Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Big Ten Bowl Eligibility Watch: Six teams bowl eligible, three teams one game away.

Bowl Eligibility Watch

Maryland vs. Michigan, Nov. 5. Image via umgoldblue.com.

The only movement on the Big Ten bowl eligibility race in Week 10 was that Indiana got its fifth win of the season over Rutgers. It joined Maryland and Iowa on the list of B1G teams with five wins. Both the Terrapins and Hawkeyes lost this past Saturday.

Bowl Eligible (Six or more wins)

Michigan (9-0)
Ohio State (8-1)
Minnesota (7-2)
Penn State (7-2)
Nebraska (7-2)
Wisconsin (7-2)

On the Brink (Five wins, one win needed for bowl eligibility)

Indiana (5-4) Week 11: vs. Penn St. (Nov. 12)
Iowa (5-4) Week 11: vs. Michigan (Nov. 12)
Maryland (5-4) Week 11: vs. Ohio St. (Nov. 12)

Maryland would seem to be the least likely of the three 5-4 teams to pull off an upset in Week 11. It's final two games of the season are against Nebraska on Nov. 19, and 2-7 Rutgers on Nov. 26. Of Maryland's last three games, Rutgers is the one most likely to give it the coveted sixth win.

Indiana upsetting Penn St. isn't quite out of the question, but the Hoosiers' best chance for a sixth win would seem to be against 3-6 Purdue. Don't even ask about the Nov. 19 road trip to Michigan.

On the other hand the chances of Iowa upsetting Michigan probably are a little higher. It's best chance for a sixth win will probably come in Week 12 against 3-6 Illinois. The Hawkeyes end the season hosting Nebraska on Nov. 25.

Running Out of Days (Four wins, two wins needed for bowl eligibility)

Northwestern (4-5) Week 11: @Purdue (Nov. 12)

Northwestern becoming bowl eligible is quite doable in the final three weeks of the season. The Wildcats face Purdue this coming Saturday, 7-2 Minnesota on Nov. 19, and  Illinois on Nov. 26. The team should be favored against the Boilermakers and Illini.

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