Badger Bits: Jon Budmayr, Bart Houston officially out for the season

Danny O'Brien has even more pressure on him to perform after Jon Budmayr and Bart Houston were ruled out for the season Wednesday.

In news surprising no one, Jon Budmayr will miss the 2012 season, Bret Bielema announced Wednesday. Budmayr is still dealing with nerve problems in his right arm, but now has to undergo hip surgery because of course he does. There's no word on what Budmayr did to his hip, but at this point it doesn't matter much. The odds that he would contribute meaningful minutes in his career were approaching zero even before this latest setback (man he has to be sick of that word). Here's hoping yet again for a speedy recovery for a guy that deserves much, much more for his constant efforts to get on the field.

Somewhat more surprising is the news that true freshman Bart Houston will be joining Budmayr in quarantine.

Incoming freshman quarterback Bart Houston was initially expected to miss the start of fall camp after recent surgery to remove a cyst in his throwing shoulder. Bielema said Houston had a recent appointment with doctors and "everything was ahead of schedule."

But the plan now is Houston will not resume throwing until next spring.

Houston is simultaneously ahead of schedule and out another 6-8ish months. No, that doesn't compute. In any case, Wisconsin's QB of the future will take a redshirt, which isn't the worst thing in the world.

Depth could be a concern. If Curt Phillips is still unusable coming off ACL surgery, that leaves the Badgers with just Danny O'Brien, Joel Stave and Joe Brennan. Thankfully, Stave seemed to improve in leaps over the course of Spring practice, and appears ready to challenge O'Brien in Fall camp. At the very least, he should be a functional backup during the season. The losses of Budmayr and Houston shouldn't devastate the Badgers, but the ice is certainly thin at the position.

JOEL STAVE PLAYS 'DROPS OF JUPITER' BY TRAIN AFTER THE JUMP

Did everyone miss this until now, or just me?

That's a great head of hair there, Joel. I really hope you find the love you deserve. AAAA AAa AAAaaaaAA AAAAaaaaaa.

Montee Ball apologizes profusely, probably too much, for his Mifflin incident. It could be worse, he could be Patrick Kane.

Early betting lines have set the over/under at 8.5 wins for the Badgers this season.

K.C. Joyner assesses Wisconsin's national title chances for ESPN Insider. Brian Bennett summarizes for those without shmancy subscriptions.

Jared Abbrederis makes the Johnny "The Jet" Rodgers Return Specialist Award preseason watch list.

RossWB at BHGP further condemns conference expansion, and expresses the same pangs of loss we feel for the Iowa-Wisconsin rivalry.

Everything descends from Hayden Fry, including Bret Bielema.

Michigan recruit takes wee little recruiting shenanigans just a bit too far.

Wrapping up: How to throw a perfect pass like Taylor Martinez. Oh god, my sides.

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