With a 2009 that featured two BCS bowl game winners, a Capital One Bowl victory, and a Champs Sports Bowl victory, there is a lot of buzz going into the 2010 Big Ten football season that hasn't been felt in years.
Three teams have a legitimate shot at the Big Ten title, and, if they play their cards right, a national title isn't out of the question.
Ohio State, Iowa, and Wisconsin are all hoping to end 2010 with a Big Ten championship, while Penn State and Michigan State are lurking in the shadows, looking to steal the crown away from one of the favorites.
So, as spring is quickly turning into summer, it's about time to start thinking about the upcoming Big Ten season.
Well, maybe it is a little early. But who cares? For a college football fan, there's nothing better to do.
Here is a quick preview for every Big Ten conference game in the 2010 season. Enjoy.
The Illinois Fighting Illini come into the 2010 season reeling from a 2009 that saw them finish 3-9 overall and only 2-6 in the Big Ten. Plus, in the offseason, they lost their starting quarterback (Juice Williams), one of the most dynamic wide receivers in the Big Ten (Arrelious Benn), and five of their defensive starters.
Now, some may say that's a good thing. After all, Williams had a subpar 2009 and never developed into the quarterback Illini coaches thought he would be. Benn, partially because of the inept quarterback play, had a poor season as well.
As for their defense? They allowed over 30 points a game in 2009. To the departed starters, good riddance.
But, that said, they're coming into 2010 with inexperienced players and almost zero confidence.
There are some bright spots however.
Starting running back Mikel LeShoure (734 yards in 2009) returns, as well as leading tackler Ian Thomas and sack artist Clay Nurse.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Nathan Scheelhause has emerged as the top candidate to take over for Juice and wide receiver A.J. Jenkins seems poised to bounce back from a poor 2009.
Too bad their 2010 Big Ten campaign is going to get off to a rough start. They face The Ohio State University, defending Big Ten champions, and favorite to win the 2010 crown.
Ohio State: 35
Much like Illinois, Indiana is coming into the 2010 season hoping for much better results than in 2009. The Hoosiers finished tied for dead-last in the Big Ten last year with a 1-7 conference record and 4-8 record overall.
However, they lost most of their defense (only four returning starters), so they'll have to rely on an offense that could potentially make some noise next season.
The Hoosier 'O' returns eight starters, including quarterback Ben Chappell, running back Darius Willis, and both starting wide receivers (Tandon Doss and Demarlo Belcher).
Chappell threw for almost 3,000 yards and 17 touchdowns last year and Willis ran for over 600 yards.
As for their defense, the Hoosiers have decided to switch to a 3-4 alignment to maximize their athleticism (most notably their two new starting defensive ends, Darius Johnson and Kevin Bush).
However, do expect some growing pains on defense. They allowed almost 30 points a game last year and although they may have some enthusiasm coming into next year, expect similar numbers.
Their first Big Ten game of the year is at home, which should more than give them more than a fighting chance, especially against a Michigan team that has just as many questions as the Hoosiers.
After an Orange Bowl victory over Georgia Tech and 11-2 finish in 2009, expectations really couldn't be much higher in Iowa City.
However, the Hawkeyes lost virtually their entire offensive line, including left tackle Brian Bulaga, their tight end (Tony Moeaki), and three of their best defensive players (LB Pat Angerer, LB A.J. Edds, and CB Amari Spievey) in the offseason.
But the good news is that they return almost everyone else.
Led by quarterback Ricky Stanzi, Iowa's offense wasn't anything spectacular last year, but it was good enough to put points on the board while the Hawkeye defense shut down opponents.
Stanzi will need to cut down his interceptions however (15 in 2009) if the Hawkeyes want to make it back to a BCS game. He'll have Marvin McNutt and Derrell Johnson-Koulianos to throw to and Adam Robinson to hand off to. After missing spring ball though, Robinson may have some competition heading into the fall.
On defense, the undisputed leader is defensive end Adrian Clayborn. With 11.5 sacks last year, Clayborn was one of the top ends in the country and will look to repeat that performance this year.
Replacing Angerer in the middle will likely be Jeff Tarpinian. He'll have some big cleats to fill. Angerer was first team All-Big Ten last year.
For Iowa, with the way their schedule stacks up, a Rose Bowl berth is in their sights, but a national championship appearance isn't out of the question.
In their Big Ten home opener, the Hawks get a rebuilding Penn State squad. It will be a good challenge, but in the end, Iowa should come out on top.
Penn State: 13
Although they finished 2009 at a disappointing 6-7 and ended up tied for sixth in the conference, Michigan State has some big expectations for 2010.
And those expectations center around putting up as many points as possible.
Led by junior quarterback Kirk Cousins, who passed for almost 2,700 yards and 19 touchdowns last year, the Spartan offense should be one of the most high-powered in the country.
Although they lost All-Big Ten wideout Blair White and two offensive linemen, MSU will still be hard to stop.
They bring back wide receiver Mark Dell, running back Larry Caper, and are trying to convert ex-backup quarterback Keith Nichol into the No. 2 option for Cousins.
On the other hand, their defense may struggle. And if there is a reason why the Spartans won't compete for the Big Ten title, it's this.
Last year, the Spartans gave up over 25 points a game and their secondary continually struggled. All-American linebacker Greg Jones can only do so much.
If the secondary can step up their game, they may have a chance, but if not, expect Michigan State victories to come in the form of shootouts.
As far as their Big Ten home opener against Wisconsin, you're probably not going to see a better game that weekend.
Both teams pose powerful offenses with questionable defenses. However, the Badger defense may be a bit better than their Spartan counterparts.
Michigan State: 34
After hoping to at least compete for a Big Ten title last year, the Minnesota Golden Gophers may just be hoping to compete in the Big Ten this year.
Whereas last year the Gophers completely underachieved, going 6-7 and losing their bowl game to Iowa State, this year it will be pretty hard for them to do anything but overachieve. Expectations are pretty low.
Although Minnesota's offense may keep them in some games, it won't be enough. After a brilliant start to his college career, quarterback Adam Weber found himself competing for his own job this spring and though it appears as though it's his to lose, if the Gophers are out of the race early, he may find himself on the bench.
He will also be without his top target, Eric Decker, a safety net that Weber's gotten used to. The rest of their offense is pretty much intact.
Their defense, on the other hand, is a different story.
The Gophers lost nine of their starters this offseason and though the coaches are excited about their brand-new defensive line, it will be a rough year.
There is uncertainty at every linebacker position and in the secondary as well. Unless a bunch of players emerge as stars, this defense could end up being one of the worst in the Big Ten just because of inexperience.
In their Big Ten opener, Minnesota faces a Northwestern team that is also rebuilding, but it won't be enough to give them the upset.
After an 11-2 season that included a Capital One Bowl victory over LSU, Penn State will have somewhat of a rebuilding season in 2010.
Not to say they can't compete for a Big Ten title, but with the strength of the Big Ten this year, it appears unlikely.
On offense, the Nittany Lions lose their quarterback (Daryll Clark), their tight end (Andrew Quarless) and their left tackle (Dennis Landolt). Needless to say, it's not going to be easy finding a replacement for any of those three.
They do return star running back Evan Royster (1,169 yards in 2009) and their top two receivers (Derek Moye and Graham Zug). But if no one can pass them the ball, what does that accomplish?
Kevin Newsome and Matt McGloin are the frontrunners to step in for Clark, but if neither of them prove they're an adequate replacement, true freshman Paul Jones may get a shot.
On defense, despite losing their three starting linebackers, it looks as though the Lions are going to be just fine. In the tradition of Linebacker U., Penn State just reloads.
Nate Stupar, Mike Yancich, and Gerald Hodges look like they should be able to step up to fill the gap.
On the defensive line, Penn State lost defensive end Jack Crawford and tackle Ollie Ogbu, but this unit also appears as though it will be fine.
Penn State's Big Ten home opener should get them back on track after a likely loss to Iowa in the previous week.
Penn State: 28
After last year's Rose Bowl victory over Oregon, The Ohio State University has only one goal on their mind: win the national championship.
And why shouldn't they?
They'll likely begin the year as the No. 2 team in the country and return all but one of their starters on offense.
Led by Heisman candidate Terrelle Pryor, the Buckeye offense should be one of the best in the Big Ten. Using both his arm and his legs, Pryor is one of the most difficult players in the country to stop.
He not only led the Buckeyes in passing last year, but in rushing as well, and if his performance in the Rose Bowl is any indication, he is finally going to live up to his reputation as the former No. 1 recruit in the nation.
Along with Pryor, the Buckeyes have a duo of running backs in Brandon Seine and Dan Herron and wide receivers in DeVier Posey and Dane Sanzenbacher returning for the 2010 season.
On defense, the Buckeyes lost seven players from last year's team, including both starting safeties and two defensive linemen.
That said, the defense does have the benefit of having two All-Big Ten linebackers (Ross Homan and Brian Rolle) leading the way in 2010.
Although there may be a little inexperience on their defense heading into next year, don't expect much of a dropoff.
As far as their Big Ten home opener, Indiana should be improved from last year, but still won't pose much of a challenge.
Ohio State: 34
There is probably no team in the nation under more pressure to perform well in 2010 than the Michigan Wolverines. Because if they don't, head coach Rich Rodriguez could be gone.
After a 5-7 finish in 2009, which included a last place finish in the Big Ten, Michigan needs to play better in 2010. For Rodriguez's sake, for the players' sake, for the fans' sake.
They do return a number of their starters on both offense and defense, so if there isn't some noticeable improvement, Rodriguez's days in Ann Arbor may be numbered.
However, the one huge question going into this season is centered around who will be taking snaps come September. Although Tate Forcier was the starter for most of last year, it appears as though Denard Robinson may take over the role.
Whatever happens, if there is inconsistency at the quarterback position, Michigan's offense is doomed.
They already lost their top two running backs this offseason. No running game + inconsistent passing game = one long year trying to move the ball.
On defense, the Wolverines return all but three of their starters and should be sitting in pretty good shape.
Their pass rush took a hit losing Brandon Graham to the NFL, but their secondary actually appears to be improving after a terrible 2009. Wide receiver Cameron Gordon was converted to cornerback and should provide a boost to the defense.
However, the Wolverines look as though they may get off to a rough start in the Big Ten.
They face in-state rival Michigan State in their conference home opener and the Paul Bunyan Trophy could very well be heading back to East Lansing.
Playing in the Big House is no easy task, but Sparty's offense may just be too powerful to stop.
Michigan State: 36
With a surprise victory over Miami in the Champs Sports Bowl and the return of almost all their offensive starters, expectations haven't been this high in Madison since the Rose Bowl years of the late 1990s.
On offense, Wisconsin lost only tight end Garrett Graham and will return Heisman contender running back John Clay, their two top receivers (Nick Toon and Isaac Anderson), quarterback Scott Tolzien, and their entire offensive line.
And remember, this is virtually the same offense that put up almost 33 points a game last year. Expect that and more from 2010's squad.
Defensively, Bucky isn't quite as full-proof. Last year, Wisky gave up almost 23 points a game and lost five starters in the offseason, including star defensive end O'Brien Schofield and leading tackler Jaevery McFadden.
But, J.J. Watt appears more than capable of taking over Schofield's role as a sack machine and the linebacking corps should be stronger than ever, with star-in-the-making sophomore 'backer Chris Borland anchoring the crew.
The secondary is a little more iffy, especially with the graduation of safety Chris Maragos. Jay Valai should take over as the leader and best player, but there are still questions about the cornerback play and whether Aaron Henry can transition from corner to safety
Wisconsin's Big Ten home opener is also Homecoming and there couldn't be more fitting an opponent than rival Minnesota.
The Paul Bunyan Axe is on the line here, but don't expect the Badgers to lose their six-year grip on it. Wisconsin should roll.
After a surprising 2009 campaign that saw Northwestern finish the year with an 8-5 record and an overtime loss to Auburn in the Outback Bowl, the Wildcats will be rebuilding in 2010.
Although they return eight of their offensive starters, including their entire offensive line, the three missing players couldn't hurt a pass-first offense more.
Gone are quarterback Mike Kafka and his top two receivers, Zeke Markshausen and Andrew Brewer. With the loss of this kind of production, the Wildcat offense may struggle.
Junior Dan Persa is slated as the starting quarterback going into the fall, and though it appears that he will be a good successor to the All-Big Ten Kafka, there's no guarantee.
Jeremy Ebert should step in as Persa's No. 1 option with Arby Fields taking hand-offs once in a while (only 302 yards in 2009).
Defensively, Northwestern lost seven starters and this could be a major reason why the Wildcats may struggle.
Both safeties (Brad Phillips and Brendan Smith), along with starting cornerback Sherrick McManis, are gone, leaving the secondary a huge hole to fill. If the Wildcats can't find adequate replacements, it could be a long year.
However, Northwestern should get a win over Purdue in their Big Ten home opener.
An explosive offense versus an inexperienced defense? Look for Michigan State to put up a 40-spot in this game.
The only way this game would be close was if Illinois brought a decent offense to the table because the Spartans may have some trouble on defense this year. But, regrettably, they don't.
Michigan State: 42
Only a few years ago, teams were afraid to come to the Big House to play Michigan. Not anymore. In the past two years, the home-field advantage the Wolverines built up over decades has been lost.
Maybe it's Rich Rodriguez or maybe it's the team itself, but there isn't any intimidation factor anymore. The only one who will be intimidated in this game is the home team.
Although, by this point, Michigan's desperation for a victory may make it a closer game than expected, Iowa's defense will just be too strong.
Coming off a 5-7 2009 campaign, the Purdue Boilermakers return around half of their starters on both offense and defense and appear to be on the rise in the Big Ten.
However, one hugely important question remains: Will running back Ralph Bolden be ready for the 2010 season?
After tearing his ACL in spring practice, Bolden's future is up in the air, and sophomore running back Al-Terek McBurse seems to poised to step in if Bolden can't go.
As far as the quarterback situation, ex-Miami (FL) starting quarterback Robert Marve seems reared and ready to go. With the return of wide receiver Keith Smith and tight end Kyle Adams, Marve should fit in well at Purdue.
Offensively, if things fall into place, Purdue could be a force to be reckoned with.
The Boilermaker defense is another story.
After allowing almost 30 points a game last year, Purdue needed to make some changes. And they did, though not by choice.
Gone are all four starters in the secondary. And with the Big Ten appearing to be a more pass-heavy league this year than in previous ones, that could spell problems.
However, they got lucky by drawing the Gophers for their Big Ten home opener.
Ah, the first big-time matchup of the Big Ten season. Ohio State vs. Wisconsin under the lights of Camp Randall Stadium.
This will be a very evenly-matched game with Wisconsin trying to run down Buckeye throats while Terrelle Pryor will be attempting to dance around the Badger 'D'.
Ultimately, this game should come down to who makes the least mistakes. Wisconsin wasn't able to do that in 2009 and it resulted in a 31-13 loss to the Bucks. The home-field advantage could prove to be the difference this time around.
Ohio State: 24
Maybe Illinois' only chance for a Big Ten win, their October 23 matchup with Indiana should be a competitive game. And for the approximately 45 people observing it, it may actually be fun to watch.
Indiana's offense could pose some challenges for the Illini 'D', but in the end Illinois fans will be going home happy.
The Big Ten's second huge matchup of the 2010 season again features the Badgers, but this time they aren't in the friendly confines of Camp Randall.
They are in Iowa City, playing in a venue and against a team for which they aren't known for their success.
Although not brilliant by any means, Iowa's offense should be able to put some points on the board against the Badger 'D', but the real question is whether Iowa's defense will be able stop the high-powered Badger scoring machine?
At home, they should be able to slow them down just enough.
With the Spartans possibly coming off a big win against rival Michigan, their matchup against the Wildcats could be an example of the infamous trap game.
Although Ryan Field is by no means an intimidating place to play, Northwestern does seem to thrive when playing in the half-full stadium and no team should take a journey to Evanston lightly.
With both teams having potentially poor defenses, this game could be an offense's dream.
Michigan State: 34
By this point, Minnesota will be desperate for a conference victory. Fortunately, they get a game in front of their home fans. Unfortunately, it's against Penn State.
Although the game could be closer than expected, the Lion defense will be too strong for Adam Weber and company to put up enough points to pull off the upset.
Penn State: 31
Unfortunately for Purdue's sake, after upsetting the Buckeyes last year in West Lafayette, Ohio State will inevitably take this game as payback. Plus, this time, it's in The Horseshoe.
Oh, and Ohio State could be coming off a loss to Wisconsin that ended their hopes of a national title.
This could get ugly.
Ohio State: 38
With Illinois coming in with a little confidence after a possible win over Indiana and Purdue reeling from a possible blowout loss to the Buckeyes, the Fighting Illini are looking like they might turn it around, right?
Purdue's confidence may be slightly shaken, but not enough to lose to the Illini.
Robert Marve and company should overpower the Illinois defense.
With Northwestern coming off a possible upset win against Michigan State and the Hoosiers attempting to bounce back from a possible demoralizing loss to Illinois, this game has "blowout" written all over it.
Except Northwestern really isn't that good. Neither are the Hoosiers for that matter, but at least they're playing at home. Offenses should thrive in this one.
Once again, the question stands: Immovable object versus unstoppable force?
And once again, luckily for the Hawkeyes, that question is answered in Iowa City.
After having just faced Wisconsin's offense, the Spartan offense won't shock the Iowa defense whatsoever. In East Lansing, two weeks earlier, maybe. But not at this point.
After shutting down two high-powered offenses in consecutive weeks, the Hawkeyes will be on a roll.
Michigan State: 14
Let's face it: the first half of Michigan's schedule really doesn't do them any favors. By late October, they've already had to face Michigan State and Iowa and now they get to travel to Happy Valley.
This could very well be the low point of Michigan's 2010 season because Beaver Stadium is a difficult place to play, to say the least.
Penn State's defense is just too good for an inconsistent Michigan offense.
Penn State: 21
Much like the Purdue-Ohio State game last year, this Minneapolis matchup has the potential for an upset.
But don't count on it.
Unlike last year, where Purdue was on the way up, Minnesota is on the way down.
Ohio State should have no trouble in this one.
Ohio State: 41
Finally! Michigan may win a game!
Too bad it comes six weeks too late and against Illinois.
But, a win is a win. And for the Wolverines, at this point in the season, even a victory over the Fighting Illini will be refreshing.
After playing two of the top offenses in the country in two consecutive weeks, Iowa gets a respite when they travel to Bloomington. Somewhat.
Although they don't have the firepower of the Badgers or Spartans, Indiana is still capable of putting up points. If Iowa wants to keep their record intact, they can't afford to take the Hoosiers lightly.
Don't expect them to.
After getting stifled by the Hawkeye defense the week before, expect the Spartan 'O' to be firing on all cylinders for this one.
Unfortunately for the hapless Gophers, they will be the ones standing in the way.
Minnesota may put some points on the board, but not nearly enough.
Michigan State: 42
If this game were in Evanston, it could potentially pose some problems for the Nittany Lions.
Northwestern's offense, if they get on a roll, can light up opposing defenses and so far, Penn State's defense hasn't been truly tested yet.
But, the game is in Happy Valley, not Evanston, and Penn State rarely loses at home.
Penn State: 28
When the Badgers travel to West Lafayette, it's never an easy game. This is no exception.
Both teams will field potent offenses and it may come down to which team has the ball last. However, Wisconsin's defense may be able to hold off the Boilermaker 'O' a few more times than vice versa.
Regardless, points will be flowing freely in this one.
Ah, the battle for last place. Beautiful.
Despite the game taking place in Champaign, the Gophers can't get shut out in Big Ten, can they?
Eh, this is tough...
After not having played at home since their game against Ohio State, Wisconsin will finally be returning to Camp Randall for a scuffle with Indiana.
Although the Indiana air attack may pose some problems for Wisconsin's secondary, it won't be enough to derail the Badger train. Indiana simply doesn't have the personnel to stop both Wisconsin's running and passing games.
In what could turn out to be a great game, Iowa has to travel into Wildcat territory and try to slow down a Northwestern offense that typically plays great at home.
At this point in the season, Iowa can't afford any letdowns, because a loss at this junction could cost them not only the Big Ten title, but a chance at a BCS berth.
That said, Iowa's defense should still be able to hold off Northwestern. But just barely.
Although the game is in West Lafayette, Michigan may be able to come out with a victory in this one.
Their defense may have problems containing Purdue, but at this point in the season, the Wolverine offense should be operating at a respectable pace.
The game could certainly go either way, but Michigan certainly doesn't want to have only one win in the Big Ten for two consecutive years.
In what's certainly developed into the rivalry of the Big Ten East, Ohio State-Penn State should once again be great game in 2010.
Both teams feature defenses that will probably be able to limit each other's offenses and therefore a low-scoring game is a probability.
Terrelle Pryor will be the difference in the game. If he can get out in the open an make plays, Ohio State should come out on top. If Penn State can keep him in the tackle box and force him to throw down the field, the Lions will be able to keep it close and could sneak one out.
But in The Horseshoe, the Buckeyes should come out on top.
Ohio State: 17
Penn State: 10
In this all-Illinois rivalry, virtually nothing is on the line except pride. And the right to claim that your team won a game in the legendary Wrigley Field.
Northwestern could possibly be fighting for a bowl berth at this point in the year though, while Illinois is just thankful that the season is over soon.
Because they actually have a purpose for still playing, the Wildcats should manage a victory here.
Apparently to satisfy Washington D.C. alumni or maybe it was to spice up this already intense rivalry (insert laugh), Penn State and Indiana are playing at the home of the Washington Redskins, FedEx Field.
Although this game could certainly have bowl implications for Penn State, Indiana will really have no reason to be here. Other than the fact that they're receiving $3 million to participate.
Not a bad deal for a meaningless game.
Penn State: 27
In what may turn out to be the Big Ten game of the year, Ohio State travels to Iowa City to take on a potentially undefeated Iowa Hawkeyes squad.
Although at this point, Ohio State may be out of the national title race, they could still salvage a split of the Big Ten title.
Both teams sport great defenses that should effectively neutralize each other. So the key to the game comes down to which offense is able to make plays when they need to.
Ohio State's offense certainly appears to be better suited to make those plays than Iowa's, but the home-field advantage may give the Hawkeyes an extremely slight edge.
Ohio State: 20
For Wisconsin, playing in Ann Arbor has, and always will be a challenge. Whether it's the Big House atmosphere or just good ole fashioned nerves, the Badgers just don't seem to play well against Michigan away from home.
Two years ago, they blew a 19-0 halftime lead against the Wolverines that led to a four-game losing streak. Four years ago, their loss in Ann Arbor was their only blemish on the season.
In 2010, Wisconsin must once again travel to Michigan. However, this year could be the year in which the Badgers finally get that monkey off their back.
On paper, Wisconsin is the much better team and should play that way.
Although the game itself won't mean a great deal, Purdue-Michigan State could turn out to be one for the ages.
Both teams feature high-powered offenses, inconsistent defenses, and nothing to lose.
Michigan State will already be out of the Big Ten race and Purdue will simply be trying to get to a bowl game.
Should be fun.
Michigan State: 45
Always a great rivalry, Purdue-Indiana won't mean much in 2010, but don't try to tell either team that. Both teams, no matter what kind of seasons they're having, always get up for this best of Indiana matchup.
Both Purdue and Indiana can air it out so expect some high-scoring action.
Not only will this be the annual battle for the Floyd of Rosedale, but for Iowa, this trip north to Minneapolis could lock up the Big Ten title and a possible national championship berth.
Minnesota certainly won't want to end their miserable 2010 on a losing note, but they don't really have a choice. Iowa is on a mission.
Possibly the greatest rivalry in all of sports, Michigan-Ohio State has recently been dominated by the Buckeyes.
Don't expect that to change in 2010.
Although Ohio State could potentially be coming into the game with two losses, which is two more than they hoped to have at this point, they will still come out with a fire that is unmatched in sports.
Don't expect the Wolverines to back down though. Despite another bowl-less season, a win over OSU could make Michigan's season.
Too bad Ohio State is much better than Michigan. It's that simple.
Ohio State: 28
Although it's not really known as a great rivalry, PSU-MSU and the battle for the Land Grant Trophy has quietly developed into one.
This year, the two teams will be evenly matched, which should lead to a classic. Michigan State's powerful offense vs. Penn State's stout defense.
Although the game's impact may only reach as far as the Outback Bowl, don't expect either team to notice.
Michigan State: 30
Penn State: 24
With a possible BCS bowl bid on the line, don't expect a letdown from Wisconsin. Especially not on Senior Day. Especially not against a team that upset them last year.
Wisconsin's offense will be rolling at this point and there's nothing Northwestern will be able to do to stop it.
The Wildcats may score a little, but not nearly enough.
So, after all is said and done, who is going to represent the Big Ten in the "granddaddy of them all?"
Well, it should be Iowa. After all, they went undefeated in the Big Ten.
But, assuming they also go undefeated in their non-conference schedule, they could very well be headed to Glendale, Az. for the national championship game.
It's certainly not out of the realm of possibility.
So, who then would be headed to the Rose Bowl?
Well, with only one conference loss, it would be the Wisconsin Badgers. But, because of recent rule change which forces the Rose Bowl to invite a non-BCS conference team if the Big Ten sends their representative to the national championship, they likely won't be heading to Pasadena.
Miami, New Orleans, or Glendale would then be possible bowl destinations.
As for Ohio State, with two conference losses, they would be headed to the Capital One Bowl.
And then on down the line...
2010 Big Ten Conference Final Standings
1. Iowa (8-0)
2. Wisconsin (7-1)
3. Ohio State (6-2)
t-4. Michigan State (5-3)
t-4. Penn State (5-3)
6. Northwestern (4-4)
7. Purdue (3-5)
t-8. Indiana (2-6)
t-8. Michigan (2-6)
t-10. Minnesota (1-7)
t-10. Illinois (1-7)