iowa

Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

You know what you’re going to get with Iowa. Good defense, solid running game, great tight end game. It’s a formula that works for Kirk Ferentz most of the time, and it should lead to another good year in Iowa City.

See also  Kent, Perez fight over two different Americas in WA Congress race

Next game: against the state of South Dakota

Wisconsin

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

From top to bottom, it’s hard to find a more comprehensive year-over-year program in Big Ten West than Wisconsin. Expect more of that kind of stability in Madison this season. Wisconsin is my pick for Big Ten West.

Next game: against the state of illinois

state of michigan

Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan State was a nice surprise last season, but I think they take a little step back this season. But he’s still good enough to be considered in the top half of the Big Ten in 2022, hands down.

Next game: against western michigan

State of Pennsylvania

Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Is Penn State a sleeper pick, as Kirk Herbstreit suggests? We’ll get an early indication of what to do with Penn State this season with road games at Purdue in Week 1 and Auburn in Week 3. After those games, we’ll have a more serious conversation about where Penn State is going this season. .

Next game: at Purdue

Michigan

Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is letting a quarterback decision hang over the team in the first two games of the season, and the Wolverines are losing some big players on defense, but this could be another season. double-digit winning streak for Michigan thanks to a very favorable schedule overall. The regular season finale is not included, of course.

Next game: against the state of Colorado

Ohio State

Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

You heard it here first, Ohio State is going to be good this year. I know, surprise, right? I think the Buckeyes are loaded and ready to return to the top of the Big Ten, and I think they make a bit of a statement in their home opener against Notre Dame this weekend.

Next game: against Notre Dame

The story originally appeared on Nittany Lions Wire

Leave a Comment