The Gophers moved up two spots to eighth in the latest College Football Playoff rankings after beating Northwestern on Saturday.
The Gophers (10-1) will play host to the 12th-ranked Wisconsin Badgers (9-2) on Saturday at TCF Bank Stadium in a game that will decide who wins the Big Ten West title and plays Big Ten East champion Ohio State in the conference title game on Dec. 7 in Indianapolis.
The Buckeyes (11-0) moved into the top spot in the CFP rankings after beating Penn State, passing No. 2 LSU (11-0). Clemson (11-0) and Georgia (10-1) remained at Nos. 3-4, respectively. The top four teams in the CFP rankings advance to the college football playoff.
Alabama (10-1), Utah (10-1) and Oklahoma (10-1) also are ahead of Minnesota. Utah moved up one spot and Oklahoma went up two from last week’s rankings.
Penn State (9-2) fell two spots to No. 10 after its loss to the Buckeyes. Other ranked Big Ten teams include No. 13 Michigan (9-2) and No. 17 Iowa (8-3).
As things currently stand with the CFP rankings, the Gophers would be headed to the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., as the highest-ranked Big Ten team not in the top four. Minnesota would face Utah in the Jan. 1 game because the Rose Bowl is guaranteed the Pac-12 champion, if that team falls outside of the CFP semifinals.
The semifinals on Dec. 28 would feature Ohio State against Georgia in the Fiesta Bowl and LSU would play Clemson in the Peach Bowl, according to ESPN. The fifth version of the CFP rankings will be revealed on Dec. 3 and the final rankings will be announced on Dec. 8.