The Wisconsin Badgers are 12-0 for the first time in school history, following Saturday’s 31-0 shutout win over the Minnesota Gophers in Minneapolis. The win is the 14th straight for the Badgers in the series and keeps Paul Bunyan’s Axe in Madison for at least another season.
Paul Chryst improved to 22-4 in Big Ten play and 33-6 overall at Wisconsin (12-0, 9-0 Big Ten).
Wisconsin’s win, along with a pair of losses from No. 1 Alabama on Saturday and No. 2 Miami on Friday, should propel the Badgers into the top four when the College Football Playoff rankings come out on Tuesday night. Wisconsin was fifth in the rankings going into Saturday’s win against Minnesota.
The Badgers will most likely secure a bid in the four-team College Football Playoffs if they knock off Ohio State in this Saturday’s Big Ten title game in Indianapolis. The Buckeyes (10-2, 8-1) knocked off Michigan 31-20 this past weekend.
The Gophers finished 2-7 in the Big Ten and 5-7 overall in P.J. Fleck’s first season.
The Badger defense posted its first shutout since a 37-0 win over Rutgers on Nov. 1, 2014. The Gophers didn’t even pick up a first down until 41 seconds left in the first half.
The Gophers finished with just 133 total yards on 48 plays, an average of 2.8 yards per play.
Alex Hornibrook finished 15 of 19 for 151 yards and three touchdowns in the victory, while freshman running back Jonathan Taylor finished with 20 carries for 149 yards and a touchdown, giving him 1,806 yards rushing for the season. That’s third all time for FBS freshmen. Wisconsin’s Ron Dayne finished with 1,863 yards and Adrian Peterson finished with 1,925 yards in his first season.
Wisconsin improved its record against Minnesota to 60-59-8, taking the lead in the team’s all-time series for the first time in the history of a rivalry that dates to 1890.