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Back-to-back losses in the final minute at Michigan State and Ohio State knocked the Badgers out of the national championship chase, too, but Wisconsin didn’t lose again, earning a ticket to Indianapolis for a surprising title game that league officials hope marks the end of a troublesome chapter in Big Ten football.

“You can’t erase the history that those four schools (Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State and Penn State) have had,” Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema said of the league’s most storied programs. “But, you know, history is in the history books. We try to focus on the now, what’s in the newspapers today.”