Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wisconsin's Rushing Defense Proves to be the Best

As much as the dynamic game of football has evolved since its creation, one simple strategy has remained a constant on every level of play: run the ball to control the game.
While running back John Clay continues to make a case for Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, the Wisconsin defense understands perfectly well how vital it is to put opposing running backs on lockdown.
The Badgers have claimed the top rushing defensive unit in the Big Ten and much of the team’s success this season can be attributed to having not allowed any conference opponents to reach 100 yards of rushing offense in a game.
“We’re very proud of that. It’s something we feel like is a measure of toughness in a game,” defensive coordinator Dave Doeren said. “Our guys take a lot of pride in being accountable for each other and it shows that they’re measuring up to it.”
With the final Big Ten game against Northwestern approaching, Wisconsin could become the first team to prevent all of its Big Ten opponents from reaching 100 rushing yards in one season since Ohio State did so in 1988.
It would sure be nice to have the Badgers finish 10-2 and win thier bowl game. It would help recruting in the off season to potentially get them back to a BCS bowl. GO BUCKY!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

On Wisconsin Turns 100 years old


If Wisconsin's essence were distilled to one four-note riff, it would be this: D, C-sharp, E, D.
Whether played on trumpets or pianos, sung by sopranos or tenors, thumped from synthesizers or shouted by rappers, those four musical notes are encoded into Wisconsin's DNA.
The notes, as well as the rest of the ditty that would become not just the Badger fight song but Wisconsin's state song, were first performed 100 years ago Tuesday when a glee club warbled "On, Wisconsin!" for the first time in practice followed by the first known public performance at a pep rally the next day.
A few days later, on Nov. 13, 1909, the University of Wisconsin band played the tune during a football game at Camp Randall - a 34-6 drubbing by the University of Minnesota.
"One of the things that makes it so extremely popular - the first four notes are so recognizable it almost makes a statement from the first time you hear it. It says everything in the first four notes," said Mike Leckrone.
Leckrone should know. As director of the UW Marching Band since 1969, Leckrone has conducted the song many times in many different arrangements, including swing, funk, Latin and a James Brown-like version. When asked to hazard a guess of just how often, he said "it boggles my mind."
It is great to see the tradition continue in Madison. GO BUCKY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Kraig Appleton overcomes adversity


Wisconsin wide receiver Kraig Appleton believes in the power of positive thinking.
The true freshman from East St. Louis, Ill., came to Wisconsin ranked by Scout.com as the 19th best receiver in the nation, but pulled both hamstrings in fall camp and found himself on the sidelines for much of the first half of the season as he struggled to learn the playbook. Frustrated, Appleton began to question whether redshirting might have been a wiser decision than trying to find playing time among an already deep wide receiver corps.
“It was that thought in the back of my mind making me feel that I wasted a year because the season was coming to the end,” Appleton said. “But I stuck with it and starting thinking positive about things, and then my time came and I was there to make the most of my opportunity.”
Appleton finally got his opportunity Saturday in Wisconsin’s 37-0 blowout over Purdue, in which he pulled in the first two catches of his career for a total of 15 yards. Appleton also made what would have been an acrobatic catch down the sidelines, but it was negated because his foot came down on the line.
Oozing with potential, Appleton almost didn’t have the opportunity to show his skills at all on the college level. Originally, his senior year curriculum at East St. Louis High School allowed him to graduate but was not sufficient for him to get into college because the school didn’t require the necessary classes.
But with the help of the Wisconsin coaching staff, he restructured his schedule to meet admission requirements and eventually graduated high school on the school’s honor roll. Appleton credits the concern and dedication of the coaches as a key reason for choosing Wisconsin, along with the team’s familial atmosphere that offered a positive change of scenery from the often unpleasant confines of East St. Louis.
“When you’re living in the environment that I come from, you have to have a strong mind about everything,” Appleton said. “Then once you get into another environment that’s a little bit better or a little bit more successful, then you can make the best of it.”
It is good to see a young Badger Football player give 100% to try yo better himself. I hop he has a great game versus Indiana this weekend. GO BUCKY!!!!!!!!!!!