Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Ohio St., Penn St., four other Big Ten teams are bowl eligible.

Five Big Ten teams are bowl eligible following week five. The quintet of teams with six or more wins  so far in the 2017 season includes Ohio St., Penn St., Michigan St.  Michigan, and Wisconsin. Northwestern has five wins, and could join the above schools as early as next week.

Bowl projections (unless otherwise noted) are from Jerry Palm of CBS Sports, and Jason Kirk of SB*Nation

Six or more wins (Bowl eligible)


Big Ten East


Ohio State (7-1, conference 5-0)

Next four weeks

Nov. 4 @ Iowa

Nov. 11 vs. Michigan State

Nov. 18 vs. Illinois

Nov. 25 @ Michigan

Iowa. Michigan State, and Michigan will not be pushover games for Ohio St.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2018 Rose Bowl Game vs. Clemson (Jan 1, 2018. Pasadena, CA. College Football Playoff semifinal no. 2 vs. no.3)

Kirk: 2018 Rose Bowl Game vs. Georgia

It would appear the dream of seeing a Rose Bowl sans both the Big Ten and the Pac-12 has faded for the season.

Penn State (7-1, conference 4-1)

Next four games

Nov. 4 @ Michigan St.

Nov. 11 vs. Rutgers

Nov. 18 vs. Nebraska

Nov. 25 @ Maryalnd

Michigan St. is the biggest stumbling block for Penn State's chances of getting back into contention for the College Football Playoff on its schedule.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2018 Sugar Bowl vs. Alabama (Jan. 1, 2018, New Orleans, LA. (CFP semifinal no. 1 vs no. 4)

Kirk: 2017 Cotton Bowl vs. Oklahoma (Dec. 29, Arlington, TX.)

Kirk's projection is the saner of the two bowl projections.

Michigan State (6-2, conference 4-1)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Penn St.

Nov. 11 @ Ohio St.

Nov. 18 vs. Maryland

Nov. 25 @ Rutgers

The safe bet is that Michigan St. goes 2-2 in the last four games of the season. But, as many teams have learned, betting against Sparty is never a good idea.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2018 Citrus Bowl vs. Auburn (Jan 1, 2018, Orlando, Fl.

Kirk: 2018 Citrus Bowl vs. LSU

The Citrus Bowl sounds like the best place for Michigan St. this season.

Michigan (6-2, conference 3-2)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Minnesota

Nov. 11 @ Maryland

Nov. 18 @ Wisconsin

Nov. 25 vs. Ohio St.

Minnesota, Maryland, and Wisconsin are the easiest games on the remainder  of the Nittany Lions' schedule.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2018 Outback Bowl vs. LSU (Jan. 1, 2018, Tampa, FL.)

Kirk: 2018 Outback Bowl vs. Auburn

More agreement here, at least for the bowl Michigan may be headed for.

Big Ten West


Wisconsin (8-0, conference 5-0)

Next four games

Nov. 4 @ Indiana

Nov. 11 vs. Iowa

Nov. 18 vs. Michigan

Nov. 25 @ Minnesota

Wisconsin is getting  overlooked for the CFP. Most logical reason is that the CFB media sees the Badgers being 2017's version of 2015 Iowa.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Fiesta Bowl vs. USC (Dec. 30, Glendale, AZ.)

Kirk: 2018 Peach Bowl vs. Central Florida (Jan. 1, 2018, Atlanta, GA.)

The Fiesta Bowl is most definitely the more perforable projection here.

Five wins (Magic number: 1)


Big Ten East


None

Big Ten West


Northwestern (5-3, conference 3-2)

Next four weeks

Nov. 4 @ Nebraska

Nov. 11 vs, Purdue

Nov. 18 vs. Minnesota

Nov. 25 @ Illinois

While no one should ever feel too overconfident of a team's ability to get to six wins, of All of these games are winnable for Northwestern. Get the win, then it's all about avoiding the Quick Lane Bowl.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm:  2017 Holliday Bowl vs. Arizona (Dec. 28, San Diego, CA.

Kirk: 2017 Forster Farms Bowl vs. Stanford (Dec. 27 @ Santa Clara, CA.)

Northwestern vs. Stanford...NERD BOWL1

Four games (Magic number: 2)


Big Ten East 


Maryland (4-4, conference 2-3)

Next four games 

Nov. 4 @ Rutgers

Nov. 11 vs. Michigan

Nov. 18 @ Michigan St.

Nov. 25 vs. Penn St.

The only easy game for Maryland is Rutgers.

Projected bowl and opponent

Eric Single, SI.com: 2017 Pinstripe Bowl vs. Syracuse (Dec. 27, New York City, NY)

Only one of five prognosticators surveyed had Maryland going to a bowl.

Big Ten West

Nebraska (4-4, conference 3-2)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Northwestern

Nov. 11 @Minnesota

Nov. 18 @ Penn St.

Nov. 24 vs. Iowa

Northwestern and Minnesota are where the best chances for the Cornhuskers to earn the two wins they need to become bowl eligible.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: None

Kirk: 2017 Pinstripe bowl vs. Syracuse.

Mike Riley is probably toast when the season  ends, if not sooner.

Minnesota (4-4, conference 1-4)

Next four games

Nov. 4 @ Michigan

Nov. 11 vs. Nebraska

Nov. 18 @ Northwestern

Nov. 25 vs. Wisconsin

Underperforming Nebraska and Northwestern teams may be the best places on Minnesota's upcoming schedule to earn two wins.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Pinstripe Bowl vs. Boston College

Kirk: None

Disappointing projected end to P.J. Fleck's first season as head coach of the Golden Gophers

Three wins (Magic number: 3)


Big Ten East


Rutgers (3-5, conference 2-3)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Maryland

Nov. 11 @ Penn St.

Nov. 18 @ Indiana

Nov. 25 vs. Michigan St.

With Rutgers we enter the  "The impossible takes a little longer" territory.

Projected bowl and opponent

None

Indiana (3-5, conference 0-5)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Wisconsin

Nov. 11 @ Illinois

Nov. 18 vs. Rutgers

Nov. 25 @ Purdue

The chances for Indiana to go to a bowl look to be higher than those of Rutgers.

Projected bowl and opponent 

Palm: None

Kirk: 2017 Music City Bowl vs. Texas A&M (Dec. 29, Nashville, TN.)

There is a chance this could be a case of a 5-6 team getting a bowl bid through academics.

Big Ten West


Purdue (3-5, conference 1-4)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Illinois

Nov. 11 @ Northwestern

Nov. 18 @ Iowa

Nov. 25 vs. Indiana

Purdue will need to beat Illinois and Indiana, and pull an upset of either Northwestern or Iowa for a the Boilermakers to earn a bowl bid.

Projected bowl and opponent

None

Maybe next season, Purdue.






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