Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Badgers prepare for Iowa

In head coach Bret Bielema's weekly news conference Monday, he addressed some of the keys in the victory over  No. 1  Ohio State, as well the team's preparation for this week's game, and battle for the Heartland Trophy against Iowa.
Bielema began press conference by giving thanks to those who support the team off the field.
"I just wanna say thanks to all the people who were in Camp Randall on Saturday, especially our student section," Bielema said. "I thought, coming out of the tunnel, there was a huge difference, and I really thought they [the fans] were into it the whole game, and the way we started it you'd think to believe it had an effect on our players as well."
Bielema also gave recognition to his players.
"In that game you can't give enough recognition to guys that made things happen."
The Badgers' offensive MVP honors went to junior running back John Clay and freshman running back James White. This dynamic duo of power and speed combined for 179 rushing yards and three touchdowns against a team who had not allowed a 100-yard rusher in 29 games.  The offensive line also received recognition for this dominant running performance, especially senior tackle Gabe Carimi and senior guard John Moffitt.
The Badgers' defensive MVP was spread around as well.
 Senior linebacker Blake Sorensen was one who received high regards. Sorensen totaled up ten tackles for the Badgers, as well as an interception to all but end the game.
Junior defensive end J.J. Watt also received recognition. Watt was in quarterback Terrelle Pryor's face all night, and had four tackles, three of which were for loss, including a pair of sacks.
The last defensive MVP was junior cornerback Antonio Fenelus.  Fenelus played solid coverage all night, breaking up a pass and recording six tackles.
The special teams MVP this week went to return man David Gilreath, who electrified the Camp Randall crowd, returning the opening kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown. Gilreath also earned conference honors as special teams player of the week.
Bielema realizes though that the team's focus now needs to be on the next oponent at hand.
"[Iowa is] a very talented football team that is playing very, very well," Bielema said. "A lot of the same keys to victory against Ohio State, at least offensively, will be very, very similar."
 Iowa, 5-1 iscurrently ranked No. 15 in the BCS standings, and is coming off a 38-28 victory over Michigan. In that game, senior quarterback Ricky Stanzi completed 17 of 24 passes for 248 yards and three touchdowns, all of them to senior wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos. Despite this vaunted pass offense, Bielema expects to see a strong dosage of the run game from Iowa.  This mostly comes from the success of sophomore running back Adam Robinson, who averages 4.8 yard per carry and has eight touchdowns.
This game between the Badgers and the Hawkeyes will be their 86th meeting, with Iowa leading the series just slightly, 42-41-2. But good news for Badger fans. Wisconsin has won seven of the last 13 meetings.  This game will be just as big for the Badgers as the game against Ohio State because if the Badgers lose, they can likely say goodbye to a possible BCS bowl and a chance at a Big Ten conference title.
Lets hope Bucky can keep it rolling.  GO BUCKY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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