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Big News From the Big Ten: Week 5 of College Football

Here's everything you need to know across the Big Ten this week.
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On Sept. 27, the Big Ten Conference sent out the fifth press release of the 2021 NCAA College Football Season. Here are the top storylines from the release.

Big Ten Matchups Ahead

The Big Ten season is ready to ramp up, as six of the eight scheduled games will feature two Big Ten teams this upcoming week. Michigan State University and the University of Illinois, who play Western Kentucky University and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte respectively, are the only teams who are not playing a conference game.

The University of Iowa travels to College Park to face the University of Maryland to kick things off on Friday night. On Saturday, the University of Minnesota travels to Purdue University, the University of Wisconsin hosts the University of Michigan, Ohio State University heads east to face Rutgers University, Northwestern University heads to Lincoln to face the University of Nebraska and finally State College is the setting for the game between the Indiana University and Penn State University.

Undefeated Teams 

Only five undefeated teams remain within the conference, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State and Penn State. All four teams are 4–0 and the number of teams will at least drop to four after Iowa and Maryland play each other this weekend.

Top 25 Rankings

Five Big Ten teams finished in the Top 25 polls this week. The teams were Penn State at No. 4, Iowa at No. 5, No. 11 Ohio State, No. 14 Michigan and No. 17 Michigan State. Maryland, Rutgers and Wisconsin received votes but did not place.

Prolific Wolverines

Michigan continues to dominate opponents as the team currently has the fourth best scoring defense in the country and the 16th best scoring offense. The Wolverines have also not turned the ball over once this season.

Hawkeyes Continue to Roll

Iowa improved to 4–0 after a 24–14 victory over Colorado State University. This was the 10th straight victory for the Hawkeyes, a streak that dates back to 2020, and the team possesses the third ranked scoring defense in the country.

Ohio State: Offensive Juggernaut

The Buckeyes rank No. 2 in the country in total offense and No. 7 in scoring offense. Freshman running back TreVeyon Henderson also holds the highest single game rushing total this season after his 277-yard performance against Tulsa in week three.

Running Back Success

Four Big Ten running backs are in the top 10 in the country for yards per game. These tailbacks are Michigan State's Kenneth Walker III, who is No. 1, No.8 Evan Hull from Northwestern, No. 9 Blake Corum from Michigan and Minnesota's Trey Potts, who is No. 10.

Tough Defense

There are five Big Ten defense's that are within the top 10 in the country for scoring defense. Iowa leads the pack at No. 3, with Michigan trailing shortly behind at No. 4. Rutgers comes in at No. 7 while Purdue and Maryland are tied at No. 8.

Special Team Excellence

Jayden Reed, Michigan State redshirt junior wide receiver, won Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance against Nebraska. Reed had a 62-yard punt return touchdown in addition to a 41-yard return that set up a field goal. He also scored a touchdown in the game at receiver.

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Offensive Players of the Week

Sean Clifford, Penn State redshirt senior quarterback, won Big Ten co-Offensive Player of the week for his performance against Villanova University. Clifford became the second quarterback in Nittany Lions history to toss over 400 yards in a game, and senior wide received Jahan Dotson caught a touchdown pass in his fifth consecutive game. Evan Hull from the Wildcats was the other co-Offensive Player of the week.

Terrapins on a Hot Streak

Maryland is 4–0 for the first time since 2015. The Terrapins defeated Kent State 37–16 off of a 384-yard, three touchdown performance from junior quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa. The quarterback is eighth in the country in passing yards per game and has the most yards through four games of any Terrapin signal caller since 1993. Senior wide receiver Dontay Demus Jr. notched his seventh career 100-yard game in the victory, tying for second in program history in 100-yard performances.

Repeat Information

All of the information below has appeared in past press releases. It will be summarized, but for more on this visit the older stories.

The Cotton and Orange Bowls will serve as the semi-final games in the CFP. 120 players in the Big Ten this season were All-Big Ten honorees in 2020.


Big News From the Big Ten: Week 4 of College Football

Big Ten Breakdown: A Complete Recap of Week 4 Across the Big Ten

Evan Hull Named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week

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