We're six weeks into the season, so the Big Ten individual awards are starting to come into a little bit of focus now.
We've been tracking them all season, even when it was ridiculously early to be doing so. Joining our weekly look at the offensive and defensive player of the year races this week is a check on who would be voted coach of the year in the Big Ten if balloting happened today.
Away we go ...
Graham-George Offensive Player of the Year
1. Nebraska RB Ameer Abdullah (six first-place votes): Abdullah had 18 straight games with at least 100 yards from scrimmage until he ran into Michigan State's defense. He was held to just 45 yards on 24 carries, though he did score twice. His body of work, though, keeps him in the top spot for now.
2. Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon: The Badgers star added another 259 rushing yards in the loss at Northwestern and now leads the FBS in rushing yards per game. Despite his curious absence in the second-half against LSU and the virtual no-show versus Western Illinois, he's still on pace for more than 2,200 yards.
3. Indiana RB Tevin Coleman: He just kept buzzing along, running for 150 yards and a score against North Texas. Coleman is averaging 8 yards per carry.
T-4: Michigan State WR Tony Lippett: The Spartans' big-play wideout makes his first appearance in the top 5 after another great game against Nebraska. Lippett has scored eight touchdowns (seven receiving, one rushing) and is averaging 21 yards per catch
T-4: Michigan State QB Connor Cook: He completed only 11-of-29 passes vs. the Huskers but still is the engine for the Spartans' offense. He's also 10-0 as a starter in Big Ten games, which is nice.
Nagurski-Woodson Defensive Player of the Year
1. Ohio State DE Joey Bosa (six first-place votes): The pass-rushing fiend is tied for second in the league with seven tackles for loss and tied for first with three forced fumbles.
2. Nebraska DE Randy Gregory: He had an interception early against Michigan State and is second in the Big Ten with 4.5 sacks despite missing most of two games.
3. Penn State DT Anthony Zettel: He and the Nittany Lions were off last week; he'll try to build on a strong first month this weekend at Michigan and its shaky offensive line.
4. Michigan State DE Marcus Rush: Always known as the "other" Spartans defensive end, Rush is asserting himself as a senior. His numbers are very similar to Bosa's and he was terrific against Nebraska.
5. Minnesota LB Damien Wilson: He's fourth in the league at 10.2 tackles per game while providing an anchor for the Gophers' strong defense
Dave McClain / Hayes–Schembechler Coach of the Year
1. Kyle Flood, Rutgers (four first-place votes): Most preseason predictions called for a losing season for Rutgers this year. The Scarlet Knights are 5-1.
2. Jerry Kill, Minnesota (one first-place vote): The Gophers' lone loss -- to TCU -- looks better in hindsight, and Kill has this team positioned to make a run at the West Division title.
3. Mark Dantonio, Michigan State (one first-place vote): Last year's winner of this award once again has the Spartans looking like the best team in the league. They've won 11 straight Big Ten games, dating to the end of 2012.
Also receiving votes: Penn State's James Franklin; Northwestern's Pat Fitzgerald