The game was never in doubt, as Wisconsin jumped out to a furious 27-0 lead in the opening seconds of the second quarter. By the time the two teams entered halftime the gap had widened to an insurmountable 37-3 advantage, capped by a spectacular 46-yard touchdown scramble by Wilson with a minute left in second quarter.
The Rebels eventually mounted what little fight they had left, scoring the final 14 points of the game against a second-string Badger defense. Though, in all reality, the last-second mini-rally only hurt one particular sect of society. Never gamble on the first week of college football, folks.
Bret Bielema has a new toy, quarterback Russell Wilson, and he's not afraid to use him. We're midway through the third quarter in Madison and the Wisconsin Badgers are all over the UNLV Runnin' Rebels, 51-3. And don't you even think Bielema plans to even tap the breaks. This pedal will stay planted on the floor until the final whistle blows or UNLV cries uncle and retreats to the locker room.
Wilson has been as advertised thus far, completing 10 of 13 passes for 255 yards and two touchdowns. For good measure, Wilson added another two carries for 62 yards and a touchdown, by way of a 48 yard scamper.
And when you add Wilson's performance to that of the Wisconsin running backs, a deadly offense emerges. James White and Montee Ball have already combined for four touchdowns, three of which belong to Ball, in the route. The two are neck-and-neck in the yardage category, with White picking up 64 yards on 11 carries and Ball adding 63 yards on 10 carries. Ball added a touchdown catch, as well, and leads all receivers with two catches for 67 yards.
The only question remaining is whether the Badgers will break 80. It remains to be seen, but let's not act like they won't give it the ol' college try.
The Russell Wilson regime has begun in Madison: the N.C. State transfer was as good as he could be on his first drive, throwing twice for two completions, amounting to 27 yards and a touchdown. Measuring his Wisconsin Badgers performance against UNLV, especially after just one drive, isn't going to tell us a whole lot, but he doesn't look like he's missed a beat yet.
Montee Ball got five titanic carries on the drive, and that's the kind of run/pass distribution that could make Wilson really, really dangerous. Not to mention the Badgers defense, which got the ball right back. Too many times in his Wolfpack career he looked as if he felt like he had to do everything himself on offense.