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2012 Big Ten Football Standings: Minnesota gets first conference win

The Golden Gophers finally broke through in conference play, and are one game from bowl eligibility.

Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

The Minnesota Golden Gophers are no longer winless in conference play, and they are now just one game away from returning to a bowl game. The Gophers are still last in the Legends Division, but no longer tied for last in the Big Ten overall.

The Nebraska Cornhuskers and Wisconsin Badgers are in the driver's seats in their respective divisions after Saturday. The Cornhuskers lead Legends, while the Badgers are on top of Leaders by default.

Ohio State is tops overall in the Big Ten, but the Buckeyes and the second place Nittany Lions will not be eligibile for the title game. That leaves Wisconsin, who is 3-2 in conference play, well ahead of 1-3 Indiana.

Nebraska now holds a tiebreaker over Michigan and Northwestern, as the Cornhuskers have beaten both those teams. Nebraska is still no guarantee for the division title, as they have a trip to East Lansing to face Michigan State and Penn State at home remaining on their schedule.

With two of the conference's top teams ineligible, it will surely be an exciting battle down the stretch as Legends teams work for the chance to play Wisconsin in the title game for a shot at the Rose Bowl.

Complete standings can be found below.

Big 10 Conference Standings

(updated 10.28.2012 at 2:01 AM EDT)

Leaders Division Conf Overall
Ohio St. Buckeyes 5 0 9 0
Penn St. Nittany Lions 3 1 5 3
Wisconsin Badgers 3 2 6 3
Indiana Hoosiers 1 3 3 5
Purdue Boilermakers 0 4 3 5
Illinois Fighting Illini 0 4 2 6
Legends Division Conf Overall
Nebraska Cornhuskers 3 1 6 2
Michigan Wolverines 3 1 5 3
Northwestern Wildcats 3 2 7 2
Iowa Hawkeyes 2 2 4 4
Michigan St. Spartans 2 3 5 4
Minnesota Golden Gophers 1 3 5 3

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.