The Wisconsin Badgers National Title hopes went up in smoke when they lost a last second heartbreaker to Michigan State back on October 22nd in East Lansing. The Badgers lost that game 37-31 on a last second hail mary pass that gave the Spartans the win.
This Saturday, the Badgers (10-2 overall, 6-2 Big Ten) get the opportunity to return the favor against the Spartans (10-2, 7-1) in the first ever Big Ten Conference title game in Indianapolis.
It’s not every day that you lose on a “Hail Mary” pass, but that’s what happened to the Badgers. That memory has lived with the them ever since. Saturday night, Wisconsin get’s a chance to forge new memories and hopefully good one’s this time.
The Badgers closed out Big Ten play with four straight wins, including Saturday’s 45-7 win over the Penn State Nittany Lions. Wisconsin totalled 450 yards of offense in the win. Running back Montee Ball tied a career-high with four touchdowns, doing it for the fourth time in his career and the second time this season.
Ball now has 34 touchdowns on the season, second-most in NCAA history, trailing only Barry Sanders’ 39 TD’s in 1988.
The Badgers claimed the Leaders Division by beating Penn State and while they’ve lost two straight against Michigan State, they finally get them outside of East Lansing. The Big Ten title game is a neutral site contest, which puts the Badgers in much better position to pull out the win.
It’s not the National Title game, but the winner this Saturday gets the Big Ten’s spot in the Rose Bowl, which is a pretty good consolation.