21. Michigan (5-2) Last Game: W 12-10 vs Michigan State; Next Game: @ Nebraska
Previous Rank: 21
The Wolverines had plenty of reasons to celebrate, despite the admittedly ugly win over rival Michigan State last week. They won back the Paul Bunyan trophy for the first time since 2007 and also notched their 900th win as a program, the most in major college football history. Four field goals, three from Brendan Gibbons, were all the Wolverines could muster, but also all that they needed. The final one came with just five seconds remaining to lift the Wolverines to victory. The defense held Le’Veon Bell in check and Denard Robinson was able to throw for 163 yards and rush for 96 more to lead the offense. A trip to Nebraska is huge this week, with the Big Ten Legends division lead on the line.
22. Wisconsin (6-2) Last Game: W 38-13 vs Minnesota; Next Game: vs Michigan State
Previous Rank: 22
The Badgers ran wild all over Minnesota, getting 337 yards on the ground in route to the victory. James White ran for 175 yards and three scores and Montee Ball added 166 yards and two scores. Minnesota got good pressure on Joel Stave all day but the Badger quarterback played mistake-free and let his dynamic running attack do work. It was the first time this season that a team from the FBS had two 150-yard rushers in the same game and the first time since Oregon did it last January in the Rose Bowl, against Wisconsin. Struggling Michigan State will attempt to slow down the Badgers this week.
23. Ohio (7-0) Last Game: W 34-28 vs Akron October 13th; Next Game: @ Miami (OH)
Previous Rank: 23
Tyler Tettleton threw for two touchdowns and caught another on a trick play to lead Ohio past Akron. The Bobcats held off a late comeback attempt as Akron scored twice in the 4th quarter to cut the lead to six but were unable to get the ball back and score the upset. Tettleton had just 150 yards passing but it was his 39-yard reception for a touchdown on Ohio’s opening possession that was the highlight of the game. The Bobcats are hoping to become the first team from the MAC to crack the BCS but will need some help, and to stay perfect.
24. West Virginia (5-2) Last Game: L 55-14 vs Kansas State; Next Game: vs TCU November 3rd
Previous Rank: 24
For the second week in a row, reeling West Virginia was embarrassed as their defense once again allowed a team to run wild. Geno Smith, the Heisman favorite by a huge margin just two weeks ago, struggled again to just 143 yards passing with one touchdown and two interceptions. But it was the defense that really had a hard time, allowing 479 yards and new Heisman front-runner Collin Klein’s seven total touchdowns. The score was 24-0 before Tavon Austin returned a kickoff 100 yards for the only 1st half touchdown for the Mountaineers. Smith added a late touchdown pass to Austin as well but it was not enough as the Wildcats cruised. Another shootout on the road against TCU could be awaiting the Mountaineers this week.
25. Louisiana Tech (6-1) Last Game: W 70-28 vs Idaho; Next Game: @ New Mexico State
Previous Rank: 25
The Bulldogs rolled their way to 839 yards of total offense and Kenneth Dixon embarrassed the Vandals with six touchdowns and 232 yards on the ground. The big win may have also proved to be the catalyst to force a coaching change at Idaho as Robb Akey was let go Sunday afternoon. Colby Cameron threw for 400 yards on 29-37 passing and added two touchdowns. The shootout included seven 1st quarter touchdowns as Louisiana Tech grabbed a 35-14 lead. Had the Bulldogs kept up the pressure, they may have broken 100 points but they took their foot off the gas in the 3rd quarter. They travel to Las Cruces to face New Mexico State this week.