It's the second weekend of October, and in the Big Ten's East Division, three teams are tied for the lead at 2-0. In the West, there's a six-way tie for first at 1-1. Sounds about right. It'll take a while to sort this out.
Three with intrigue
Purdue at Maryland, 11 a.m., BTN
Boilermakers and Terrapins have been in the same conference since 2014 but have met only twice in that time. Maryland won 50-7 at home in 2016. Purdue won 40-14 at home in 2019. Let's split the difference. Maryland 32, Purdue 24.
Wisconsin at Northwestern, 2:30 p.m., BTN
The Badgers made big news Sunday by firing Paul Chryst and promoting defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard to interim head coach. The Wildcats will keep it close, but Leonhard emerges triumphant. Wisconsin 23, Northwestern 16.
Iowa at Illinois, 6:30 p.m., BTN
Through five games, the Hawkeyes have six offensive TDs (three against Nevada), five field goals (two against Nevada), two defensive TDs and two safeties. As father-son working combos go, Kirk Ferentz is getting as much help from offensive coordinator Brian as Sheriff Buford T. Justice did from Junior. Illinois 20, Iowa 7.
And the rest
No. 4 Michigan at Indiana, 11 a.m., Ch. 9
Since Indiana last won the Big Ten title in 1967 (in a tie with the Gophers and Purdue), the Hoosiers are 2-40 against Michigan, the last win coming in the COVID-19 season of 2020. Wolverines roll. Michigan 42, Indiana 20.
No. 3 Ohio State at Michigan State, 3 p.m., Ch. 5
The Spartans have given up 100 points during a three-game skid. Buckeyes QB C.J. Stroud will expose that shaky pass defense. Ohio State 45, Michigan State 14.
Nebraska at Rutgers, 6 p.m. Friday, BTN
Huskers interim coach Mickey Joseph goes for win No. 2, while the Scarlet Knights try to end a two-game skid. QB Casey Thompson and Nebraska prevail. Nebraska 27, Rutgers 23.