The University of Wisconsin football team was picked to win the Big Ten west division this season by the conference’s media members.
Cleveland.com released its annual preseason media poll Friday morning, and the Badgers claimed 31 of 38 first-place votes to win the division while accumulating 259 overall points. Northwestern (219) was second with five first-place votes, followed by Nebraska (176.5, two first-place votes), Iowa (164.5) and Minnesota (131). Purdue and Illinois tied for sixth with 57 points.
Five voters picked UW to make the College Football Playoff.
Ohio State was picked to win the Big Ten Championship game and the east division, followed by Penn State, Michigan, Michigan State, Indiana, Maryland and Rutgers.
UW quarterback Alex Hornibrook (T-fifth) and tight end Troy Fumagalli (T-ninth) both received votes for the Big Ten preseason offensive player of the year, but the two collected just two and one points, respectively. Penn State running back Saquon Barkley finished first, followed by Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett, Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley and Northwestern running back Justin Jackson.
Badgers inside linebacker Jack Cichy finished seventh place with 10 points in the conference’s preseason defensive player of the year voting, while another inside linebacker, T.J. Edwards, was 10th with seven points. Ohio State defensive end Tyquan Lewis narrowly won the honor over Iowa linebacker Josey Jewell.