There was no shortage of drama around the Big Ten in week eight.
Ohio State-Purdue, Michigan-Michigan State and Nebraska-Northwestern all provided quality entertainment for Big Ten fans.
Without its star quarterback Braxton Miller, Ohio State was able to improve to 8-0 with an improbable come-from-behind overtime victory over Purdue. We all saw the drama that was the OSU-Purdue game, but let’s take a closer look at what happened in a wild week eight around the Big Ten.
Trailing 10-9 with just five seconds left, Michigan’s Brendan Gibbons nailed a 38-yard field goal to help lift Michigan over Michigan State for the first time since 2007. The victory was the 900th in the history of the Michigan program–making it the first to reach that milestone.
Not only was the win big for the history of Michigan, but it helped the Wolverines improve to 3-0 in the Big Ten as they now sit alone atop the Legends Division. The loss drops Sparty to a dismal 1-3 record in the conference and 4-4 overall.
Another thrilling game took place in Evanston as Nebraska downed Northwestern 29-28. The Huskers took the lead with just over two minutes to play in the game and were able to barely hang on as Northwestern kicker Jeff Budzien’s 53-yard field goal attempt missed wide right with roughly a minute to play.
The win for Nebraska sets up a huge game with Michigan next week in which the winner will be in the driver’s seat to represent the Legends Division in the B1G Championship Game.
Wisconsin won its third consecutive game as the Badgers defeated Minnesota 38-13. Penn State routed Iowa 38-14 and in non conference action, Indiana fell 31-30 to Navy. The win for Navy is its first against a Big Ten opponent since 1979. So thank you for that, Hoosiers.
Next week would be even bigger if Ohio State and Penn State were eligible to compete in postseason play. The Buckeyes and Nittany Lions are the only two undefeated teams in the Leaders Division and will meet next week in Happy Valley as the Game of the Week in the Big Ten.
The Michigan at Nebraska game will likely decide the Legends Division. While people were ready to write off Michigan after two early losses to Alabama and Notre Dame (both teams are currently ranked in the top five, by the way), the Wolverines have rebounded to get themselves to 5-2 overall and No. 22 in the country.
But playing a night game in Lincoln against a good Nebraska team is a very difficult thing to do. I’m excited to watch that one, and to see how the rest of the Big Ten season will unfold.