So, now that Wisconsin apparently has it's man for the offensive coordinator in Andy Ludwig, it's time to delve into the man's history a bit, after all you can't know where you are going if you don't know where you've been, right? We gave you a glimpse at the past few years earlier, however he has an extensive history as an OC behind him, 15 years to be exact. That gives us a pretty good glimpse of what his offenses can truly do. From the good, to the bad, and well there really isn't a lot of ugly to be honest.
We've decided to take a trip for you in the way…. way back machine to give you a look at what the true numbers, not just someone's baseless opinion is of Ludwig, tell us about the newest Wisconsin OC.
Remember, numbers never lie and to prove it we're going to start by showing you how dynamic or not dynamic Ludwig's offenses have been throughout the years.
|Year||Points Per Game||School|
|2011||29.8||San Diego State|
Now that we have the numbers, what does that tell us. One of the more interesting things is looking at the trends of his offenses. While average 29.7 points per game over his 15 year career is pretty damn good it's interesting to look at what's behind some of the bigger numbers.
In 1999 and 2001 the Fresno State Bulldogs put up some crazy offensive point totals, but behind those numbers are also very quality quarterbacks in Billy Volek and David Carr. What you'll also notice is those numbers also coincide with an ability of the offense to actually run the football. That's a good sign for Badgers fans everywhere.
So, just how good have Ludwig coached offenses been? Well, we'll let you be the judge based off the numbers of once again. Up first is a look at the yearly rushing and passing stats.
|Yearly Rushing Stats|
Alright, so those numbers aren't bad at all and it should more than ease the worries of the dreaded "spread" coming to Wisconsin. Clearly Ludwig's offense has a big time emphasis on the run. I mean, his offenses only ran the ball fewer than 400 times in a season once and even in that year they ran the ball more than they threw it. In fact, as you'll see with the next chart, there's only one season where his offenses passed the ball more than they ran it and that was a very special season in 2001 with a QB by the name of David Carr at the helm.
|Yearly Passing Stats|
Looking at the passing numbers the one thing that you really notice is how efficient his teams are in the passing game. That fits with what Wisconsin does offensively. If you marry that with the philosophy that Andersen spoke of you can clearly see that the QB at Wisconsin is going to be more than just a simple game manager.
The biggest winner could be Joel Stave with this hire. He's an efficient player and someone that gained a ton of experience in a short amount of time as a starter this season. It will be really interesting to see what happens between Bart Houston and him and it's probably the biggest offseason storyline to watch on the field.
We told you we'd be giving you a thorough breakdown here, and we're about to give you just that as we break down the stats even further to give you an idea of how players grow and how seasons play out at the individual level.
|2000||Josh Levi||397||2||4.3||*Ward, Gaines, Tillman all split carries w/ Levi & Injuries hit RB corp|
|2008||Matt Asiata||707||12||4.8||*near even split w/ Mack for 1,248yds total|
|2009||Shane Vereen||952||12||5.2||*split w/ Jhavid Best for 1,819yds total|
What should you take away from these individual stats? Well, for one, when Ludwig has talent at a specific position he finds the best way to use that talent, just look to the 2009 season when Shane Vereen and Jhavid Best combined for a ridiculous 1,819 yards.
Also you should note that 9 of 15 years a player rushed for 1,000 yards, in 8 of 15 years the leading rusher averaged better than 5 yards a carry and had double digit touchdowns.
It all goes to show you that this coach loves to run the football and it also shows that when a running back is around and healthy for more than a year he gets better. Now, if you take the stats of running backs at schools that don't have the talent (Yes, Oregon wasn't Oregon yet when Ludwig was there) that Wisconsin has you can only imagine the possibilities.
Especially if they are going to continue to run the football at a 476 carry a year clip. It's safe to say the UW isn't going to have issues running for a ton of yards, in fact it could be really scary to see what Wisconsin can do with a guy like this at the helm of the offense.
What about the passing game? Well, the news gets interesting for Wisconsin in this area to say the least.
|1998||Billy Volek (11)||1,973||10TD/3INT||57.8%|
|1999||Billy Volek (13)||2,559||30TD/3INT||66.2%|
|2000||David Carr (12)||2,729||23TD/12INT||62.0%|
|2001||David Carr (14)||4,839||46TD/9INT||64.5%|
|2002||Jason Fife (13)||2,752||24TD/10INT||51.7%|
|2003||Kellen Clemens (13)||2,400||18TD/9INT||59.8%|
|2004||Kellen Clemens (11)||2,548||22TD/10INT||59.9%|
|2005||Brian Johnson (10)||2,892||18TD/7INT||63.6%|
|2006||Brett Ratliff (13)||2,796||23TD/9INT||58.3%|
|2007||Brian Johnson (11)||1,847||11TD/10INT||66.5%|
|2008||Brian Johnson (13)||2,972||27TD/9INT||68.0%|
|2009||Kevin Riley (13)||2,850||18TD/8INT||54.7%|
|2010||Kevin Riley (8)||1,409||13TD/6INT||60.0%|
|2011||Ryan Lindley (13)||3,153||23TD/8INT||53.0%|
|2012||Ryan Katz (8)||1,348||13TD/4INT||60.7%|
Why did I say this is where things get interesting before? That's because you'll notice something that doesn't happen very often in the Badger offense. It's either really heavy on the run and light on the pass or just plain bad in the past. The only exception to that rule was the 2011 season when you had Russell Wilson and Montee Ball and an offense that was literally 1.3 yards a game difference between the passing and rushing game.
It's also exciting to note that 11 of 15 QB's passed for more than 2,000 yards – something that doesn't happen at Wisconsin all that often. We also see that Ludwig's QB's are efficient more often than not, recording a 60% completion rate or better in 8 of 15 years (two more years were just under a degree off of 60% as well). Perhaps the best indication of what Ludwig asks his QB's to do is the fact that not a single one of his QB's had more INT's than TD's in a season and only 4 of 15 years did a QB have double digit INT's on the year.
Wisconsin fans have long suffered through a series of decent, but not great QB's from Darrell Bevel to Jim Sorgi, Brooks Bollinger and even Scott Tolzien it hasn't exactly been a picture of awesomeness in Madison.
With Ludwig's west coast connections and ability to work with the likes of Billy Volek, David Carr, Brian Johnson, and Ryan Lindley you have to like Wisconsin's chances of upping the recruiting of QB's in the years to come.
Overall the numbers tell a story that Wisconsin fans should like. The only drawback could be the migratory nature of his career, but if you look into that it's also easy to see that a lot of it was movement because of other coaching changes more than anything else going on.
As the cliche goes, only time will tell, but as we sit here in the dead of Winter you've got to like the prospects of a coach that fits what Wisconsin's identity is and could even add a bit more to the mix as well.