Wisconsin vs. Ohio State: Game Day Preview

Well, it's finally here – game day against Ohio State so let's get right down to the info you'll need to know heading into this afternoon's matchup! 


Who: No. 6 Ohio State at Wisconsin
Where: Camp Randall – Madison, WI
Series Record: 54-18-5
Last Meeting: 2011 (33-29 Ohio State Win)

Statistical Breakdown:

Category Wisconsin NCAA Rank B1G Rank   Ohio State NCAA Rank B1G Rank
Scoring Offense 29.5 58th 6th   39.9 12th 1st
Total Offense 385.6 78th 7th   445.3 35th 2nd
Rushing Offense 218.8 17th 4th   256.1 8th 2nd
Passing Offense 166.8 108th 11th   189.2 T-98th 7th
Scoring Defense 17.2 12th 2nd   23.9 T-41st 7th
Total Defense 309.6 15th 3rd   367.6 39th 7th
Rushing Defense 103.4 13th 1st   107.9 16th 2nd
Passing Defense 206.2 34th 7th   259.7 97th 11th

How Wisconsin Wins:
The Badgers need to get the running game going for sure, that's the obvious answer, but take a look at the stats and it's the passing game that will be the key for Wisconsin today. It may not be as big as the numbers they put up rushing, but they are going up against a passing defense that's 11th in the Big Ten, giving up over 250 yards a game.  They are also 11th in just Big Ten games against the pass. Curt Phillips needs to use his legs a bit to set up some play action and get Jared Abbrederis and Jacob Pederson into the game early. 

If they can get even 175 yards passing and a TD or two in that facet of the game it'll be a good day for the Badgers offense. It's hard to see the Badgers winning a game completely based off the run against a defense that's only giving up 101 yards a game on the ground in conference play. 

How Ohio State Wins:
The Buckeyes need to put Curt Phillips under pressure early and see how he reacts to it. If they can force some turnovers early and get Braxton Miller going that'll be huge towards winning this football game. However, that's easier said than done against a defense that is 1st against the run in the Big Ten and in the Top 15 nationally. However, if your Ohio State it's all about your best playmaker getting it done and that's Miller. He's capable of doing it through the air too and that may be the area to watch the most as Corey "Philly" Brown and Devin Smith are good enough to make some big plays against a secondary that's given up a few of them all season long. 


- Chris Borland is a game time decision, if he can't go expect Marcus Trotter to get his 1st career start and that's something to really keep an eye on today.

- Wisconsin is 10-0 in November games since 2005 and that can't be overlooked at all, especially playing a late afternoon game in Camp Randall. They've outscored opponents 474-152 in those November games.

- The Badgers have the most wins of any Big Ten team over Ohio State since 2005 with 5, but are just 5-6 in those games including that crazy loss last season.

- Montee Ball needs 1 rushing TD to break Ron Dayne's career Big Ten TD record and 2 overall TD's to break Travis Prentice's career FBS TD record – so be on record breaking lookout on Senior Day.

- 3rd downs will be key to say the least. Wisconsin is only converting 35% of their attempts, but opponents are worse, only converting on 31% of 3rd down opportunities this season. 


For full coverage in-game make sure to follow us on Twitter @MTBadgers.

Andrew Coppens

About Andrew Coppens

Andy is a member of the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) and has been covering college football for nearly half a decade. He is the Managing Editor of MadTownBadgers.com and associate editor of Bloguin's World Cup site, 32flags.com