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Big Ten places three in final AP top 15

1/11/2011

The final Associated Press Top 25 poll is out, and the Big Ten placed three teams among the top 15.

Sugar Bowl champ Ohio State leads off the Big Ten contingent at No. 5, marking the Buckeyes' seventh top 5 finish in Jim Tressel's 10 years as coach. Rose Bowl participant Wisconsin dropped two spots to No. 7, while Michigan State finishes the season at No. 14.

I'm a little surprised the Spartans didn't pay a heavier price for their blowout loss in the Capital One Bowl, but this ranking could bode well for Mark Dantonio's squad entering the 2011 campaign. Michigan State faced an uphill climb this fall after entering the season unranked and would benefit from being in the top 10-15 this summer.

Although the Big Ten had two teams in the AP's final top 10 for the seventh time in the past nine seasons, the league's lack of depth showed with only three teams in the final rankings. Iowa finished second among teams also receiving votes.