The Big Ten East Division is in the hands of Ohio State after Saturday’s thrashing of Michigan State, but it’s not locked up yet.
Ohio State, Michigan State, Penn State and Michigan all still have a mathematical shot at winning the division and reaching the conference championship game.
But the fact remains, with two games to play, it’s still not certain which team will take on West Division champion Wisconsin in Indianapolis on Dec. 2.
Here’s a look at what each team faces.
Ohio State (8-2, 6-1) – The Buckeyes have the simplest path of all the teams as they hold a one-game lead over each of the other three teams with head-to-head wins over Penn State and Michigan State. Win both games against Illinois and Michigan and OSU is in. A win over Illinois this week would eliminate Penn State and Michigan State and it would clinch the top spot if Michigan also loses at Wisconsin. If Michigan wins at Wisconsin and Penn State and Michigan State each lose at least one of its final two games, the Buckeyes would need to beat the Wolverines in the final week.
Michigan State (7-3, 5-2) – The Spartans’ path is also straight-forward, just not as likely. They’ll need to beat both Maryland and Rutgers – that’s the easy part – but they’d need Ohio State to lose to both Illinois and Michigan.
Penn State (8-2, 5-2) – The Nittany Lions need a bit more help. They’d need to win both of their last two games against Nebraska and Maryland, have Ohio State lose each of its final two games and have Michigan State drop at least one of its final two.
Michigan (8-2, 5-2) – The Wolverines not only need the most help, they have the toughest schedule remaining. To win the East, they’d need to beat both Wisconsin and Ohio State and have Michigan State and Penn State lose one of their last two games.