Charboneau’s AP vote: MSU, UM rise as Big Ten powers tumble

Matt Charboneau
The Detroit News
Michigan State's Cody White makes a catch over Penn State's Amani Oruwariye in the second quarter. After a review the pass was ruled incomplete.

It was a big week near the top of the rankings and none of it was good for the Big Ten.

While Michigan State was celebrating a jump up the rankings and Iowa was rolling, none of it was positive overall for the conference as Ohio State – the Big Ten’s best shot at reaching the playoffs – got throttled by Iowa and the Spartans beat Penn State on the final play to hand the Nittany Lions their second straight loss.

That leaves Wisconsin as the only real hope for a spot on the playoffs. The Badgers remained unbeaten after taking out Indiana. And while I’ve got the Badgers in the top four, the lack of a signature win will likely keep them out of that spot by the playoff committee.

How it shakes out over the next few weeks remains to be seen, but Wisconsin simply must go unbeaten to have a shot.

Oklahoma takes a jump after winning a shootout with Oklahoma State while Miami remains unbeaten after topping Virginia Tech.

There’s plenty of big games left over the last few weeks and the conference championship games will be big, as well. But if the last couple weeks have been any indication, the shuffling is far from over and almost every top-10 team has a shot at reaching the playoffs.

Michigan State jumps to No. 14 from No. 21 on my ballot this week while Michigan, which pounded Minnesota, improves to 20th from 23rd.


1. Alabama (last week: 1)

2. Georgia (2)

3. Notre Dame (4)

4. Wisconsin (5)

5. Clemson (8)

6. Oklahoma (9)

7. Miami (11)

8. Washington (10)

9. TCU (13)

10. Ohio State (3)

11. Oklahoma State (6)

12. Southern Cal (14)

13. Auburn (15)

14. Michigan State (21)

15. Penn State (7)

16. Virginia Tech (12)

17. UCF (16)

18. Memphis (19)

19. Washington State (NR)

20. Michigan (23)

21. South Florida (NR)

22. LSU (17)

23. Mississippi State (24)

24. N.C. State (20)

25. Stanford (18)