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Big Ten football power rankings, 8.26.14
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Big Ten football power rankings, 8.26.14

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WEST DIVISION

1. Nebraska (0-0)

A reporter from Palm Beach, Florida, asked Bo Pelini if he would have any thoughts of revenge Saturday coaching against Florida Atlantic, the school that last year fired his brother, Carl Pelini. “No,” Bo said flatly. “I don’t coach for that.”

This week: Florida Atlantic, Sat., 2:30 p.m. (BTN)

2. Wisconsin (0-0)

How will the Badgers’ receiving corps deal with the loss of star Jared Abbrederis? “We're going to be receiver-by-committee,” coach Gary Andersen said. “We're not going to be receiver-by-Jared-Abbrederis.”

This week: vs. LSU, Sat., 8 p.m. (ESPN)

3. Iowa (0-0)

Kirk Ferentz isn't shedding much light on how he’ll utilize his linebackers, where the Hawkeyes must replace every starter. “I’m not sure what we’ll do right now,” Ferentz said, “but it's probably fair to say they’ll all play.”

This week: Northern Iowa, Sat., 11 a.m. (BTN)

4. Minnesota (0-0)

Jerry Kill said senior running back David Cobb, who led the Gophers with 1,202 rushing yards last season, is much improved. “He’s not the same back he was at this time a year ago. Not even close,” Kill said. “He’s just different.”

This week: Eastern Illinois, Thurs., 6 p.m. (BTN)

5. Northwestern (0-0)

The Wildcats have won nine straight season openers, including the last four on the road against Power 5 Conference opponents: at Vanderbilt, at Boston College, at Syracuse, at California.

This week: California, Sat., 2:30 p.m. (ABC/ESPN2)

6. Illinois (0-0)

Third-year coach Tim Beckman said this Illinois team is “as close-knit a group as I've ever been around,” and that Oklahoma State transfer Wes Lunt has an “air of confidence about him” heading into his first start at quarterback with Illini.

This week: Youngstown State, Sat., 11 a.m. (BTN)

7. Purdue (0-0)

How versatile is Akeem Hunt? Coach Darrell Hazell said Hunt will be a “100-play guy,” contributing in the backfield, in the slot and on kickoff returns. Hunt is second on the school all-time charts with 1,666 kickoff return yards.

This week: Western Michigan, Sat., 11 a.m. (BTN)

EAST DIVISION

1. Michigan State (0-0)

One of the vacant starting positions on the defensive line will be filled by true freshman Malik McDowell, coach Mark Dantonio said. “He’s had a very good fall camp for a freshman,” Dantonio said.

This week: Jacksonville State, Fri., 6:30 p.m. (BTN)

2. Ohio State (0-0)

Senior quarterback Braxton Miller shared pictures on social media of himself and Dr. James Andrews, who on Tuesday repaired Miller’s torn labrum. “So happy this man said everything went well!" Miller said on Instagram.

This week: vs. Navy, Sat., 11 a.m. (CBS Sports Network)

3. Michigan (0-0)

Freshman left tackle Mason Cole has been somewhat invisible in fall camp, which is a good thing. “The one thing with Mason is that you don't notice him,” Michigan coach Brady Hoke said, “so he's not making those mistakes.”

This week: Appalachian State, Sat., 11 a.m. (ESPN2)

4. Indiana (0-0)

Kevin Wilson said quarterback Nate Sudfeld, from a statistical standpoint, can be one of the better quarterbacks in the Big Ten. Now, what about that defense? “We need to be a lot better,” Wilson said.

This week: Indiana State, Sat., 11 a.m. (ESPNEWS)

5. Penn State (0-0)

While he realizes word is out on social media that Penn State will ditch tradition and now put names on the back of its uniforms, first-year coach James Franklin wasn't interested in discussing the topic.

This week: vs. Central Florida, Sat., 8:30 a.m. (ESPN2)

6. Maryland (0-0)

Attend a football game at new Big Ten member Maryland, and you can get a “Chessie,” a gigantic soft pretzel baked with back fin crab dip and melted cheese. It’s a new menu item, and it serves four.

This week: James Madison, Sat., 2:30 p.m. (BTN)

7. Rutgers (0-0)

Rutgers will travel more than 2,800 miles to play Washington State, but not for a true road contest. The game’s in Seattle. “I don’t know that I could consider a West Coast trip a neutral-site game,” Rutgers coach Kyle Flood said.

This week: vs. Washington State, Fri., 9 p.m. (Fox Sports 1)

​Reach the writer at 402-473-7436 or brosenthal@journalstar.com. On Twitter @HuskerExtraBR.

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