College Football 2015: Big Ten Pre-Season Power Rankings
14. Purdue- Purdue struggled big time last year on offense and defense. They have one big ten win in their last two seasons. They just have not been competitive and I don’t see it changing this year. I see another long season for Purdue.
13. Rutgers- Despite their 8-5 record Rutgers defense struggled against good teams. Their offense made up for the lack of defense. They have lost their starting quarterback, which should have a huge impact on their offense. I think that their offense and defense will both struggle this season.
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12. Maryland- Unfortunately the Terrapins have one of the hardest Big Ten schedules. Maryland will have a new quarterback this season. They have acquired a new defensive coordinator to reboot their defense that struggled last season. I think if will be a rough year with a hard schedule and a young team.
11. Illinois- Quarterback injuries hurt this Illinois team last season. Hopefully Wes Lunt can stay healthy all year to help out this offense. The defense will be questionable; they have some talented guys up front. They have a tough schedule, which I think will hurt them. I would consider 6 wins a great season for them.
10. Indiana- Indiana finished last season with a record of 4-8 winning only one game against big ten opponents. They lose their best player on offense in running back Tevin Coleman. He ran for over 200 yards last year and will be almost impossible to replace. With that being said I feel that Indiana will struggle to put points on the board.
9. Northwestern- Northwestern have had to bad seasons in a row. Its looking like it might be three in a row. They will have to replace their quarterback and top receiver this year. They have a tough opener against Stanford but avoid Ohio State and Michigan State.
8. Iowa- The Hawkeyes catch a break in their schedule not having to play Ohio State or Michigan State. Iowa will begin the season with a new running back and new quarterback. They will need to improve their defense, last year they struggled at times. I think their offense will struggle to score points this year.
7. Minnesota- Coach Jerry Kill lead the Golden Gophers to a solid season last year. They only return 4 starters back on offense but should have a solid defense. Minnesota has a tough schedule opening up week 1 against TCU and then having to travel to Ohio State. I think Minnesota will have an average year.
6. Penn State- Penn State struggled last year mostly because of the inconsistent play of Quarterback Christian Hackenberg. With most of the offense returning he will be looking for a bounce back year. Penn State should have a solid defense and if Hackenburg can have a good year Penn State could be dangerous.
5. Nebraska- The Cornhuskers have hired Mike Riley to be their new head coach. He will be welcomed to a solid all around team. They are lead by quarterback Tommy Armstrong who is a dual threat. They have a tough out of conference schedule but should be able to get nine wins.
4. Michigan- Michigan has made a big step in their program by hiring Jim Harbaugh. I think they will feel the effects of him immediately. They need to find a quarterback first off and besides that Michigan has a solid defense. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Michigan have a good year.
3. Wisconsin- Wisconsin lost one of the best running backs in college football history in Melvin Gordon. Fortunately they have a back up with a lot of potential in Corey Clement. Wisconsin has a solid offense and defense and even with a new head coach, Wisconsin should be back in the Big Ten Championship game.
2. MichiganState- The Spartans only two losses last year were to Oregon and Ohio State who played against each other for the national championship. Michigan states biggest losses were on the defensive side. Conner Cook is back for his senior year and has gotten better each season. He will lead this team to another great season. Their biggest games this year will be against Oregon and Ohio State.
1. Ohio State- After winning the National Championship Urban Meyer has Ohio State set for another Big Ten win as well as another shot in the playoffs. Ohio State as one of the most talented rosters in the nation. Ezekiel Elliot was a monster last year and is a Heisman contender this year. It doesn’t matter who starts at quarterback for the Buckeyes they will be one of the best teams in the country.
Big Ten Overview- Ohio State is the team to beat in this conference. They are the heavy favorite to win and I believe they will win. I think that they are far better then the rest of teams in this conference and will go undefeated in their regular season.