Rutgers-centric Big Ten Football Power Rankings Week 12, 2019

Matt Alaimo, Daevon Robinson, Isaih Pacheco, Rutgers Scarlet Knights. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
Matt Alaimo, Daevon Robinson, Isaih Pacheco, Rutgers Scarlet Knights. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images) /
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Johnny Langan, Rutgers Scarlet Knights. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images) /

This week Empire Writes Back continues our Big Ten Football Power Rankings (with a Rutgers twist). A big upset last week rocked the rankings.

Welcome to the next edition of our Big Ten Power Rankings. Now through the end of November, we will do this on a weekly basis. The conference finished Week 12 of the 2019 season with six Top 25 teams, which includes the number two team in the country. As of now, the Big Ten will have something to say about who gets into the College Football Playoff in January.

11 of 14 conference teams were in action last week. There is a another big shakeup among the teams trying to chase down Ohio State as the Big Ten’s best. One team’s drop is another team’s gain. As of now, eight teams have qualified for bowl games, and three more need a pair of victories to claim a spot.

14. Northwestern Wildcats, (2-8 overall, 0-7 Big 10)

Last Week: A win in Evanston, IL. Northwestern blew out 1-9 UMass by a score of 45-6.

This Week vs No. 11 Minnesota: After a one week reprieve, it’s back to normal for the Wildcats. Another big loss is looming.

13. Rutgers Scarlet Knights, (2-8, 0-7)

Last Week: It wasn’t the massacre most people were expecting. Rutgers still got knocked around 56-21, but they did have some fight in them. The Scarlet Knights kept the turnover margin even. They also gained 221 yards of offense. Most of Ohio State’s opponents haven’t fared as well as RU did against the second ranked team in the nation.

Rutgers quarterback Johnny Langan had a decent day considering who he was playing against. The freshman signal-caller was 12-of-26 passing for 121 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Langan also had 10 runs for 42 yards and a score. Isaih Pacheco rushed 16 times for 50 yards, including a 26-yard TD run. The end zone celebration afterward left something to be desired, but it’s a work in progress.

Christian Izien and Tyshon Fogg led Rutgers with 11 tackles. Hats off to head coach Nunzio Campanile for keeping his team in the fight.

This Week vs. Michigan State: Rutgers will have their hands full this week. Its a desperate Spartans team that comes to New Jersey. If the Knights can keep it close, MSU hasn’t done the best job of closing out games in 2019.