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Fan ballots: Who wins this week's Big Ten football games? Select your winners inside.

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7:00 PMPrinceton at Michigan St.Watch
7:00 PMCanisius at Penn St.Watch
8:00 PMNorthwestern at IowaWatch
8:00 PMRutgers at MinnesotaWatch
8:05 PMSt. Cloud St. at MinnesotaWatch

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Top 25 Big Ten football teams over the past 25 years

Last week, the Associated Press released their Top 100 college football teams of the past 80 years. A total of seven Big Ten teams landed on the list, highlighted by Ohio State at No. 1 overall. The Buckeyes have ranked in the AP Poll for more weeks than any other team (852) during that span, including the most at No. 1 (105). This got me thinking, who are the best Big Ten teams in recent memory? Obviously, the 2014 Ohio State Buckeyes come to mind in recent memory, but what about before that? I got together with senior writer

Nov 14, 2015; Piscataway, NJ, USA;  Nebraska Cornhuskers wide receiver Jordan Westerkamp (1) returns Rutgers Scarlet Knights punt during the first half at High Points Solutions Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

Dienhart: Your Big Ten football team's toughest 2016 stretch

Every coach looks at a schedule, scanning the list of games. Which ones figure to be tough ones? Even more vital: Which stretch of games figures to be the most daunting, a potential make-or-break run of contests? [ MORE: Best chance to pull upset | Best chance to be upset | Toughest non-conference games | Toughest conference game ] I have identified the toughest stretch of games on each Big Ten schedule. Illinois. The last four games are daunting. The season-ending run begins with a visit from Michigan State on Nov. 5 followed by a trip to Wisconsin, a visit

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Dienhart: Best chance for each Big Ten team to get upset

No coach wants to lose a game that experts think he’s supposed to win. Upsets can set a season on its ear and prove ruinous. [ MORE: Best chance to pull upset | Toughest non-conference games | Toughest conference game ] There are potholes on every schedule. And I have picked the one game on your school’s schedule in which it has its best chance to be—gulp–upset. Illinois. The visit from Western Michigan on Sept. 17 is dangerous. P.J. Fleck is an up-and-coming coaching fireball who played at Northern Illinois and is a native of the state. You know the

Nov 28, 2015; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Golden Gophers quarterback Mitch Leidner (7) celebrates with Minnesota Golden Gophers running back Rodney Smith (24) after scoring a touchdown in the first half against the Wisconsin Badgers at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Dienhart: See your team's toughest 2016 conference game

There are games on every team’s schedule that fans circle as “tough” ones, games that will be very challenging to win. Well, that’s what I did with each Big Ten schedule, identifying each school’s “toughest” Big Ten game in 2016. [ MORE: Best chance to pull upset | Toughest non-conference games ] Check it out below. Illinois. Lots to choose from. I’ll go with the trip to Michigan on Oct. 22. Jim Harbaugh has this program rolling as he enters Year Two in Ann Arbor. The defense could be the best in the Big Ten, while the offense will be

Nov 21, 2015; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Chris Godwin (12) makes a catch during the third quarter against the Michigan Wolverines at Beaver Stadium. Michigan defeated Penn State 28-16. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Dienhart: Toughest non-con game for each Big Ten team

There is no better way for a team to test itself than by playing a tough non-conference foe in September. Here is my pick for each team’s toughest non-league opponent.

Dec 28, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Minnesota Golden Gophers quarterback Mitch Leidner (7) celebrates his touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Central Michigan Chippewas at Ford Field. Minnesota won 21-14. Mandatory Credit: Sage Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Dienhart: Best chance for each Big Ten team to pull an upset

Who doesn’t love an upset? The shock. The surprise. The unexpectedness. It’s what makes sports fun. Last year gave us Michigan State over Ohio State, Purdue over Nebraska and Northwestern over Stanford, to name a few upsets. What’s in store this season? Here is my “best chance to pull an upset” for each Big Ten team this fall. Illinois. If the offense comes together, the Fighting Illini may have a shot to shock Iowa when the Hawkeyes visit Memorial Stadium on Nov. 19. But how beat up will Illinois be coming off a game the week before at Wisconsin? The

Nov 28, 2015; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer and Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh prior to the game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Big Ten Mailbag: MSU's o-line, Penn State's record and 'The Game'

Time to go through my mail. I look at Michigan State’s offensive line, project Penn State’s record and look at “The Game,” among other things. So, let’s get started! Last year, the Spartans were good, and made it to the playoffs with just one loss. But they struggled against Western Michigan, Purdue, Rutgers and Maryland. Yet, they beat teams like Oregon, Michigan, Ohio State and Iowa. I know a win is a win, but do you see this year’s team being able to dominate some of the lower-level teams as well as winning the big ones? – Ben Look, football

Sep 27, 2014; East Lansing, MI, USA; (EDITORS NOTE: caption correction) Michigan State Spartans quarterback Tyler O'Connor (7) looks to throw the ball against the Wyoming Cowboys during the 1st half of a game at Spartan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Big Ten links: Catch up on Friday's top Big Ten stories

David Jones of pays a nice tribute to former Northwestern coach Dennis Green, who did the impossible by making the Wildcats semi-competitive from 1981-85. *** looks at five things it learned about the Nittany Lions at Big Ten media days. The issue of other schools using negative recruiting vs. the Nittany Lions came up. It was a classic he said/she said affair that predictably went nowhere. We also learned this: Cam Brown could be a special LB. Remember the name for what could be a boffo set of linebackers. *** Ohio State made one of the most key

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Dienhart: Welcome to the 'Year of the Linebacker' in the Big Ten

If you like linebackers, you’ll love the Big Ten. It’s loaded with them. There’s Iowa’s Josey Jewell, Penn State’s Brandon Bell, Wisconsin’s Vince Biegel, Michigan State’s Riley Bullough, Purdue’s Ja’Whaun Bentley and Nebraska’s Josh Banderas. I could go on, and I think I will. There also is Minnesota’s Jack Lynn, Maryland’s Jermaine Carter, Indiana’s Marcus Oliver and Northwestern’s Anthony Walker. And don’t forget about Ohio State’s Raekwon McMillan, who will give Walker a run for his money as the Big Ten’s primo linebacker. If not Walker or McMillan, how about Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers, who is a newbie to the position.

Big Ten Player Survey: Best helmet? Best mascot? Big Ten favorite?

CHICAGO — The Big Ten’s best players were in Chicago on Monday and Tuesday for the annual Big Ten Football Media Days. [ MORE: Tom Dienhart’s Best of Day 1 | Best of Day 2 ] As does every year, we conducted a player survey that included a respondent from all 13 schools in attendance (Nebraska did not attend the event due to punter Sam Foltz’s death). Here were the rules: Players’ answers were anonymous and they could not use their school for any answer. BEST HELMET Maryland – 6 Michigan; Ohio State – 2 Indiana; Iowa; Rutgers –