Big Ten Championship 2011, Wisconsin Vs. Michigan State: Badgers Headed To Rose Bowl

We'll see if the first-ever Big Ten Championship can sneak to a conclusion without a repeat of the theatrics these teams have performed against each other already this year. SHHH, INDIANAPOLIS IS SLEEPING. (8 p.m. ET Saturday on FOX.)

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Wisconsin Vs. Michigan State Final Score: Badgers Battle Back To Win Big Ten Championship Game, 42-39

The Wisconsin Badgers are the winners of the 2011 Big Ten Championship following a thrilling contest against the Michigan St. Spartans. The Badgers won, 42-39, but they had a bit of luck on their side in the final minutes of the game. The Badgers had to punt with around two minutes left in the game, and the Spartans had returned the ball to within five yards of the Badgers' end zone. That is, until a penalty flag was thrown for running into kicker. The Badgers got a first down and ran out the clock.

Go here for more Big Ten Championship Game updates and conversation.

The Badgers had opened up a 21-7 lead (on the strength of two Montee Ball touchdown runs) in the first quarter before entering halftime in a 29-21 deficit to the Spartans. In the third quarter, Russell Wilson and Kirk Cousins had dueling 40-plus yard touchdown passes for the Badgers and the Spartans, respectively.

Still, the Badgers were down, 36-28, entering the fourth quarter. But that didn't deter Russell Wilson. He found Montee Ball for a touchdown pass before failing on the two-point conversion. Michigan State added a field goal for a five-point lead. And yet Wilson and the Badgers still didn't give up. Wilson found Jeff Duckworth for a 36-yard pass that set up Montee Ball for his third touchdown run (with four total TDs in the game, Ball now has 38 total TDs in the season.

The Badgers will now head to the Rose Bowl to face the Oregon Ducks.

For more on this game, head over to Wisconsin blog Bucky's 5th Quarter and Michigan State blog The Only Colors. Visit SB Nation NCAA Football for more on Championship Weekend.

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Wisconsin Vs. Michigan State, Big Ten Championship 2011 Game Time, TV Schedule And More

A Hail Mary was all that separated the Wisconsin Badgers and Michigan State Spartans in their first meeting at Spartan Stadium. Both teams have had their ups and downs since then, though it's mostly been good times for both teams. They meet again at a neutral site on Saturday with a trip to a BCS bowl on the line, and neutral football fans can only hope that the rematch is nearly as good as the first game.

Wisconsin Badgers blog Bucky's 5th Quarter points out that Michigan State needed a lot to go their way to win the first matchup.

[T]he Badgers suffered a blocked punt, a blocked field goal, two of quarterback Russell Wilson's three interceptions on the season, a safety and the aforementioned Hail Mary, and were still tied with the Spartans as the game clock reached the single digits. A cleaner performance away from the raucous nighttime crowd at Spartan Stadium should lead to a Wisconsin victory.    

However, Michigan State blog The Only Colors doesn't think that MSU's performance was anything close to an aberration. Wisconsin has a highly-rated pass defense, but they haven't played anyone.

Wisconsin's pass defense has been ranked tops in the Big Ten by virtue of giving up only 144.5 yards through the air per game. This is my rebuttal. Quick: What do Edward Wright-Baker, Tre Robinson, Taylor MartinezBraxton MillerCaleb TerBushRobert Marve, MarQueis Gray, Nathan Scheelhaase, and the Matt McGloin/Rob Bolden have in common? Those are the quarterbacks other than Kirk Cousins that Wisconsin's faced in conference this season. The Badger defense also faced Northern Illinois QB Chandler Harnish, who must be better than at least half the QBs I just listed. So even though Wisconsin might have the top pass defense in the Big Ten, the degree of difficulty in quarterbacks faced hasn't been too steep.    

Game date, time: 8:00 p.m. ET, Saturday, Dec. 3

Location: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana

TV channel: FOX

Spread: Wisconsin favored by 10 points

Series history: Michigan State leads, 30-20

For more on this game, head over to Wisconsin blog Bucky's 5th Quarter and Michigan State blog The Only Colors. Visit SB Nation NCAA Football for more on Championship Weekend.

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