- Brian Bennett, ESPN Staff Writer
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With no teams in the national title hunt, the Big Ten doesn't have to get too nervous or excited about the BCS standings anymore. But they still could come into play before the season is over.
A week after no Big Ten teams cracked the top 10, Nebraska rectified that by checking in at No. 10. But then you have to go all the way down to No. 15 before the league shows up again, with a run of teams from 15-17: Michigan, Penn State and Michigan State, in that order.
Nebraska is all over the map with the computers, ranking as high as No. 8 and as low as No. 18. Four of the six computer rankings have the Huskers at No. 13 or lower. That's still better than Wisconsin, which is unranked in five of the six computer rankings, and only No. 20 in the other.
What does it mean for the conference? Probably not too much. But BCS standings are the No. 5 division tiebreaker, should it come to that. As tightly bunched as both division races are right now, that could happen.
And the other potential impact is on the Big Ten's quest for another at-large bid to the BCS. Remember that a team has to finish in the top 14 of the BCS standings to be eligible for an at-large spot. Right now, only Nebraska would qualify. But if a team is going to get in position for an at-large spot by going, say, 10-2, that means it will win a few more big games and would likely climb into the top 14. So it shouldn't be too much of a problem if a Big Ten team is deserving of that consideration.
Big Ten in the BCS standings
No. 10: Nebraska
No. 15: Michigan
No. 16: Penn State
No. 17: Michigan State
No. 20: Wisconsin
19hDan Murphy and Mitch Sherman