Ranking all the Big Ten games, from Week 1 to 14

I’ve spent the last few weeks offering my super-early thoughts on the  2014 football schedule. You can catch up here. Today, it’s time to compile my game rankings for all 14 weeks in one post.

What’s the one game you won’t want to miss each week? Hop inside to find out.

1. Wisconsin vs. LSU (in Houston)
2. Cal at Northwestern
3. Penn State vs. UCF (in Dublin, Ireland)
4. Ohio State at Navy (in Baltimore)
5. Rutgers at Washington State (Thursday in Seattle)
6. Appalachian State at Michigan
7. Northern Iowa at Iowa
8. Youngstown State at Illinois
9. Western Michigan at Purdue
10. Jacksonville State at Michigan State (Friday)
11. James Madison at Maryland
12. Florida Atlantic at Nebraska
13. Eastern Illinois at Minnesota (Thursday)
14. Indiana State at Indiana

1. Michigan State at Oregon
2. Michigan at Notre Dame
3. Virginia Tech at Ohio State
4. Northern Illinois at Northwestern
5. Maryland at South Florida
6. Middle Tennessee State at Minnesota
7. Akron at Penn State
8. Ball State at Iowa
9. Central Michigan at Purdue
10. Western Kentucky at Illinois
11. Howard at Rutgers
12. Western Illinois at Wisconsin
13. McNeese State at Nebraska

1. Nebraska at Fresno State
2. Minnesota at TCU
3. Penn State at Rutgers
4. Iowa State at Iowa
5. West Virginia at Maryland
6. Illinois at Washington
7. Purdue vs. Notre Dame (in Indianapolis)
8. Indiana at Bowling Green
9. Miami (Ohio) at Michigan
10. Kent State at Ohio State

1. Miami (Fla.) at Nebraska
2. Iowa at Pitt
3. Utah at Michigan
4. Indiana at Missouri
5. Maryland at Syracuse
6. San Jose State at Minnesota
7. Bowling Green at Wisconsin
8. Rutgers at Navy
9. Texas State at Illinois
10. Eastern Michigan at Michigan State
11. UMass at Penn State
12. Western Illinois at Northwestern
13. Southern Illinois at Purdue

1. Minnesota at Michigan
2. Northwestern at Penn State
3. Maryland at Indiana
4. Cincinnati at Ohio State
5. Illinois at Nebraska
6. Iowa at Purdue
7. South Florida at Wisconsin
8. Wyoming at Michigan State
9. Tulane at Rutgers

1. Nebraska at Michigan State
2. Wisconsin at Northwestern
3. Ohio State at Maryland
4. Purdue at Illinois
5. Michigan at Rutgers
6. North Texas at Indiana

1. Penn State at Michigan
2. Northwestern at Minnesota
3. Indiana at Iowa
4. Illinois at Wisconsin
5. Michigan State at Purdue

1. Nebraska at Northwestern
2. Michigan State at Indiana
3. Iowa at Maryland
4. Purdue at Minnesota
5. Rutgers at Ohio State

1. Michigan at Michigan State
2. Ohio State at Penn State
3. Maryland at Wisconsin
4. Minnesota at Illinois
5. Rutgers at Nebraska

1. Northwestern at Iowa
2. Indiana at Michigan
3. Maryland at Penn State
4. Wisconsin at Rutgers
5. Illinois at Ohio State
6. Purdue at Nebraska

1. Ohio State at Michigan State
2. Iowa at Minnesota
3. Michigan at Northwestern
4. Penn State at Indiana
5. Wisconsin at Purdue

1. Nebraska at Wisconsin
2. Northwestern at Notre Dame
3. Michigan State at Maryland
4. Ohio State at Minnesota
5. Iowa at Illinois
6. Indiana at Rutgers
7. Temple at Penn State

1. Wisconsin at Iowa
2. Minnesota at Nebraska
3. Maryland at Michigan
4. Indiana at Ohio State
5. Penn State at Illinois
6. Northwestern at Purdue
7. Rutgers at Michigan State

1. Michigan at Ohio State
2. Nebraska at Iowa (Friday)
3. Minnesota at Wisconsin
4. Michigan State at Penn State
5. Illinois at Northwestern
6. Purdue at Indiana
7. Rutgers at Maryland

About Tom Dienhart BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at btn.com/tomdienhart, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.


Your Opinion?
Show Comments (12 Comments)
MarkNMichigan on 6/20/2014 @ 11:20am EDT Said:

Huskers #1 game 5 of 14 weeks, #1 or #2 game 7 of 14 weeks !!

Doug on 6/20/2014 @ 1:50pm EDT Said:

Mark – yeah, the Huskers have a tough schedule with at MSU, Wisc and IA, and Fresno for that matter. Almost as tough as the Wolverines with at MSU, OSU and Notre Dame.

Christian on 6/20/2014 @ 2:48pm EDT Said:

That team up North @ Ohio State for sure! OH-IO!

Maureen H on 6/20/2014 @ 2:50pm EDT Said:

HUSKERS all the way , every week!!! would love someday to be able to go to the games..

vaudvillain on 6/20/2014 @ 3:29pm EDT Said:

If you average each team’s rankings for the entire season (an imperfect comparison, since different weeks have different numbers of games, and the ranking isn’t just about you, but also about who you play), you get:

3.083 Michigan
3.455 Wisconsin
3.500 Northwestern
3.667 Iowa
3.833 Ohio State
4.083 Minnesota
4.083 Nebraska
4.333 Penn State
4.417 Michigan State
4.500 Maryland
5.273 Indiana
5.692 Illinois
6.545 Rutgers
6.667 Purdue

Scott on 6/20/2014 @ 4:00pm EDT Said:

You forgot the Week 15 game — Nebraska vs. Michigan State in Indianapolis.

Scott on 6/20/2014 @ 4:08pm EDT Said:

Oh, the schedule was of course absurd, because so many teams considered to be big time programs didn’t play each other. Seems to be like it’s a cynical attempt to get more teams into good bowl games and maybe two teams in the playoff. Come on, Wisconsin paying nobody good from the East? The same for Iowa? Nebraska only playing MSU? It’s almost like Rutgers and Maryland exit primarily to serve as cannon fodder to the top half of programs from the other division so that they don’t have to play OSU, Penn State, MSU, and Michigan too often. We heard a lot about “parity based scheduling.” Let’s see that concept show up in the schedules.

Jason on 6/20/2014 @ 9:12pm EDT Said:

Actually, Scott, perhaps Rutgers and Maryland exist so OSU, Penn State and Michigan don’t have to play the teams you were bagging on and take the potential loss.

rusty on 6/21/2014 @ 4:03am EDT Said:


JMac on 6/21/2014 @ 7:58am EDT Said:

Good to see the Spartans projected 4 times to be in the game of the week. It would be interesting to see how this list compares with the actual product on the field. That would be a fun article the week leading up to the B1G championship game.

JMac on 6/21/2014 @ 8:16am EDT Said:

Most of us are aware of Wiscy/LSU, MSU/Oregon, & UM/ND. Taking a closer look at the schedule, there are a dozen other games that B1G teams need to win the majority of for the sake of league reputation.

Miami at Nebraska
Nebraska at Fresno State
Utah at UM
Cal at NW
WVU at Maryland
Maryland at Syracuse
Indiana at Mizzou
Iowa at Pitt
Virginia Tech at tOSU
Penn State vs UCF
ISU at Iowa
Minnesota at TCU

Lose too many of these and the talking heads will tee off on the league. I think 8-4 is the minimum needed with at least one out of three in feature games. Too bad we don’t have a home game in those three big ones.

HawkeyeShane83 on 6/22/2014 @ 11:44am EDT Said:

As a Hawkeyes fan, it’s sad that yet again the toughest non-B10 team is Iowa st. I wish they schedule tougher opponents. Not that they would win but I would live one year where they play a SEC or PAC12 team. Just get annoyed with the same NIowa or BallSt every year. There is never an argument to have that Iowas non-conf schedule is tough. I love what MSU is doing playing a team like Oregon.