Across the college football landscape, there were collective ooos and ahhhs this week over Michigan’s domination of Penn State.

Maybe it is Michigan, and not Ohio State, that is the team to beat in the Big Ten this season. And maybe thinking in terms of the B1G isn’t big enough.

Perhaps these Wolverines are built to win the whole enchilada.

After a week off, I can’t help but wonder if the Buckeyes are sitting back and thinking, “Oh, is that a fact?”

Though we’re at the midpoint of the season, Saturday’s game against Iowa marks the first time Ohio State faces a team that has already played Michigan. With that comes the first opportunity to effectively gauge the Buckeyes and Wolverines in an apples-to-apples fashion.

They aren’t the same apples, because the situations aren’t identical. Maybe a Gala and a Red Delicious.

Iowa hosted Michigan, which no doubt helped the Hawkeyes keep things close in a 27-14 loss. Jim Harbaugh’s offensive game plan was close to the vest, meant to minimize mistakes.

As a point spread of 30 indicates, the Hawks will be challenged to make a trip to Ohio Stadium as competitive. But if Iowa can keep it close going into the fourth quarter, the notion that Michigan is the B1G’s best team will gain steam.

Perhaps none of that really matters since it will be resolved on the field Nov. 26. But there’s a whole month to fill with speculation before then. And I’m in favor of anything that helps fuel that speculation.

Iowa (3-3, 1-2) at No. 2 Ohio State (6-0, 3-0)

When: Noon ET, FOX

B1G thought: What a fun matchup this should be. Ohio State’s offense leads the country with 24 plays of 30 yards or more. Iowa’s defense leads the country with only 3 plays of 30 or more yards allowed.

It’s the ultimate chess match between Ohio State offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson and Iowa defensive coordinator Phil Parker.

Unfortunately, the sheen is removed because Ohio State defensive coordinator Jim Knowles gets to face Iowa offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz, who is playing checkers with Monopoly pieces.

Whereas Ohio State’s offense leads the country with 8.1 yards per play, Iowa’s is 130th with 4.1 yards per play. Such a disparity should be impossible in the Big Ten — the Hawkeyes are sandwiched by Colorado State and UMass.

Since this is by definition a half-interesting matchup, look for it to stay close for about one half.

Indiana (3-4, 1-3) at Rutgers (3-3, 0-3)

When: Noon ET, BTN

B1G thought: Traditionalists gripe that the regular season won’t matter as much once the College Football Playoff expands. But they don’t appreciate that the regular season will always matter for matchups like Indiana at Rutgers.

This is the game circled on both team’s schedules, because it amounts to an elimination game. Win and the hopes of a bowl game are alive. Lose and you’re pretty much playing the rest of the season out on the string.

Those are big stakes. And CFP expansion will never affect them.

Purdue (5-2, 3-1) at Wisconsin (3-4, 1-3)

When: 3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN

B1G thought: All of us have already deemed Purdue’s Nov. 15 game at Illinois as the one that will decide the Big Ten West title. And it probably will. But the Boilermakers must make their way through their most haunted house in order to make that happen.

Wisconsin is a stunning 2.5-point favorite in this contest, and it’s because bookmakers can’t avoid the pull of history. The Badgers have beaten the Boilermakers 14 straight times dating back to 2004.

Kyle Orton is the most recent Purdue quarterback to beat Wisconsin, leading the Boilers to a 26-23 win at Camp Randall in 2003. That’s so long ago now that current Badgers coach Jim Leonhard was on the field as a player that day.

Aidan O’Connell is Purdue’s best quarterback since Orton, and now is his opportunity to prove that point once more.

Wisconsin has dominated this series because it has dominated the trenches, but Purdue’s interior looks more solid than it has in decades.

If the Boilers are ever going to end this losing streak, the time is now.

Northwestern (1-5, 1-2) at Maryland (5-2, 2-2)

When: 3:30 p.m. ET, BTN

B1G thought: In the loosest sense of this term possible, Northwestern still controls its fate in the Big Ten West race. The Wildcats still control their destiny against Illinois and Purdue, and would be the West champs if they run the table.

This only bears mentioning because the possibility is hilarious. And likely short-lived once the Terrapins get through with them.

Maryland coach Michael Locksley says quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa is a game-time decision, which is some relief considering that he was carted off the field at Indiana. And given that Tagovailoas are quite willing to play through anything, I’m guessing we see Taulia on the field.

Minnesota (4-2, 1-2) at No. 16 Penn State (5-1, 2-1)

When: 7:30 p.m. ET, ABC

B1G thought: Ahh, what could have been.

When this game was given the prime-time treatment, it felt probable both teams would be ranked and possible that both would be undefeated. Instead, the Golden Gophers enter on a 2-game losing streak and the Nittany Lions are trying to prevent one.

Perhaps the only answer to come out of this game is whether PJ Fleck or James Franklin is the more overrated coach.

The quarterback situation also bears monitoring.

This was expected to be a meeting between Minnesota’s Tanner Morgan and Penn State’s Sean Clifford. The up-and-down sixth-year seniors are basically the meme of Spider-Men pointing at each other.

Both left last week’s games early with injuries. Morgan left the Illinois game on a cart after being punched in the head, and Clifford had a less-obvious trip to the medical tent.

Maybe both will play. Maybe neither will play. Perhaps only Clifford will play. Or only Morgan.

Remember, the speculation is half the fun.