Ohio State picked to win Big Ten in media poll

Once again, Ohio State is the preseason favorite to win the Big Ten.

The Buckeyes claimed the top spot in the seventh annual cleveland.com preseason media poll, which functions as the Big Ten’s unofficial poll since the league does not conduct one itself.

This marks the third consecutive season — and the fourth time in five years — that Ohio State enters the year as the conference favorite. The Buckeyes were the pick of 29 of the 38 voters, a pack that includes at least one beat writer from all 14 schools and several others who cover the conference as a whole.

It should also be noted that this poll, conducted by cleveland.com columnist Doug Lesmerises, has not correctly picked the conference champion during the previous six years.

While Ohio State also received 34 first-place votes to win the East Division, Wisconsin was the overwhelming favorite to win the West. The Badgers picked up 31 first-place votes.

Indiana was picked to finish fifth in the East.

Meanwhile, Penn State running back Saquon Barkley was the runaway pick as the Big Ten’s Offensive Player of the Year. Barkley, a likely Heisman Trophy candidate, received 30 first-place votes. Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett was second in the poll and Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley was third.

Indiana receiver Simmie Cobbs also received a vote.

In the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year poll, Ohio State defensive lineman Tyquan Lewis edged Iowa linebacker Josey Jewell for top billing. IU linebacker Tegray Scales finished fourth in the poll, picking up four first-place votes.

Big Ten Media Days begin Monday in Chicago. Indiana will be represented by Scales, quarterback Richard Lagow and cornerback Rashard Fant.

The full poll results, including the ballot of yours truly, can be found below:

(For standings, seven points were assigned for first place, six for second and so on. In choosing players of the year, voters were asked to pick a top three. Three points were assigned for a first-place vote, two for second and one for third.)

East Division
1. Ohio State, 260 points (34 first-place votes)
2. Penn State, 231.5 (7)
3. Michigan, 192 (1)
4. Michigan State, 128
5. Indiana, 114
6. Maryland, 100.5
7. Rutgers, 38
(first-place votes equal more than 38 because of some ties for first)

West Division
1. Wisconsin, 259 points (31 first-place votes)
2. Northwestern, 219 (5)
3. Nebraska, 176.5 (2)
4. Iowa, 164.5
5. Minnesota, 131
6. Purdue, 57
6. Illinois, 57

Offensive Player of the Year
1. Saquon Barkley, Penn State RB, 103 points (30 first-place votes)
2. J.T. Barrett, Ohio State QB, 59 points (5)
3. Trace McSorley, Penn State QB, 30 points (2)
4. Justin Jackson, Northwestern RB, 25 points (1)
5. Mike Weber, Ohio State RB, 2 points
5. L.J. Scott, Michigan State RB, 2 points
5. Alex Hornibrook, Wisconsin QB, 2 points
5. Rodney Smith, Minnesota RB, 2 points
9. Troy Fumagalli, Wisconsin TE, 1 point
9. Simmie Cobbs, Indiana WR, 1 point
9. Jamarco Jones, Ohio State LT, 1 point

Defensive Player of the Year
1. Tyquan Lewis, Ohio State DE, 61 points (11 first-place votes)
2. Josey Jewell, Iowa LB, 59 points (12)
3. Rashan Gary, Michigan DE, 23 points (3)
4. Tegray Scales, Indiana LB, 19 points (4)
5. Jerome Baker, Ohio State LB, 12 points (2)
6. Sam Hubbard, Ohio State DE, 11 points (2)
7. Jack Cichy, Wisconsin LB, 10 points (1)
8. Maurice Hurst, Michigan DT, 9 points (1)
9. Marcus Allen, Penn State S, 9 points
10. T.J. Edwards, Wisconsin LB, 7 points (1)
11. Nick Bosa, Ohio State, DE 4 points (1)
12. Godwin Igwebuike, Northwestern S, 2 points
13. Steven Richardson, Minnesota DT, 1 point
13. Blessuan Austin, Rutgers CB, 1 point


Mike Miller’s ballot
East Division

1. Ohio State
2. Michigan
3. Penn State
4. Indiana
5. Michigan State
6. Maryland
7. Rutgers

West Division
1. Wisconsin
2. Northwestern
3. Iowa
4. Nebraska
5. Minnesota
6. Purdue
7. Illinois

Offensive Player of the Year
1. Saquon Barkley
2. J.T. Barrett
3. Mike Weber

Defensive Player of the Year
1. Tegray Scales
2. Nick Bosa
3. Josey Jewell


  1. Picked fifth in the BIG 10 East, behind Michigan State with all the off field problems they had. If IU finishes fifth in the BIG 10 East this year is this an improvement from the previous year? Looking forward to a great IU football season this year. GO HOOSIER!!!

  2. And in other news, the sun is picked to rise in the east tomorrow morning. Yawn.

    I hope no one strained themselves making that prediction.

  3. I was in East Lansing last week and their fan base is not very optimistic about the season. They are even thinking that they will be below .500 and not reach a bowl. They felt IU would finish higher than MSU in the Big Ten.

  4. This poll was just writers mailing it in without really thinking about the teams. How they think MSU is going to finish above IU with all the troubles they have had is beyond me. How is OSU picked over PSU after last season?

    IU can shake the football world up with a win over OSU. Yes I know it isn’t likely but there are reasons to believe it may happen. It will take several players that are ?marks to play to their ability IE Patrick, Lagow, and then OL. If all those play well then IU will surprise teams and instead of playing close will win several of those games. IU has been snake bit the past few years and maybe coach Allen will break that spell with IU getting most of the breaks this year.

  5. Preseason hopes, how do they dance upon a new sunrise,
    Buckeyes arrive with bright flowers to decorate the limestone of our grey Memorial?
    I do believe that’s IU blood I see boiling in Kevin Wilson’s vengeful eyes,
    Or is it a tiny bit of crimson in a sea of OSU red now ready for a beat-down tutorial?

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