Bielema excited for historic game

MADISON, Wis. -- The historical element to the Badger's upcoming game with Nebraska is certainly not lost on Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema. The Cornhuskers will travel to Madison for the first time as a member of the Big Ten, and that's something Bielema uses to motivate his players.

"I told our team yesterday 'How many times can you, as a player or a coach, say that you're going to be involved with the start of league play, in a new divisional alignment, against an opponent the caliber of Nebraska?'" Bielema said during his Monday press conference. "[It's] just an exciting time right now."

Bielema also said he tries to educate his players on the history of the Wisconsin football program, which helps put Saturday's matchup into perspective. The last time the Badgers played the Cornhuskers was 1974, and the Badgers have come a long way as a program since then. 

"Kids today are different," Bielema said. "The kids that we're recruiting know Wisconsin as being good for their entire lives. They don't know Wisconsin as anything but being good, so they don't remember the bad years."

Those "bad years" might seem like a faded memory to many Badger fans, as the team is currently ranked in the Top 10 in both the AP and coaches' polls. Bielema also said the Badger don't plan on leaving anytime soon.

"We've worked very hard to get ourselves in the position we're in today," Bielema said. "I saw in Brian's press release that this is the first time there's been two Top 10 teams playing [in Camp Randall] since 1962."

"Hey - we're here. We don't plan on leaving, so let's take advantage of some of the opportunities that come in front of us."

Injury Update

-- Senior tackle Josh Oglesby will practice all this week, after sitting out the South Dakota game with a knee injury. He's still listed with Rob Havenstein as co-starters on the depth chart for this week.

-- Safety Shelton Johnson should be back in practice on Tuesday or Wednesday after suffering a calf injury, and is still listed as the No. 1 strong safety. Bielema said Johnson would be able to play against Nebraska even without a lot of practice time this week, but he's comfortable starting sophomore Dezmen Southward if necessary.

-- Philip Welch will start kicking with the team on Wednesday, so he might be able to play against the Cornhuskers. For now, Kyle French and Alec Lerner are still the No. 1 kickers for the Badgers. 

-- Defensive ends Pat Muldoon and Konrad Zagzebski are full-go this week.

-- Kyle Costigan is out for the season, after suffering a stress fracture in his leg. 

News and Notes

-- Bielema once again implored Wisconsin students to arrive on time for the game on Saturday. 

"Camp Randall should be rocking. I'm excited to see that atmosphere. If we can get anywhere close to the Ohio State game a year ago, just the excitement, the energy, I know our kids really fed off it. We encourage everyone to get in their seats. It should be a great time," Bielema said. 

-- Bascom Hill is confirmed as the site for ESPN's College GameDay, according to a tweet from the university. 

-- Jared Abbrederis was the offense's MVP in week four, and Patrick Butrym took home the award on defense. Freshman linebacker Derek Landisch was recognized on special teams.

-- This week's Sports Illustrated will have an article on the Badgers' offensive line. Bielema said he originally wasn't going to let them do it, but then decided it would be better for the writers to come in during the week before South Dakota instead of the week before Nebraska. 

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For more Badger Football news, notes and discussion, follow John on Twitter (@JohnVeldhuis).

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