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Wisconsin’s upset of Ohio State has given Bret Bielema the kind of signature win he hasn’t had until now, says our WIsconsin blog, Bucky’s 5th Quarter. But the season isn’t a success yet.
It was the kind of win Bielema lacked on his resume and it was the kind of win his players have failed to deliver in conference play the last four and a half years. But that monkey is definitely off their back. …
This game could be seen as a hump that Bielema and the Badgers finally got over. They won the big one. But with a 2-1 record and a daunting trip to Iowa looming, Wisconsin still has a ton of work to do.
Check out the full recap at Bucky’s 5th Quarter.
Our Ohio State blog, Along the Olentangy, says that the key moment in the Ohio State vs. Wisconsin game might have been the first play.
In hindsight the opening kickoff was a back breaker. It was the exact punch Wisconsin needed and put OSU in a hole they were never able to dig out of. …
Frustratingly, that was a game that OSU simply let get away from them in the first half. Somehow they needed to find a way to swing the momentum, but were never able to do so.
Check out Along the Olentangy’s full recap for more.
Madison, WI (Sports Network) — David Gilreath returned the game’s opening kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown and John Clay went over the century mark in rushing and had two scores, as 18th-ranked Wisconsin sent No. 1 Ohio State to a 31-18 defeat before a rowdy crowd at Camp Randall Stadium.
The Badgers (6-1, 2-1 Big Ten) built a three-touchdown lead before watching the Buckeyes get within three points early in the fourth quarter. James White stemmed the tide with a 12-yard scoring run and Wisconsin held on to send the No. 1 team to a loss for the second straight week. Last Saturday, South Carolina pulled off its first ever win over a top-ranked team with a 35-21 triumph over Alabama.
Now begs the question, which team will be No. 1 come Sunday? Oregon should move into that role, although the Ducks were idle this weekend. Boise State, the No. 3 team, was dominating San Jose State Saturday night.
It’s the first time Wisconsin has knocked off the top-ranked team in the country since September 12, 1981, when the Badgers topped Michigan in Madison. Wisconsin had lost its last four games against top-ranked clubs and is just 4-16 all-time in such contests. One of those was a win over the Buckeyes in 1942.
Dan Herron rushed for a pair of touchdowns for Ohio State (6-1, 2-1), which was riding a 12-game winning streak going back to last season. This was the Buckeyes’ fifth Big Ten loss in their last 44 such games.
Blake Sorensen thwarted an Ohio State drive late in the fourth by intercepting Pryor. Right after the clock wound down, fans rushed the field to celebrate with the Badgers.
Because college football is the only game that crowns its champion based on polls — for better or for worse — there is a certain aura that goes with being No. 1 and beating No. 1.
This week, it’s Wisconsin that claims the pelt of the formerly top-ranked team in the nation, taking down Ohio State 31-18 in Camp Randall and shaking up the championship picture for the second week in a row.
Not surprisingly, the Badgers relied on the running game for the upset; John Clay and James White combined to rush for 179 yards and three touchdowns on 39 carries. Scott Tolzien was 13-of-16 for 152 yards and an interception.
Meanwhile, Wisconsin largely held Terrelle Pryor in check. The Ohio State quarterback was 14-of-28 for 156 yards and an interception and rushed for 56 yards on 18 carries.
The Badgers’ reward? Traveling to Kinnick Stadium next week to take on Iowa.
Philip Welch just banged through a 41-yard field goal with a bit more than four minutes left, meaning Ohio State needs a lot of help to avoid being the second No. 1 to lose in as many weeks.
The key play of the drive was a 33-yard pass from Scott Tolzien to Jacob Pedersen on first down.
James White just capped a 73-yard, 10-play drive with Wisconsin’s third rushing touchdown of the night, bumping the Badgers’ up to 10 points with less than seven minutes left in the game.
White carried the ball three times starting at the Ohio State 23 for the score. Scott Tolzien was 4-of-5 for 45 yards on the drive.
Pryor was 5-of-5 for 51 yards on the drive, not counting the conversion. The Buckeyes ate up almost 10 minutes of clock.
The Buckeyes have decided to make a game of it after all. Terrelle Pryor hit two passes for 35 yards and added a 13-yard rush to lead Ohio State down the field. Dan Herron ran for another 32 yards on six carries, including a 13-yard TD rush.
Wisconsin is now driving again.
Last week, No. 1 Alabama lost 35-21 to South Carolina in Columbia. Wisconsin is looking to add another week to the chaos in the BCS standings by taking a 21-3 lead into the locker room at Camp Randall.
Wisconsin has outgained Ohio State by more than 100 yards, 197-93, and has 14 first downs to the Buckeyes’ eight. John Clay has rushed for 88 yards and 2 TDs.
Meanwhile, the Badgers defense has largely contained Terrelle Pryor, limiting him to 4-of-11 passing for 25 yards and 30 yards rushing on eight carries.
With 4:24 left in the first half, Ohio State got a break when Wisconsin QB Scott Tolzien threw an interception and the officials called a questionable personal foul on the Badgers to set up the Buckeyes at the Wisconsin 23.
But once again the Wisconsin defense stepped up and forced a FG — which Devin Barclay kicked a bit too far to the left. Still 21-3 approaching the half.
Terrelle Pryor seemed to spark the Buckeyes on their third drive of the game, running for 17 yards on a third-and-nine to extend a drive that eventually made its way to the Wisconsin 3.
But the Badgers defense then locked things down again, and Ohio State kicked the field goal. The journey of 1,000 miles …
John Clay scored his second touchdown of the game — by a few inches — to bring his total yardage for the night to 74 and the Wisconsin lead to 21-0.
Whether the mystique of Camp Randall was as effective as some predicted or not, Ohio State has not looked like the No. 1 team in the nation so far. The ratings for this game should be headed upward right now in Boise, Dallas and Tuscaloosa, to name but a few markets.
Ohio State has been largely silent on offense so far — a would-be first down was nullified when Jake Stoneburner’s “catch” was reviewed and found to have hit the ground — and Wisconsin has continued to grind out the yardage. The Buckeyes have 35 total yards to the Badgers’ 122. A large majority of those yards have come from the running game powered by John Clay and James White.
After stopping Ohio State on its opening drive, Wisconsin — or rather, John Clay drove down the field on its second possession of the game to extend the lead to 14-0. Clay rushed for 51 of the 58 yards the Badgers covered en route to the endzone.
Ohio State has the ball back and will try to keep things from getting out of hand. The crowd is getting pretty loud at this point.
It didn’t take long for Wisconsin to try to set up the upset against Ohio State. David Gilreath took the opening kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown. Eleven seconds in, and the Badgers have a lead.
SB Nation's Along The Olentangy breaks down the Wisconsin offense in advance of this weekend's game:
Wisconsin's offense is a direct decedent of the one-back offenses pioneered by Joe Gibbs with the Washington Redskins and Dennis Erickson at the college level.
Wisconsin operates almost entirely from '12' personnel (1 RB, 2TE). Though at first glance it may seem like a one-back offense is more geared for passing, coaches like Erickson went to the one-back offense to run the football. A one-back formation theoretically makes running the football easier in two ways. First, with 12 personnel it creates an 8th gap that the defense must defend. (H/T: Brophy).
Second, it presents the defense with four immediate vertical threats, forcing defenses to often respond with 2-high safeties. These two components stretch the defense out, creating more running lanes for talented tailbacks with vision.
SB Nation's Bucky's 5th Quarter makes a gloomy prediction for this weekend's Wisconsin-Ohio State game:
People make a lot of the Badgers' home record as well as their record in night games, but Wisconsin has actually lost two of its last three home night games, one of which was against Ohio State. It's going to take more than one of the most raucous crowds Camp Randall Stadium has ever seen to beat these Buckeyes.
We documented the Badgers' struggles against ranked teams under head coach Bret Bielema both before and after their loss to Michigan State two weeks ago. Specifically, heading into a contest against the top-ranked team in the land, Bielema is winless against top-10 opponents. While Wisconsin will have the crowd on its side in a nationally televised night game and should be playing with nothing to lose, it is still hard to pick the Badgers to win the type of game they have consistently struggled with.
(Sports Network) For the first time since 1997, the top-ranked team in the country will invade Madison, as newly crowned number-one ranked Ohio State battles 18th-ranked Wisconsin in a Big Ten battle at Camp Randall Stadium.
It is just the ninth time ever that the Badgers have played host to the top team in the land and they have only three wins in the previous eight encounters to show for it. However, this is a team in 2010 that has looked sharp in racing out to a 5-1 overall record. The lone loss came in the Big Ten opener two weeks ago at Michigan State (34-24), but Bret Bielema's squad evened its league record up with last weekend's 41-23 victory over Minnesota.
Jim Tressel's Buckeyes have supplanted defending national champion Alabama atop the polls, thanks to the Crimson Tide's loss at South Carolina. It marks the firs time the team has been ranked number one since the final regular season poll of the 2007 campaign. Currently, OSU is riding a 12-game win streak and enters this matchup at 6-0 overall and 2-0 in Big Ten play. The Buckeyes made light work of Indiana last weekend, 38-10, earning Tressel his 100th victory at OSU.
The Buckeyes hold a 53-17-5 advantage in the all-time series with the Badgers, including a 25-10-2 mark in Madison.
Heisman hopeful Terrelle Pryor passed for a career-high 334 yards and three TDs in leading the Buckeyes past Indiana this past week. Most of that came in the first half of the game. The Ohio State offense is predicated on the rushing and passing exploits of Pryor, who has been stellar in both areas this season. He is second on the team in rushing (354 yards, three TDs) and has really elevated his play as a passer, completing 68 percent of his throws, for 1,359 yards, with 15 TDs and just three INTs.
Tailback Dan Herron has rushed for one more yard than Pryor, but is responsible for seven of the team's 15 rushing TDs to date.
The Hoosiers had put up some stellar stats coming into the contest with Ohio State, but as has been the case with most offensive teams, the OSU defense stepped up and completely shut them down. Indiana managed a mere 210 yards of total offense in the lopsided loss to the Buckeyes.
The numbers on the season have been similar, with OSU holding foes to just 237.0 yards of total offense. The OSU defense is once again stacked with All- American talent, highlighted by senior LB Ross Homan (team-high 37 tackles, one sacks, one INT, one fumble recovery). Fellow senior LB Brian Rolle is next in line (30 tackles). Defensive linemen Nathan Williams (24 tackles, 5.0 TFLs, 1.5 sacks), Cameron Heyward (16 tackles, 4.5 TFLs) and Dexter Larimore (16 tackles, 4.0 TFLs, 1.5 sacks) are getting the job done up front.
The key to Wisconsin's success this season is mistake-free football on the offensive side. The Badgers come into this game without turning the ball over in four-plus outings.
Another key strength on offense is Wisconsin's ability to enforce its will with a stellar ground game. The team is averaging 240.8 yards on the ground, getting it done on 5.6 yards per carry. A potent one-two punch in the form of John Clay (692 yards, 6.0 ypc, nine TDs) and James White (485 yards, 7.7 ypc, eight TDs) is a reason for concern by for defensive coordinator trying to slow Wisconsin down.
Wisconsin's ground attack is something that coach Tressel is concerned about.
"Their running backs, I think Number 20 has added another dimension to -- obviously John Clay is extraordinary, but you bring in that tempo change guy and all of a sudden, he hits you with a different type look and I think he's added a great look. I think in the last three games he's rushed for 300 and some odd yards and is a good player. He's their kickoff return guy as well. So they're all that everyone expects them to be."
Wisconsin quarterback Scott Tolzien has done everything asked of him under center. He has completed nearly 70 percent of his throws, for 1,207 yards, with seven TDs and just two INTs. Lanc Kendricks has clearly been the go-to- guy down the field, leading the team in receptions (25), receiving yards (391) and TD catches (three).
Wisconsin's defensive play has been good, with opponents averaging only 19.0 ppg, on just over 300 yards of total offense. One area of concern has to be the lack of big plays by this unit so far though. The Badgers have just six takeaways and only 12 sacks in the first six games.
Senior LB Culme St. Jean leads the unit with 33 tackles. DE J.J. Watt (30 tackles, 8.5 TFLs, 2.0 sacks), LB Mike Taylor (26 tackles, 6.0 TFLs) and DE Louis Nzegwu (23 tackles, 4.5 TFLs, 2.0 sacks) have down the most damage upfield.
Bielema knows that preparation is the key when taking on a team like Ohio State.
"Now to go against the competition or to go against an opponent at the level Ohio States been able to uphold for so long is going to be a nice measuring stick. And I think our guys will have that in the back of their minds and move forward, and hopefully, everybody will be in a position to be at their best on Saturday. We just have to go out and do what we do on a daily basis to get to Saturday. We can't jump to Saturday today or we can't jump to Thursday today. We have to jump to where we are on Monday, progress to Tuesday, and move ourselves through the week."
This will be the Buckeyes' toughest challenge to date. The Badgers will do their best to slow things down and keep OSU's offense off the field. That of course is easier said than done. Look for OSU to pass its first big test, as it successfully defends its top-ranking, although it isn't going to come easy.
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