A look back at the Week 13 picks

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

A 5-1 record on rivalry week isn't too shabby, though most of the score predictions were off and the one loss was particularly bad, as Iowa thumped Minnesota, 55-0. Many Hawkeyes fans warned me about picking against their team, and I was definitely eating crow in my hotel room Saturday night in Columbus.

Iowa is hot right now, though I can't remember a fan base coming out of the woodwork as much as Hawkeye Nation right now. Where were all you guys in early October? Anyway, happy to have you on board.

It's time to review the picks.


  • My pick: Ohio State 31, Michigan 14

  • Game result: Ohio State 42, Michigan 7

  • 20-20 hindsight: As forecasted, Michigan stayed close for a half, but an inability to stop big plays, on the ground and through the air, doomed the Wolverines. The Wolverines' defense played well in stretches, but Ohio State's Chris "Beanie" Wells and a passing game that featured Brian Hartline (2 TDs) proved to be too much as the Buckeyes rolled to their record fifth straight victory.


  • My pick: Purdue 28, Indiana 27

  • Game result: Purdue 62, Indiana 10

  • 20-20 hindsight: Where did that come from? Purdue head coach Joe Tiller probably wondered the same thing as his offense showed up big time in his final game on the sideline. I thought Indiana would play a lot harder than this in the season finale, but the Hoosiers clearly had major chemistry issues to go along with injury problems the entire year. Boilers quarterback Curtis Painter was fabulous on Senior Day.


  • My pick: Penn State 30, Michigan State 23

  • Game result: Penn State 49, Michigan State 18

  • 20-20 hindsight: The start was the key entering the game, and Penn State took control right away with big plays, something it struggled to do in recent weeks. Michigan State simply isn't talented enough to keep pace with an elite team playing at or near its peak. Lions quarterback Daryll Clark regained his swagger in a big way.


  • My pick: Wisconsin 40, Cal Poly 27

  • Game result: Wisconsin 36, Cal Poly 35 (OT)

  • 20-20 hindsight: All it took was a look at Cal Poly's season statistics to see this would be a tough game for the Badgers. And if Cal Poly could convert an extra-point attempt -- the Mustangs missed three -- it would have pulled off the upset in Madison. Given new life, Wisconsin prevailed behind running backs John Clay and P.J. Hill, who combined for 166 rushing yards and four touchdowns.


  • My pick: Northwestern 28, Illinois 24

  • Game result: Northwestern 27, Illinois 10

  • 20-20 hindsight: I expected a better effort from the Illini, who had a possible bowl berth at stake. But by Nov. 22, a team has defined itself, and Illinois was a talented but dysfunctional squad plagued by turnovers on offense, inconsistent play on defense and dreadful special teams. Northwestern turned in its best performance of the season and outclassed Illinois on Senior Day.


  • My pick: Minnesota 24, Iowa 21

  • Game result: Iowa 55, Minnesota 0

  • 20-20 hindsight: The Hawkeyes brought home the bacon in a big way, stomping all over the Gophers in the final game at the Metrodome. I figured Shonn Greene would have a big day, but quarterback Ricky Stanzi, wideout Derrell Johnson-Koulianos and the defense also sizzled. Minnesota looked emotionally defeated as soon as it stepped on the field. The Gophers remain a young team still learning how to deal with success.

Byes: None

Week 13 record: 5-1

Regular-season record: 71-17 (80.7 percent)