Joel Stave has thrown for 20 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions this season, but he’s missed more open receivers in the second half of the
season and the Wisconsin Badgers ability to throw the home run ball has disappeared down the stretch. Stave’s inability to make the big play late in the season cost the Badgers in their 31-24 loss to Penn State in the regular season finale on senior day at Camp Randall.
In turn, teams have crowded the line of scrimmage and made it more difficult for the Badgers to run the ball. The way to make them pay is hit the big pass down field. Wisconsin couldn’t do it late in the season.
South Carolina watches film and you can bet they’ll try to shut down the Badgers running attack as well, inviting the inconsistent Stave to beat them down field. Stave also needs time to stand in the pocket and deliver the long ball. Time to throw the ball also was tough to come by for Stave.
The Badgers are well aware of the problem. Following the loss to Penn State, coach Gary Anderson pulled no punches. He said Stave has to play better if the Badgers offense is going to work the way it’s supposed to.
Jared Abbrederis has been the number 1 target for Stave and he knows he and Stave need to connect today against the Gamecocks.
The 19th ranked Badgers have been labeled 2-point favorites and South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier has mentioned that fact to his team once or twice.