Fanshots

NJ.com: Goldy Gopher is the Big Ten's best mascot because... 'Caddyshack'?

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Sure, this is a Wisconsin blog, and we're supposed to have this reaction. But Goldy Gopher is the Big Ten's best mascot? Really? Bucky is ranked 10th out of 11 mascots here, which doesn't even really matter much. I'm just trying to figure out how an "adorable" mascot that reminds someone of a 34-year-old movie garners the top spot. And I like "Caddyshack," probably even more than the average fellow. Like all things wonky from Jersey, I blame Julie Hermann.

NRG Stadium putting down turf for Wisconsin-LSU

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Here's our built-in excuse in the event things don't go well in Houston: it was the damn turf! Sarcasm aside, this makes sense considering how much the Texans (the building's main occupants) have invested in the field. It is kinda weird they play two days before the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff and then their next game (the regular-season opener) doesn't come until Sept. 7, but again, this is understandable.

Wisconsin backs out of home-and-home with Washington

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Buried in a release from Washington announcing a pair of home-and-homes with BYU and Michigan is the fact that Wisconsin has backed out of its own series with the "other" UW. The statement reads: "... due to conflicts with its Big Ten Conference schedule, Wisconsin was forced to cancel its two games with the Huskies, previously scheduled for 2018 and 2021." As Jeff Potrykus of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel points out, the Badgers have four Big Ten home games in 2018 and five in 2021.

Melvin Gordon makes CBS Sports' All-American team

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CBS Sports released its preseason All-American list Wednesday, including Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon as one of two running backs alongside Georgia's Todd Gurley. Only a first team was released, so Gordon is the only Badgers representative. The other Big Ten players are Iowa offensive tackle Brandon Scherff, Ohio State defensive tackle Michael Bennett and Iowa defensive tackle Carl Davis.

Oh crap, your son has to block J.J. Watt

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This J.J. Watt clip from HBO's "Hard Knocks" is awesome. The Atlanta Falcons are featured this season, and their scrimmage against the Houston Texans brought them face-to-face with J.J. Watt. The clip begins with Bruce Matthews, a Hall of Famer who's son is Falcons left tackle Jake Matthews, talking to Atlanta offensive line coach Mike Tice (and father of Badger fan favorite Nate Tice). The ensuing voiceover is awesome; by highlighting the football dads first, the transition to Watt is essentially, "Oh, man. Your son's screwed!" And indeed, Watt looks pretty damn unblockable in the clip.

Braxton Miller injury makes UW Big Ten favorite

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So Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller is out for the season, according to ESPN's Brett McMurphy. Miller reinjured his throwing shoulder in practice Monday, and the effects on the college football world are felt everywhere from the Big Ten picture to the Heisman Trophy race. Wisconsin stands to benefit from both (Melvin Gordon should get even more attention among the conference's top players), and according to PredictionMachine.com (via the USA TODAY link above) the Badgers are now favored in every game (including the opener vs. LSU and in a Big Ten Championship matchup vs. Michigan State). PredictionMachine runs 50,000 simulations of the college football season, and in this instance, the Badgers replace Ohio State in the College Football Playoff.

Watch News8000's great HS football season preview

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If you're into Wisconsin high school sports, this hourlong video preview from News 8 in La Crosse will get you pretty jazzed up. It'll also get you pretty well-informed. A win-win.

Hawaii AD: Warriors football in danger of "going away"

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This is a stunner: Hawaii athletic director Ben Jay told the university's Board of Regetns on Monday that the football program could be going away. The university has operated under a budget deficit during 11 of the past 13 years, and is on the way to making that 12 of 14 this year. On the football field, the Warriors haven't had a winning season since 2010 and have also won just four games over the past two seasons. There's also a Wisconsin connection here: the Badgers are scheduled to host Hawaii in 2015, travel there in 2021 and play another in Madison in 2022.

Former Wisconsin target Joe Mixon suspended for year by Oklahoma

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Former Wisconsin target and current Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon was suspended for a year by the Sooners on Monday. After he was arraigned at the the Cleveland County Courthouse in Oklahoma City, the team issued the statement on Mixon, who allegedly physically assaulted a female OU student at a bar on July 25.

Former Badgers Bryce Gilbert, Brock DeCicco land at IUP

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Bryce Gilbert was one of Wisconsin's more surprising departures when the fall roster was announced back in July. It turns out he, as well as former UW tight end Brock DeCicco, have since enrolled at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania. According to the article linked above -- which is the first we've heard of the destinations for Gilbert and DeCicco -- both players are getting first-team reps with the Crimson Hawks.

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