1. Timing. Who are the big winners and losers in the 2020 Big Ten schedule?
It’s not just about who you play, it’s sometimes about when you play certain teams.
When do you catch a break with the week off, and when are you getting a dangerous game at the end of a run of road games? Here are the teams with the most and least favorable conference stretches.
After going to Minnesota on October 17th, the Wolverines get Purdue, a week off, Maryland, at Rutgers, Indiana. That’s how you get healthy for the trip to Ohio State. | Ohio State schedule
Loser: Penn State
The Nittany Lions go to Michigan on October 3rd, get a week off, and then face Iowa. After that it’s at Indiana and at Nebraska for three road games in four dates. | Penn State schedule
Winner: Michigan State
Sort of. It has to play Michigan and Ohio State anyway, so the Spartans might as well get them out of the way and at home. They play three home games in four weeks starting with the Wolverines on October 10th, then Ohio State, at Indiana, Minnesota. | Michigan State schedule
Right after dealing with Michigan State, the Hawkeyes have three road games in four dates, starting at Ohio State on October 10th, and then at Penn State, Northwestern, a week off, at Illinois.
There’s an even worse way to look at this – the Ohio State and Penn State games come at the end of a four-week run that starts with at Minnesota, and then Michigan State. | Iowa schedule
The Scarlet Knights might not catch a break when it comes to playing teams after off-weeks, but starting at October 17th against Indiana, there’s a run of three home games in four – Indiana, Nebraska, at Maryland, a week off, and Michigan. | Rutgers schedule
It’s a make-or-break second half stretch of three road games in four weeks. At Illinois on October 17 is followed up by at Michigan, Northwestern, at Minnesota. And right after that? Wisconsin, Iowa, at Indiana. Good luck. | Purdue schedule
It might not be easy, but after getting a week off, the Hoosiers get three home games in four weeks starting against Maryland on October 10th, then at Rutgers, Michigan State, then Penn State. | Indiana schedule
Welcome to payback for starting out the season with four straight home games and five in the first six. There’s a week off on October 17th, and then it’s a big bowl of yuck.
At Rutgers, at Ohio State, Penn State, at Iowa, at Wisconsin. Four road games in five weeks, and then finishing up against Minnesota. | Nebraska schedule
Big Ten Football Schedules, Analysis, Toughest Games
East Indiana | Maryland | Michigan
Michigan State | Ohio State | Penn State | Rutgers
West Illinois | Iowa | Minnesota | Nebraska
Northwestern | Purdue | Wisconsin