When Wisconsin took care of Nebraska 70-31 in the Big Ten title game December 1st, little did we know what the 2013 Rose Bowl would like for the Badgers. Three days after punching a third straight ticket to Pasadena, Wisconsin found themselves without a coach as Bret Bielema bolted Madison for Arkansas. With no coach to lead the program, the King of the Rose Bowl, Barry Alvarez, stepped up to the plate and will lead the Badgers against #6 Stanford today in the 99th edition of the Rose Bowl.
Alverez led Wisconsin to Rose Bowl victories in 1994, 1999, and 2000 during his 16-years as Head Coach of the Badgers. It has been 7-years since Alvarez last coached a game for Wisconsin, a 24-10 victory over Auburn in the Capital One Bowl. In the 11-bowls Barry coached the Badgers, Wisconsin was 8-3 with a 3-0 mark in the Rose Bowl. Alvarez doesn’t believe a lot has changed since he last put on the head set…
Alvarez will try to snap Wisconsin’s losing streak in Pasadena. The Badgers have played in the last two Rose Bowl games, loses to TCU 21-19 in 2011 and Oregon 45-38 in 2012. A win could be a valuable lesson for this team according to Alvarez considering the adversity they have faced this season.
Stanford will be no easy task for the Badgers. The Cardinal enter the contest 11-2 on the season ranked 6th in the BCS and 8th in both the AP and Coaches Poll. Like Wisconsin, they feature one of the nation’s top running backs in Stepfan Taylor. Taylor has compiled 1442-yards and 12-tds this season for the Cardinal. Also, points could be hard to come by today as both teams rank in the top-20 in the country in points allowed; Stanford-12th (17.5) and Wisconsin-17th (19.1).
Wisconsin and Stanford met the last time Alvarez coached the Badgers in the Rose Bowl in 2000. The Badgers won that game 17-9. Today’s kickoff is slated for around 4:00.