College Football News Preview 2020: Wisconsin Badgers

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

College Football News Preview 2020: Wisconsin Badgers

Wisconsin

College Football News Preview 2020: Wisconsin Badgers

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College Football News Preview 2020: Wisconsin Badgers Keys To The Season

Biggest Key To The Wisconsin Badgers Offense

Seriously, Wisconsin … DON’T TURN THE BALL OVER. Most good programs will screw up with a turnover, and then life goes on. Wisconsin might be able to get by a Purdue or a Northwestern – at least last year – after giving it up a few times, but it almost never gets beaten by anyone outside of the elite if it doesn’t screw it up.

Losing twice to Ohio State is losing twice to Ohio State – no big whoop. But the Badgers controlled Illinois, had the thing in hand, and blew it with two bad late turnovers and with three in all.

Watch the Rose Bowl against Oregon, and outside of the four giveaways, try to figure out how Wisconsin possibly gacked that thing away.

The program lost nine games over the last two seasons – it was -15 in turnover margin in those nine. In the 18 wins over the last two years, it was +16, finishing tied for last in the nation in lost fumbles in 2019.

Biggest Key To The Wisconsin Badgers Defense

Find the pass rushers to replace Zach Baun and Chris Orr. The defense is going to be good no matter what, but generating a pass rush isn’t a given.

The Badgers finished fifth in the nation in sacks, with the 51 being even more impressive considering the defense was only on the field for almost 25 minutes per game. The year before, though, getting to the quarterback was an issue, with the Badgers generating just 19, with almost all of them in four games.

In 2017, the defense came up with 42 sacks with the production coming from several spots, and in 2016 it came up with 34, mostly helped by that TJ Watt guy.

The improved pass rush last season was a massive reason why the defense led the nation in third down conversion stops. Without Baun and Orr, the Badgers have to quickly figure out who can be the next statistical star.

Outside of projected starting linebackers Noah Burks and Izayah Green-May …

Key Wisconsin Badgers Player To A Successful Season

PK Collin Larsh, Jr.
And if it’s not Larsh, someone who can nail every key field goal.

2017 was the only season in the last five with a relatively air-tight Badger kicking game – Rafael Gaglianone nailed 16-of-18 field goals, and neither miss mattered. Last year, the kickers went 14-of-21. As long as Larsh nails the big ones in the key games, the Badgers will be fine.

No, Wisconsin didn’t lose to Illinois and Oregon because of the kicking game, but it sure didn’t help that Larsh missed a 47-yarder in the Rose Bowl and a 37-yarder against the Illini – the Badgers lost both games by a point.

Key Game To The Wisconsin Badgers Season

at Iowa, Nov. 28
The Minnesota game is early this year. The battle for the Paul Bunyan Axe normally ends the regular season, but it’s on October 10th this time around and it’s in Madison. Most likely, the showdown against the Hawkeyes will end up deciding the West.

Last year the Badgers were able to get by the Gophers on the road to get to the Big Ten title game. This time, they might have to do it in Iowa City in an attempt to win for the sixth time in seven games in the series.
Wisconsin Badgers Schedule Breakdown & Analysis

2019 Wisconsin Fun Stats

– 1st Quarter Scoring: Wisconsin 103 – Opponents 30
– Time of Possession: Wisconsin 35:38 – Opponents 24:22
– Average Rushing Yards Per Game: Wisconsin 233.1 – Opponents 99.8

NEXT: College Football News Preview 2020: Wisconsin Badgers Win Total Prediction, What Will Happen

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