Final 2015 Big Ten Power Rankings

The Big Ten season is over, with Michigan State capturing the Big Ten Championship in thrilling fashion over Iowa. We're here to rank each team with our final Big Ten Power Rankings.

14. Purdue Boilermakers (2-10, 1-7)

Purdue has won just six games in three years. The team's recruiting strategy is just one of the myriad of things that need a major rethink.

13. Maryland Terrapins (3-9, 1-7)

Maryland snapped a seven-game losing streak with a season-closing win over Rutgers, notching their first and only Big Ten win this season. We'll see what a new head coach whips up in the first true year of the post-Randy Edsall era.

12. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (4-8, 1-7)

Goodbye, Kyle Flood. Rutgers' loss to a bad Maryland team was the final nail in his coaching coffin. This marks just the second losing season for the program in 11 years.

11. Illinois Fighting Illini (5-7, 2-6)

Bill Cubit remains the program's coach, but this program isn't going anywhere unless they find a running game.

10. Minnesota Golden Gophers (5-7, 2-6)

Minnesota finished 2-4 in its final six games and looked deflated after the sudden retirement of coach Jerry Kill. Let's see if an offseason of a work puts some wind in their sails.

9. Nebraska Cornhuskers (5-7, 3-5)

Kudos to Nebraska for buckling down in back-to-back wins over Michigan State and Rutgers. The loss to Iowa may not knock the hide-and-go-seek Huskers out of bowl contention after all, with two spots requiring 5-7 teams this year. Our question is -- would you accept an invitation after this year's disappointment.

8. Indiana Hoosiers (6-6, 2-6)

QB Nate Sudfeld and RB Jordan Howard deserved this. Indiana closed the Big Ten schedule with back-to-back wins to make a bowl for the first time since 2007. This offense is going to be fun to watch in the postseason

7. Penn State Nittany Lions (7-5, 4-4)

Penn State is an easy-to-peg squad. They beat the teams they're supposed to and lose to the ones they're not, without variance. The definition of a lower-to-mid tier bowl team.

6. Wisconsin Badgers (9-3, 6-2)

Wisconsin finished the regular season on a high note with a win over Minnesota, but they still didn't beat a Big Ten team with a winning record this year. Close losses to Iowa and Northwestern provide some semblance of a moral victory, but they were still the difference between a New Year's Six bid and middle-tier bowl.

5. Northwestern Wildcats (10-2, 6-2)

Congrats to the Wildcats. Knock them all you want for blowout losses to Iowa and Michigan, but this is still just the fourth time in program history that they've hit the double-digit win plateau. They had just ten wins over the past two seasons combined.

4. Michigan Wolverines (9-3, 6-2)

We've seen a lot of reactionary "writing off" of Michigan after their blowout loss to Ohio State, but they still had a fantastic season in Jim Harbaugh's firs year, which puts them ahead of schedule. A win in their bowl will secure just the second double-digit win season in nine tries for the Wolverines.

3. Ohio State Buckeyes (11-1, 7-1)

The defending champs may be a victim of circumstance when it comes to the College Football Playoff, but a loss to Michigan State means they didn't deserve a spot. The CFP Committee doubled down on that by putting both Stanford and Iowa ahead of the Buckeyes in the final rankings. 

2. Iowa Hawkeyes (12-1, 8-1)

Iowa was 12-0 for the first time in program history, but came up just short against MSU. It's still an incredible season for the Hawkeyes and they should be proud. A Rose Bowl berth is a well-deserved one for Iowa.

1. Michigan State Spartans (12-1, 8-1)

The Spartans represent the Big Ten's hopes for a College Football Playoff repeat. It wasn't always pretty, but the Spartans earned their spot in the playoff. Now, it's time to see how they play against Alabama. 

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Related Topics: Michigan State Spartans Football News, Iowa Hawkeyes Football News, Ohio State Buckeyes Football News, Michigan Wolverines Football News, Big Ten Football Power Rankings