The University of Iowa Hawkeyes football team snapped a 12-game home winning streak dating back to last season when Purdue beat them in Kinnick.
Still, sitting at 6-1, the ninth-ranked Iowa Hawkeyes have put themselves in prime position to play in the Big Ten Championship Game. They are currently tied atop the Big Ten West, and according to college football odds, they are one of the teams most likely to win the conference championship.
They control their own destiny, but will they bounce back and finish strong to take it home?
Iowa Hawkeyes’ Road Ahead
The first game for the Hawkeyes after their bye week may be the toughest.
They’ll head to Madison this weekend to take on a surging Wisconsin Badgers team. They’ve won three straight, including a 30-13 win at Purdue this past Saturday, and are 3-point favorites over Iowa for this one.
Following that, the University of Iowa will head to Northwestern University in a matchup that should be much easier.
The Hawkeyes then have another tough test when they host Minnesota. The way things stand now, the winner of this game will be in first place outright with just two games remaining.
The Iowa Hawkeyes football regular season schedule then concludes with games against Illinois and Nebraska. They should be favored in both of those and able to win them if they play well.
If Iowa wins out, they’d then have a date with the Big Ten East winner in the Big Ten Championship game.
Current Big Ten Standings
Every team in the Big Ten begins the year playing for their division crown and a trip to Lucas Oil Stadium for the conference crown. By now, the contenders have narrowed.
Iowa and Minnesota are tied for the Big Ten West lead. Right on their heels, and very much still in play for the top spot, are Purdue and Wisconsin. Illinois also has an outside shot but would need a lot of help to make it happen.
The East division is just as crowded. There is a three-way tie atop the division between Michigan State, Michigan, and championship favorites Ohio State. The only other team with a shot is Penn State, and like Illinois, they’d need help.
This week, those four teams will begin playing each other, with Michigan playing at Michigan State and Penn State traveling to Ohio State.
If Iowa were to win their division and play one of those four teams, Ohio State would likely pose the most significant challenge. They have one of the nation’s most explosive offenses and have won the past four conference titles.
Michigan and Michigan State will also be difficult but better matchups for the Hawkeyes. However, if Penn State somehow sneaks in, Iowa has to like their chances to win again in a rematch.
Can They Bring it Home?
The good news for the Iowa Hawkeyes is that they are in the driver’s seat. All they have to do is get there, and with one of the top defenses in the country, they have a chance to beat anyone. Winning every week from this point forward puts them in the Big Ten title game.
If you like the Hawkeyes’ chances to win the Big Ten, check out BetMGM’s Iowa sports betting for the best options out there.