Iowa was lucky to get out of Bloomington with a victory. The Hawkeyes aren't so fortunate in this round of Big Ten bowl projections.
I'm now projecting Iowa to lose to Ohio State on Nov. 20. I could change my mind based on the results of Nov. 13, but Ohio State's November record under Jim Tressel combined with an Iowa team that lacks the consistency I'd like to see has led to the switch.
The other new element I'm projecting is a Penn State victory against Michigan State on Nov. 27. This isn't a knock on the Spartans as much as it is what I'm seeing from Penn State in recent weeks. The Nittany Lions are growing up, gaining confidence and starting to show their talent. Michigan State didn't handle a raucous environment in Iowa City, and Penn State will have all the intangibles on its side for the regular-season finale at Beaver Stadium.
Right now, I'm projecting both Wisconsin and Ohio State to win out, which would result in a first-place tie at 7-1 in league play. Wisconsin wins the tiebreaker because of its head-to-head win Oct. 16.
Penn State and Michigan also move up in this week's projections, while Illinois drops.
Here they are:
Rose Bowl: Wisconsin vs. BCS team
Fiesta/Sugar/Orange Bowl: Ohio State vs. BCS team
Capital One Bowl: Michigan State vs. SEC team
Outback Bowl: Iowa vs. SEC team
Gator Bowl: Penn State vs. SEC Team
Insight Bowl: Michigan vs. Big 12 team
Texas Bowl: Illinois vs. Big 12 team
Dallas Football Classic: Northwestern vs. Big 12 team
The Big Ten won't fill its slot in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. Minnesota can't get bowl eligible, and neither Purdue nor Indiana is projected to do so.