Big Ten releases revised college football schedule for 2021 season

The Ohio State-Michigan matchup, as well as the rest of the Big Ten's traditional rivalry games, will return to the final week of the regular season in 2021, it was announced Friday as the conference released its revised 2021 football schedule.

The schedule has some differences from the one originally released in 2017, including the location of some games as well as the order in which they are played.

The Big Ten shortened its 2020 season to eight games because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and six games were played at the same location as the previous year. The changes to the 2021 schedule avoid having the same home team three years in a row for those games.

Ohio State, which represented the Big Ten in the College Football Playoff this past season, will open up its conference slate against Minnesota on Thursday, Sept. 2.

In addition to the annual clash between the Buckeyes and Wolverines, which will be held in Ann Arbor this season, other rivalry games slated for Nov. 27 include Wisconsin-Minnesota, Northwestern-Illinois and Indiana-Purdue.

The official schedule also features a couple of neutral-site games -- Nebraska and Illinois will tentatively kick off the Big Ten season in Dublin, Ireland, on Aug. 28, while Wisconsin will face Notre Dame on Sept. 25 at Soldier Field in Chicago.

Adding intrigue to that matchup is that former Wisconsin quarterback Jack Coan could be facing his former team after announcing his transfer to Notre Dame this offseason.

Sources also told ESPN's Adam Rittenberg that Northwestern's home game against Purdue on Nov. 20 will be played at Wrigley Field in Chicago. The Wildcats were scheduled to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field last season before the schedules changed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Bret Bielema, who was hired as Illinois' coach on Dec. 19, will face his former team in Wisconsin for the first time on Oct. 9 in Champaign.

Indiana, which finished 6-1 in the Big Ten last season, will open its season on the road against Iowa. The Hoosiers also will host Cincinnati in Week 3.

Week 2 also has intriguing nonconference matchups, as Ohio State will host Oregon, Michigan will host Washington and Iowa will resume its rivalry with Iowa State on the road.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.