All right, welcome to our first Big Ten Power Rankings of the season that actually include information from real life football games. Now, for those of you who are unfamiliar with how I do my power rankings around here, unlike most power rankings, mine are based purely on statistics.
The only opinion involved in my rankings are choosing the stats that I think are an indicator to how good a football team actually is. Mix that with their actual win-loss records and VOILA, you have The Champaign Room's Big Ten Football Power Rankings Of Power And Honor And Tradition And Chastity.
Seriously, though, this is all math. Nerdy, nerdy math. And because it's nerdy math and we've got such a small sample size to work with -- not to mention so many cupcake opponents this early -- things will be a bit skewed early. But, honestly, they're still pretty accurate already based on what I saw.
So let's just get to it.
TEAM (LAST WEEK) - POINTS
1. Michigan (3) - 112 -- Shouldn't take too much from Michigan's dismantling of Central Michigan, but statistically, on both sides of the ball, they were your most impressive Big Ten team this week. Though we will get a better idea of how good this team really is this week. Next Game: vs Notre Dame
2. Wisconsin (4) - 108 -- Wisconsin played a very bad UMass team and they played like they were playing a very bad UMass team. We learned nothing about the Badgers in reality, and we'll learn nothing about them this week. Next Game: vs. Tennessee Tech
3. Ohio State (1) - 98 -- The score was probably closer than most of us thought, but one of Buffalo's touchdowns came on a pick six and the game was over before the end of the first quarter for all intents and purposes. Next Game: vs. San Diego State
4. Minnesota (10) - 96 -- This is probably the first time you're saying "really?" Well, yeah, really. The Gophers got off to a slow start against UNLV on Thursday night but once they got rolling they did just that the rest of the way. Still, I imagine it will be hard for the Gophers to stay this high for very long. Next Game: at New Mexico State
5. Indiana (9) - 92 -- The formula was very impressed with Indiana's offense, and in truth the Hoosiers defense wasn't as bad as allowing 35 points to Indiana State would lead you to believe. All that said, there's still a lot left to prove here, and a team that struggles stopping the run is facing a team that only runs this weekend. Next Game: vs. Navy
6. Northwestern (5) - 83 -- Considering all the real injuries the Wildcats have right now you'd think they wouldn't want to tempt fate by faking a bunch of them as well. Northwestern won on Saturday night in a fun game to watch, and did so without Kain Colter and Venric Mark, and that may explain why it was far from a perfect performance. Next Game: vs. Syracuse
7. Nebraska (2) - 82 -- I tweeted this stat yesterday from my personal account, but it's so damn startling that I need to mention it again. In its last three games (Wisconsin, Georgia and Wyoming) the Cornhuskers defense has allowed 1,831 yards and 149 points. That's an average of 610.3 yards and 49.7 points per game. HOLY SHIT FIX YO DEFENSE, BO. Next Game: vs. Southern Miss
8. Michigan State (6) - 79 -- Michigan State's win over Western Michigan on Friday night was every bit as ugly as you've come to expect from Michigan State. The defense was wonderful and the offense makes you want to kill yourself and everybody near you. Next Game: vs. South Florida
9. Illinois (12) -- 78 -- I don't really need to tell you why the Illini would be ranked this low. You saw the game. Next Game: vs. Cincinnati
10. Penn State (7) -- 72 -- Penn State got out of there with a win but it looked like a team without a lot of depth and a true freshman starting his first game at quarterback. So there's reasons to worry and there's reason to believe things will improve. It'll be interesting to see which way it goes. Next Game: vs. Eastern Michigan
11. Iowa (8) -- 61 -- And we finally reach a team that lost this weekend. You know, I came into this season convinced that Iowa wasn't going to be the same team we saw last season. And I honestly still feel that way. Northern Illinois isn't a horrible loss, though it's a bad loss. But I did see improvement on offense, the concern is some of the decision making of the coaching staff. And it's a legit concern. Next Game: vs. Missouri State
12. Purdue (11) - 43 -- Purdue looked awful against Cincinnati on Saturday and considering the Illini play Cincinnati this weekend I'm really hoping that it was more Purdue being awful than the Bearcats being that good. Next Game: vs. Indiana State
Last week's rankings can be found here.
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