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Big Ten Football Final Power Rankings: Michigan State Represents in the Rose Bowl
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9 Jan 2014 11:11 AM EST

-by Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Image: Michigan State wide out Tony Lippett stretches for touchdown in Rose Bowl. (Image Source: USA TODAY Sports)

Here are the final power rankings:

(1) Michigan State Spartans (Previous Rank: 2); Record: 13-1 (8-0)

Bowl Game: Won vs. Stanford 24-20

By becoming a more balanced team down the stretch, the Spartans proved they can play with anyone in the country. A team that could have made some noise if the playoffs were in place.

(2) Ohio State Buckeyes (Previous Rank: 1); Record: 12-2 (8-0)

Bowl Game: Lost vs. Clemson 40-35

In the final three games, the Buckeyes allowed a whopping 115 points (38.3 PPG) and they are now 0-2 against top 15 teams under Urban Meyer. Is that being a hater or stating facts?

(3) Wisconsin Badgers (Previous Rank: 3); Record: 9-4 (6-2)

Bowl Game: Lost vs. South Carolina 34-24

They ran the ball surprisingly well against the Gamecocks, but simply couldn’t match their speed and athleticism, as the Badgers ended the season in a whimper with consecutive losses.

(4) Iowa Hawkeyes (Previous Rank: 4); Record: 8-5 (5-3)

Bowl Game: Lost vs. LSU 21-14

While they played LSU to within a TD, QB Jake Rudock (9 of 22 passing, 0 TDs, 1 INT) and RB Mark Weisman (2.1 YPC) were exposed by what had been a solid, but not great Tigers D in 2013.

(5) Nebraska Cornhuskers (Previous Rank: 6); Record: 9-4 (5-3)

Bowl Game: Won vs. Georgia 24-19

Despite being out-gained by over 100 yards by UGA, the Huskers came away with a nice NYD’s W. Most impressive was the job they did on RB Todd Gurley (86 yards, 4.1 YPC).

(6) Minnesota Golden Gophers (Previous Rank: 5); Record: 8-5 (4-4)

Bowl Game: Lost vs. Syracuse 21-17

Unable to protect their lead in the final minutes, the Gophers suffered probably the worst bowl loss of any Big Ten club, as they fell to a rather mediocre ACC team in Syracuse.

(7) Michigan Wolverines (Previous Rank: 7); Record: 7-6 (3-5)

Bowl Game: Lost vs. Kansas State 31-14

The loss of QB Devin Gardner killed their chances of building on their 41-point effort in their regular season finale, but it was no excuse for allowing 21 first-half points.

(8) Penn State Nittany Lions (Previous Rank: 8); Record: 7-5 (4-4)

Bowl Game: Did Not Go to a Bowl

Bigger than any bowl loss, the Nittany Lions lost their headman Bill O’Brien, who did a very good job in his two seasons in Happy Valley. You can’t blame him for going to the NFL.

(9) Northwestern Wildcats (Previous Rank: 9); Record: 5-7 (1-7)

Bowl Game: Did Not Go to a Bowl

The Wildcats must still be trying to figure out how they missed out on making a bowl game. Maybe they were overrated heading into the season, but still good enough to go bowling.

(10) Indiana Hoosiers (Previous Rank: 10); Record: 5-7 (3-5)

Bowl Game: Did Not Go to a Bowl

They made some progress, some, but not significant progress. Next season, missing out on a bowl is not going to be good enough. The defense still has a long way to go.

(11) Illinois Fighting Illini (Previous Rank: 11); Record: 4-8 (1-7)

Bowl Game: Did Not Go to a Bowl

Illinois was significantly better this past season but that’s more of a statement on how bad they were in 2012, because the 2013 Illini were still a pretty awful unit.

(12) Purdue Boilermakers (Previous Rank: 12); Record: 1-11 (0-8)

Bowl Game: Did Not Go to a Bowl

After making a bowl game a season ago, the first year of the Darrell Hazell era was a complete and utter disaster. He may already be on the hot seat.

Daniel Mogollon is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America. He is also a voter for the Thorpe and the Rotary Lombardi Award, as well as the Latino Sports MVP Awards. 

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