Jim Rossow's Big Ten report: Are Spartans primed for upset?

THE STANDINGS

LEADERS DIVISION
TEAM               BIG TEN     ALL
Ohio State    3    0    7    0
Wisconsin    3    1    5    2
Penn State    1    1    4    2
Indiana    1    2    3    4
Illinois    0    2    3    3
Purdue    0    3    1    6

LEGENDS DIVISION
Michigan State    3    0    6    1
Nebraska    2    0    5    1
Michigan    2    1    6    1
Minnesota    1    2    5    2
Iowa    1    2    4    3
Northwestern    0    3    4    3

THE SCHEDULE

Want to know which of Saturday’s games are worth your while? Here’s the scoop from sports editor JIM ROSSOW, who went 3-2 last week and has the Red Sox winning in six games:

Northwestern at Iowa
11 a.m., BTN

The teams aren’t very good, but their kickers are. Northwestern’s Jeff Budzien leads the Big Ten with 12 field goals and has made a Big Ten-record 127 consecutive PATs. Iowa’s Mike Meyer isn’t far behind with nine field goals and 105 straight PATs.

Rossow’s pick: Northwestern, 15-12

Nebraska at Minnesota
11 a.m., ESPN

Anyone still mad at Bo Pelini? Cornhuskers have won eight Big Ten games in a row, their longest conference winning streak since 2001, when they were in the Big 12. Big Red hasn’t won nine in a row since going on a 40-game Big Eight/Big 12 run from 1992 to ’98.  

Rossow’s pick: Nebraska, 35-27

Michigan State at Illinois
2:30 p.m., WICD (ABC)

Since 2010, Sparty has held 12 opponents to fewer than 10 points. In that same span, Illinois has allowed opponents to score at least 50 points five times.

Rossow’s pick: Illinois, 23-17

Penn State at Ohio State
7 p.m., WICD (ABC)

Attention Christian Hackenberg: Since 2002, Buckeyes have returned an interception for a touchdown a remarkable eight times against the Nittany Lions: Ryan Shazier (2012), Devon Torrence (‘10), Travis Howard (‘10), Malcolm Jenkins (‘07, ‘06), Antonio Smith (‘06), Tyler Everett (‘04) and Chris Gamble (‘02).

Rossow’s pick: Ohio State, 28-21

LOOKING AHEAD

Coaches like to take it one game at a time. Not us:

NOV.  2
Illinois at Penn State    11 a.m.
Wisconsin at Iowa    11 a.m.
Ohio State at Purdue    11 a.m.
Michigan at Michigan State    2:30 p.m.
Minnesota at Indiana    2:30 p.m.
Northwestern at Nebraska    2:30 p.m.

NOV.  9
Illinois    at Indiana
Iowa    at Purdue
Penn State    at Minnesota
Nebraska    at Michigan
BYU    at Wisconsin

AWARD STAND

MVP
NAME, SCHOOL    PREVIOUS
Max Bullough, Michigan State    —
Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin    1
Christian Hackenberg, Penn State    2
Ryan Shazier, Ohio State    4
Ameer Abdullah, Nebraska    3

ILLINI MVP
NAME    PREVIOUS
Nathan Scheelhaase    3
Josh Ferguson    1
Jonathan Brown    2
Zane Petty    —
Fireworks operator    —

COACH OF THE YEAR
COACH, SCHOOL    PREVIOUS
Urban Meyer, Ohio State    1
Mark Dantonio, Michigan State    2
Bill O’Brien, Penn State    3
Gary Andersen, Wisconsin    4
Bo Pelini, Nebraska    5

BOWL OUTLOOK
BOWL    TEAM
BCS title game    Ohio State
Rose    Michigan State
Capital One    Wisconsin
Outback    Nebraska
Gator    Michigan

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