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Wisconsin football: the Badgers are back in the polls, nerds!

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After their fifth straight win, UW is back in the AP and Coaches polls after a lengthy absence this season.

Wisconsin v Rutgers Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

It took five straight wins, but for the first time in almost two months, the Wisconsin Badgers are ranked in both major polls. In the AP Poll, the Badgers come in at No. 20 and in the USA Today Coaches Poll UW ranks No. 24.

A season that once looked bleak for the Badgers has done a complete 180-degree turn over the past month, as Wisconsin now controls its own destiny and is on track to represent the Big Ten West in Indianapolis in the Big Ten Championship Game. As great as this five game winning streak has been, it will not mean much if the Badgers cannot turn it into an eight game winning streak to end the regular season.

With their sixth win of the season, Wisconsin is bowl eligible for the 20th consecutive season.

The B1G

  • Ohio State —> No. 5 Coaches Poll, No. 6 AP Poll
  • Michigan State —> No. 9 Coaches Poll, No. 8 AP Poll
  • Michigan —> No. 8 Coaches Poll, No. 9 AP Poll
  • Iowa —> No. 14 Coaches Poll, No. 19 AP Poll
  • Wisconsin —> No. 24 Coaches Poll, No. 20 AP Poll
  • Penn State —> No. 23 Coaches Poll, No. 23 AP Poll
  • Purdue —> receiving votes Coaches Poll, receiving votes AP Poll
  • Minnesota —> receiving votes Coaches Poll, no votes AP Poll

Nationwide musings

  • Another top ranked Big Ten team falters. For the fifth time this season, an AP top-six ranked Big Ten team suffers a loss. Coming off a massive rivalry win versus Michigan, Michigan State was on “upset watch” all week. For the second time in four weeks, Purdue played spoiler (def. No. 2 Iowa in Week 7) and ended a College Football Playoff run for a fellow Big Ten program.
  • Cincinnati got screwed. In the initial College Football Playoff rankings, the undefeated Bearcats, currently ranked No. 2 in the AP Poll, came in at No. 6 behind Georgia, Alabama, Michigan State, Oregon and Ohio State. This gives Cincinnati little to no shot to make the playoff, as their chances to boost their resume are dwindling.

Here’s my issue: If an undefeated Group of 5 team cannot earn the respect of a committee to put them in, the system has to be changed. This team has done EVERYTHING they have been asked to and it looks like it won’t be enough. Michigan State lost and will drop out of the top four in this week’s rankings, which should boost Cincy up to No. 5. Respect the undefeated Group of FIve squad or change the system to one that will have no choice but to do so.

  • Is Alabama really the No. 2 team in the country? They lost to Texas A&M, barely squeaked by Florida and don’t have another quality win on their resume outside of Ole Miss. They’ve beat up on bad Miami (Fla.), Mercer and Southern Miss teams, as well as Mississippi State, Tennessee and LSU all of which are at or just below .500. Bryce Young is probably going to win the Heisman, but their lack of a quality win (which Cincy has...if you can’t tell I’m just really pissed about Cincinnati) has me strongly questioning this Crimson Tide team.

Newcomers

AP Top-25: No. 20 Wisconsin, No. 21 North Carolina State, No. 25 Pittsburgh

Coaches Poll: No. 24 Wisconsin, No. 25 Louisiana-Lafayette

Drop outs

AP Top-25: No. 18 Kentucky. No. 23 Southern Methodist, No. 25 Fresno State

Coaches Poll: No. 17 Kentucky, No. 24 Southern Methodist