<
>

Big Ten West teams poised to score big upsets

You heard it here first, Purdue is taking down Louisville in Week 1. Just kidding, but part of the excitement of the college football season is the potential for upsets. Unless your team is the one doing the losing, upsets are always fun.

The Big Ten West division has the potential to see a few underdogs come out on top throughout this coming season to add to that fun, so here are a look at a few of those games that have potential for an upset.

Iowa at Northwestern, Oct. 21: This is building up to be a great season for Northwestern with star running back Justin Jackson and starting quarterback Clayton Thorson returning on offense. Almost the entire defense is back, which should equate to a successful season for coach Pat Fitzgerald and his staff. Iowa, however, always seems to sneak in a few wins that it shouldn't and this could be that game for the Hawkeyes in 2017. Northwestern has to play at Wisconsin, then home against Penn State and then at Maryland in the three weeks before its matchup against Iowa. That could be a tough stretch, especially because Iowa will be coming off of a bye week before playing the Wildcats.

Nebraska at Minnesota, Nov. 11: Nebraska has a chance at a really good season if the Huskers can get past Oregon early and then the gauntlet of Wisconsin and Ohio State in back-to-back weeks. Nebraska gets a week off after facing the Buckeyes, then travels to Purdue and has Northwestern at home the following week. Coming off of that run of tough competition, then traveling to Minnesota, with a game against Penn State looming the following week, could give the Gophers a chance to take this game. Add in new coach P.J. Fleck, who will likely have a better grasp for his team by this point in the season, and this could be a tough test for Nebraska.

Nebraska at Penn State, Nov. 18: Chances are Penn State will take this game, but these two haven't played each other since 2013 when both teams were led by different coaches. There is unfamiliarity between the programs and this is the second to last game of the season for both sides. Nebraska and Penn State are hoping to be in position to make a run at the Big Ten championship game, so this could be a wild game late in the season. The Huskers have been involved with a few close, exciting games under coach Mike Riley and it seems as though this game has that potential.