Badgers dreaming of confetti while focusing on Hoosiers

Written by Garin Turner


The 9th ranked Wisconsin Badgers (8-0, 5-0 BIG 10) are in an interesting situation going into Saturday’s game against the Indiana Hoosiers, (3-5, 0-5 BIG 10) on the road at 11 AM CST on ABC. The Badgers probably feel disrespected at their No. 9 ranking in the College Playoff Football Poll. They’re probably tired of being called out on their lack of schedule. They cannot overlook the Hoosiers though as they are a dangerous opponent and an easy one to sleep on.

Wisconsin is coming off a sloppy win over the Illinois Fighting Illini last week. Indiana is much better than their record indicates. They gave 6th ranked (2nd at the time) Ohio State a run for their money for most of the game in the opening week. They also took a then ranked 17th Michigan team into overtime. Indiana then followed that up by losing 17-9 to at the time, 18th ranked Michigan State and lost a tough game to Maryland last week.

Wisconsin might be without their top playmaker on offense, as starting running back Jonathan Taylor didn’t play in the second half of the Illinois game due to a leg injury. If Taylor, who has 161 carries for 1,185 yards and 11 touchdowns on the season can’t go, a combination of running backs Bradrick Shaw, Garrett Groshek and Chris James will be left to handle the load.

Wisconsin quarterback Alex Hornibrook might have to do more with his arm in this one as well. Hornibrook has completed 108 of 168 passes for 1,570 yards with 13 touchdowns and eight interceptions.

Indiana quarterback Peyton Ramsey leads his offense onto the field against a Badgers defense that’s allowing just 12.9 points a game and 174.2 passing yards a game. Ramsey has completed 134 of 205 passes for 1,252 yards with 10 touchdowns and five interceptions.

The Indiana ground game is led by running back Morgan Ellison, who has 100 carries for 473 yards and three touchdowns.

Even with the potential of Taylor not playing for the Badgers, the Hoosiers will need to keep Wisconsin off the field and in 3rd and long situations.

This game is the first meeting between the two teams since 2013. Wisconsin holds a 40-18-2 advantage in the series.

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