The Big Ten preseason media poll from Cleveland.com crowned the Ohio State Buckeyes as the runaway favorite to win the conference in 2021.
Ohio State has won the Big Ten Championship four years in a row. Media in the conference expect them to make it five in 2021.
The Buckeyes were the overwhelming pick to win both the Big Ten East and the conference title game in the annual cleveland.com Preseason Big Ten Poll.
34 media members took part, with all but one voting Ohio State atop the conference.
Here are the full standings.
Big Ten predicted order of finish
Big Ten West:
1. Wisconsin (29 first-place votes) 233 points
2. Iowa (5) 202
3. Northwestern 160
4. Minnesota 146
5. Nebraska 91.5
6. Purdue 72.5
7. Illinois 47
Big Ten East:
1. Ohio State (34 first-place votes) 238
2. Penn State 192
3. Indiana 169
4. Michigan 144
5. Maryland 79
6. Rutgers 77.5
7. Michigan State 52.5
Big Ten Championship Game:
- Ohio State over Wisconsin (28)
- Ohio State over Iowa (5)
- Wisconsin over Ohio State (1)
While the East looks like a straightforward division with Ohio State clearly on top. In the West, it’s much more uncertain. While Wisconsin took the majority of votes, Iowa is expected to challenge them closely.
Voters don’t have much faith in Illinois or Michigan State, that’s for sure.
Ohio State will have to figure out how to move forward without quarterback Justin Fields, but the Buckeyes have recruited exceptionally well. Head coach Ryan Day should have every reason to expect to contend for the College Football Playoff again this year.
The preseason poll has predicted an Ohio State title six times in the last eight years. They got it wrong in 2013 and 2015, with Michigan State taking the actual championship. In 2016 Penn State won it.