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ESPN's FPI Names The Favorite In the Big Ten

The FPI is here.

The 2017 college football season is in the rearview, as Alabama walked away with another title. In a "down" year for the SEC, the conference secured both spots in the title game, and walked away with the nation's top recruiting class, Georgia.

ESPN's computer model, however, does not have Alabama sitting in the top spot. Georgia neither.

The Worldwide Leader has Clemson in the top due to the insane amount of returning talent that could have gone pro, but instead are destined to return for a title. Alabama and Georgia rounded out the top three.

Sitting in fourth, and the favorite to win the Big Ten for the second consecutive year, is Ohio State. The Buckeyes rank in the top 10 in all three phases of the game, offense, defense, and special teams.

Ohio State holds down the No. 1 spot despite several impending changes to the team, especially at starting quarterback. J.T. Barrett is gone, and Dwayne Haskins will likely be the starter come the 2018 season.

It's no surprise to see Penn State in second, but there are a few surprises throughout the rankings. Michigan State sits at No. 10, while Michigan, despite its struggles in 2017, sits at No. 11.

And no, the model does not project Shea Patterson as the starter for the Wolverines. Here are the full Big Ten standings.

  1. Ohio State
  2. Penn State
  3. Michigan State
  4. Michigan
  5. Wisconsin
  6. Iowa
  7. Northwestern
  8. Purdue
  9. Nebraska
  10. Minnesota
  11. Maryland
  12. Indiana
  13. Rutgers
  14. Illinois

We'll get a good look at just how competitive the Wolverines can be this upcoming season as they open the season against Notre Dame. Who do you think is the favorite to win the Big Ten?

[ESPN]