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Michigan State beat Wisconsin and Wisconsin beat Ohio State, but Michigan State and Ohio State didn’t play. Head-to-head results are only used to break a three-way tie like this in the Big Ten if one team beat the other two or one team lost to the other two.

The three teams have identical overall records of 11-1 to go with their 7-1 conference marks, so the BCS rankings will be the deciding factor.

This is the last time for the foreseeable future that the league’s automatic berth to a BCS bowl will be determined in this manner. Next year, the Big Ten will add Nebraska as its 12th member, split into two divisions and hold a championship game.

Beyond the three co-champions, there are five Big Ten teams that are bowl eligible. Illinois, Iowa and Penn State finished tied for fourth in the league, and if Illinois wins at Fresno State on Friday night, all three of those teams will be 7-5. Michigan and Northwestern also finished 7-5 but were a game behind in conference play in a tie for seventh.

The Outback Bowl is supposed to have the next pick among Big Ten teams after the Capital One, and the conference also has ties with the Gator, Insight, Texas, TicketCity and Little Caesars Pizza bowls. Since only eight Big Ten teams are bowl eligible, the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl might be left looking elsewhere for a team.