Badger Badger Badger
Before getting into the Profile in Badassery today, Adam Hoge from Bucky's 5th Quarter was kind enough to swap some questions with me this week. Let's hope his Badgers will be kind on our Boilers tomorrow. My answers to his questions are posted at Bucky's 5th Quarter, while his answers to my questions are as follows:
1. With the way Wisconsin physically dominated a better, more healthy Purdue team last year, do you really have anything to fear?
Not going to lie, I look at this as three bye weeks in a row with Indiana coming to Madison next weekend. The Badgers literally limped out of Iowa City with a win two weeks ago and need to get healthy. It sounds like most of the wounded Badgers will play this weekend, but freshman running back James White is still questionable and defensive tackle Jordan Kohout could be limited. If that is the case, there's no reason to play either of them. This is just a poor matchup for Purdue. The last thing the Boilermakers need is a physical team like the Badgers coming into West Lafayette and roughing them up more. If UW has a hole in its defense, it's in its secondary, but it doesn't sound like Purdue is going to throw the football at all. And I just don't see how the Boilers will have an answer for Wisconsin's offensive line. Remember last year when the Badgers ran the ball like 11 straight times to start the game and marched right down the field? I expect that to happen early and often Saturday.
2. You mentioned being upset by Beilema going for it on 4th down late in last year's game, then there was the flap with Tim Brewster this year. What is his deal?
I really don't know. I think the thing with Brewster this season was just another chapter in a bad relationship. They never liked each other and everyone knew it. I don't really remember the fourth down last year, but it doesn't surprise me. I don't know if Bielema just likes to make a point or if he is using it as coaching. Either way, it's probably not necessary.
3. Do you see Wisconsin playing disciplined football like Illinois did, taking advntage of Purdue's mistakes, or will they be a little more aggressive?
I don't see Wisconsin being too aggressive. The only times the Badgers have been very aggressive this season was late in their two wins over Ohio State and Iowa. Against the Buckeyes, offensive coordinator called for a play action pass to put the dagger in Ohio State and then of course there was the fake punt against Iowa. You could argue both calls were necessary as the underdog. I expect a very conservative gameplan this week. Run the football, throw short passes, don't give up the big plays and get out of Purdue with a win.
4. Give me one reason, other than injury, that John Clay doesn't run for 200 yards in this game?
Well a good reason is that he hasn't come anywhere close to 200 this season because of the offensive gameplans. The Badgers have used a two-headed running attack all season and even though White might not play, Ball is very capable of coming in and getting 10-15 carries. With that said, if he is going to get 200 yards in a game this season, it will probably happen Saturday.
5. What is the only scenario in which you see Wisconsin losing on Saturday.
Unless the 2008 Badgers come back from the dead, I just don't see it happening. This group of players is anything but overconfident and I think they realized last year how a late-season road loss can hurt a season (losing at Northwestern cost them a New Year's Day bowl last year). The stakes are even higher this year as we are talking about a Big Ten Championship and a BCS bowl game. The focus is there and we know the talent is there. Crazy things happen on the road, but considering Wisconsin just won at Iowa, I just can't see a way in which the Badgers lose this game.