Wisconsin improved to 2-1 in the Big Ten with a tight 18-14 decision over Ohio State on Saturday in Madison, WI.
With UW, OSU, and Indiana playing each other twice in the Big Ten, these games are all about who can get an edge come playoff time. For the Badgers, captain and hooker Ben Lehremann led from the front in wet conditions.
"Our tight five won the game for us," Wisconsin head coach Nic Tyson said. "We had the upper hand in all the set pieces. The conditions were wet and muddy so the backs weren't as effective as usual."
Still, the Badgers managed to pull out the victory.
Meanwhile, the team of the moment, Michigan State, pulled off another surprise result this weekend. It wasn't so much that the Spartans defeated rival Michigan, but that they shut the Wolverines out 26-0.
MSU scored within the first five minutes through center Gavin Spisak, and then the other center, Jake Richmond, took one in midway through the first period. Michigan hung tough and it wasn't until 30 minutes later that Michigan State scored again, this time wing Samy Shelbaya doing the honors. Richmond got the bonus point try with seven minutes to play.
Once again Michigan State's fitness and attention to defense showed, and the Spartans, with an easier schedule than the top three, are 3-0. Michigan State has Wisconsin later this month.
Illinois bounced back nicely from last week's loss to MSU to beat Purdue 34-11. Indiana played a non-conference game against University of Notre Dame and got tries from Marcelo Gutierrez, Dacoda Worth, Tyler Sousley, Takara Suzuki, Jake Ney, Keegan Peters, and Gabe Anastasio to win 50-17. Notre Dame didn't give up and in fact it was 14-12 just before halftime, when Sousley scored.
So in the Big Ten standings Indiana leads with a 3-0 record, but Michigan State is also undefeated. Wisconsin and Illinois are both 2-1.
However, the teams other than Ohio State, Wisconsin, and Indiana have to beat one of those top three to get a shot at the championship game.