In most cases, these games against FCS opponents present a lose-lose situation for the FBS school.
But if that is the rule, consider UW's 70-3 victory over Austin Peay the exception.
The Badgers ran off a nearly flawless 60-minute performance Saturday and set a new school record for points scored in a game with 70.
The running backs were fast, the quarterbacks were accurate, the wide receivers were sure-handed and the defense was solid all-game long. Sure, it was Austin Peay, but the Badgers did everything they were supposed to do against the opponent they were playing Saturday and they did it well.
James White had a ridiculous breakout performance as he ran for 145 yards and four touchdowns on just 11 carries. That's an average of 13.2 yards per carry for those scoring at home. His 66-yard touchdown run in the second quarter certainly aided those numbers.
John Clay still received the most carries as he ran for 118 yards and a score on 15 rushing attempts. Montee Ball added 65 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries. Overall, UW ran for 346 yards and seven touchdowns on the day.
Wisconsin's passing game was in sync all day long as well. Scott Tolzien threw for 217 yards and three touchdowns while completing 15-of-17 passes. Freshman backup Jon Budmayr saw his first playing time as a Badger and looked sharp as he completed 6-of-7 passes. His only incompletion was a ball he smartly threw away.
If there were any negatives at all it was that the defense still had a small case of the missed tackles and showed poor technique at times. But considering that the Governors never even got inside the red zone and only put up three points because of a 51-yard field goal, it's hard to say the unit had a bad game.
This is the fifth time in five years the Badgers have played an FCS opponent, but it's the first time one could make the argument that it was a good idea.
With injuries mounting and mistakes from the previous three games looming, the Badgers needed a cupcake like Austin Peay to get well and provide a boost of confidence. That's exactly what happened Saturday. Wisconsin ran up the score and rested their starters in preparation for the Big Ten season starting next week.
The only bad news? Michigan State did the same thing yesterday as they beat Northern Colorado 45-7.
Regardless, the Badgers did what they were supposed to do Saturday. No matter what your feelings are about the schedule, Wisconsin played and beat Austin Peay in the best possible way it could.