Last week saw the game of the year playout in the Big Ten East Division with Ohio State going to East Lansing and beating Michigan State. The game was a rematch of last season’s Big Ten Championship Game and it saw the Buckeyes score revenge on the road against the team that beat them in its first conference championship game appearance. This weekend sees another Big Ten Championship Game rematch of sorts, with Nebraska and Wisconsin meeting for the first time since the 2012 Big Ten Championship Game. The Badgers embarrassed Nebraska in its first appearance in the Big Ten Championship Game by a score of 70-31, thus awarding the Badgers their second straight Big Ten championship game victory.
The circumstances of this weekend’s meeting may not be quite the same, but a chance to take the lead in the tight Big Ten West race is on the line. Nebraska, at 8-1, is looking to make a late push in the College Football Playoff one-loss crowd while Wisconsin is hoping to make a third trip to Indianapolis to play for the Big Ten championship. Both teams will bring Heisman Trophy candidate running backs to the field, although the status of Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah is something to keep a close eye on. Whatever the case after injuring his knee a couple of weeks ago, Abdullah and Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon figure to be the stars of the show on Saturday in Lincoln.
On this week’s podcast I wanted to preview this game in particular, so I brought on two familiar guests with some good knowledge about the Badgers and Cornhuskers. Andy Coppens of Talking 10 (Twitter, Facebook) and Madtown Badgers (Twitter, Facebook, Fancred) and Brandon Cavanaugh of Husker Corner (Twitter, Facebook) each joined me for a brief chat about the game and took some time explaining how Wisconsin and Nebraska have arrived at this point in the season. Ohio State may still be the favorite in the Big Ten, but there is no question the winner of this game is the favorite to clash with the Buckeyes in the Big Ten Championship Game. Still, nobody is neglecting the success Minnesota is having this season and the Gophers are expected to play a role in how this Big Ten West is won.
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