The Wisconsin Badgers continued their early season trend by scoring whopping 24 points in the second quarter, on
their way to a 31-10 victory over the Arizona Wildcats. Just like their first three victories, the Badgers stumbled out
of the gate on Saturday. Brooks Bollinger and the rest of the Badger offense were totally out of sync, but eventually
got on track at the start of the second quarter.
The Badgers started the scoring on a 6-yard run by tailback Anthony Davis to make it a 7-0 game. Sophomore
Darrin Charles made a spectacular 25-yard catch on the drive, despite getting hammered by two defenders, to take
the Badgers to the one-yard line. After an illegal procedure moved the offense to the 6, Davis took the hand off, and
followed freshman fullback Matt Bernstein into the end zone.
After the defense shut down the Wildcats next series, the Badgers came up with a huge play that set the tone for
the day. With Arizona punter Danny Baugher standing on his own 8-yard line, linebacker Alex Lewis burst through
the middle and blocked the punt, giving the Badgers the ball on the 3-yard line. Davis then followed Bernstein in for
the touchdown to make it 14-0 with 13:45 left in the second quarter.
The Badger defense gave up a few yards on the next drive, but again the Wildcats offense stalled forcing them to
punt. With the Badgers taking over at the 4-yard line, Davis broke off a 29-yard run to give the offense some
breathing room. Then, on a third and 11 from the 17, Bollinger hooked up with freshman sensation Jonathan Orr to
make it 21-0. Orr has shown he can be a big-time playmaker, and the Badgers will have to get the ball in his hands
even more in the coming weeks.
Freshman safety Jim Leonhard slipped several tackles to gain 31 yards on a punt return, to put the Badgers in great
field position. Kicker Scott Campbell tacked on a 32-yard field goal to make it a 24-0 lead at the half.
The Badgers had great coverage on the kick to start the second half, and the Wildcats had to start at the 6-yard
line. Facing 3rd and 5 from the 11, Wildcats quarterback Jason Johnson completed a 9-yard pass to Andrae
Thurman for a first down at the 20. Then tailback Clarence Farmer took a handoff and gashed the Badger defense for
a 70-yard touchdown to make it 24-7.
The Badgers offense answered with a 15 play, 80-yard drive that ended with a Bollinger sneak from 1-yard out.
This drive would have ended early if it weren’t for the huge 3rd down reception by freshman Brandon Williams. On
3rd and 10, Bollinger hit Williams on an 8-yard pass, and the 165-pounder fought through two defenders to get the
With the Badgers leading 31-7, the Wildcats could only add one more field goal to make the final score 31-10.
This victory was just what the doctor ordered.
After beginning the season 5-0, the Badgers will have a bye week before they face 15th ranked Penn State in the
Big Ten opener. The Badgers looked inconsistent in their first four games, but finally put together a complete game
against a tough Pac Ten team. Penn State looks to be a much stiffer test after they dismantled perennial power
Nebraska just last week.
The Badgers are a decent team, and starting 5-0 will give this young team some confidence heading into the Big
Ten. The young receivers have proven they can come up with some big plays, and if the line gives Bollinger time, this
offense could be deadly. The defense has given up too much yardage, but they have somehow kept opponents
scoring to a minimum.
If the Badgers keep improving there’s no telling where this team could go. Getting out of the gate at 5-0 is a good
start, but the Big Ten presents a big challenge for this young team.
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