Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Bucky Five: It's About Time We Put Up 70

1. 70 - I have to admit, I had some bad feelings about the Badgers when I woke up on Saturday morning. One of the dreams that I had during a drunk night of slumber was that the Badgers had dropped a non-conference game to UW-Parkside by a score of 44-41. Keep in mind that UW-Parkside doesn't even have a football team, and it's athletic department is actually most well known for race-walking. No joke. I guess realistically though I really didn't think that the Badgers would lose to Austin Peay, but I never would have envisioned a 70-point performance. Those kind of scores are usually reserved for SEC teams during their non-conference schedule, not for a run-first team like the Badgers. The seventy points the Badgers scored on Saturday not only meant a lot of push-ups for Bucky but it was also the most points that the Badgers have ever scored in the modern era, as they say. The previous record was the 69 points that Wisconsin put up against New Mexico State in 1961.

2. So, How'd They Do It? - The easiest way to get to 70 points is to score ten touchdowns, and that's how the Badgers did it on Saturday. You knew things were going to go well right from the start when fullback Bradie Ewing scored on his first carry of the game, and he actually ended up catching a touchdown from Scott Tolzien as well. Tolzein had two more touchdowns on the day, finishing with 217 yards before he was lifted for the reserves (one of whom was Mike Tice's son? Whaaaat?). The other six TD's came from the rushing game, one from John Clay, one from Montee Ball, and four from the man pictured above.

3. Speaking of the Man Pictured Above - That would be James White, the freshman running back that ran for 145 yards on 11 carries. Of those 11 carries, four of those happened to be touchdowns. John Clay put in his usual 118 yards and a touchdown keeping his potential Heisman candidacy in tact, but it was James White that stole the show in this game. I don't know how the Badgers do it, but the way they just bring quality running backs one after another is quite impressive.

4. Let's Not Forget the Defense - Granted, Austin Peay really didn't have anything to offer offensively, but let's give it up to the Badgers defense for holding their opponent to just three points. The field goal that the Governors were able to score was of 51 yards, so they definitely earned those three points. Other than that though, the team with the Associated Press style logo (here's Peay's for comparison) only gained 157 total yards and only converted two third downs. Interestingly enough, Austin Peay never actually turned the ball over, they just couldn't really muster anything up on offense.

5. Not Yet a Unanimous Top Ten Team - Despite the win, the Badgers did not move up in the Associated Press poll as they are still ranked at number 11. Both Stanford and Auburn leapfrogged the Badgers, with wins over Notre Dame and South Carolina respectively. The Auburn move makes sense, as they beat #12 South Carolina, but I don't think beating Notre Dame should have put Stanford over Bucky. The voters of the USA Today poll agree with that sentiment, as Wisconsin did move up one spot to number 9. The Badgers have a big matchup with Michigan State next weekend to open conference play, as the Spartans are ranked in the Top 25 in both polls.


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