Revisiting Hyperbole: Looking back on preseason Wisconsin predictions

Mike McGinnis

So let's see if the hopes and dreams of August came together into something. Spoiler alert.

So you know what's the best part about making predictions? No one calls you on it. In the incessant need for content, people forget about the things you say. It can be a double-edged sword, that's for sure. But you know what? Only the people who actually make the predictions will remember what they were. And for entertainment purposes? Let's look back at the five hyperbolic predictions I made in August.

1. If he doesn't start, Tanner McEvoy's going to be responsible for 10 Badger touchdowns.

I figured Gary Andersen was a creative sort that was going to find a usage for Tanner McEvoy even if -- and I wonder just how much of a Pavlovian response this will get -- Joel Stave deserved to win and keep the starting job all year. McEvoy was just too good of an athlete not to see the field.

End result: Right idea, wrong side of the field. McEvoy was going to play, but how many of you saw him being an integral part of the secondary as the year ended? But there he was, playing giant-man safety. If I was going to give myself a grade on this one, I'd give it a C+.

2. Melvin Gordon and James White will each rush for over a thousand yards, but Corey Clement will lead the team in rushing touchdowns on much fewer carries.

I thought Corey Clement was going to be the bludgeon that would make the Badgers' running game work perfectly. I did not impugn the skills of the tag team of Gordon and White. They'll get theirs. I also said that Clement was going to get a touchdown for every six carries.

End result: I came the closest here. Gordon and White both ran for over 1,000 yards. Corey Clement wasn't exactly a slouch on the 66 carries he got (515 yards and seven touchdowns), but White had 13. Gordon had 12. This one gets a B.

3. Jared Abbrederis will be a Biletnikoff finalist.

Hey, I thought the passing game was going to improve! That's good. I thought it was going to be based on Robert Wheelwright doing stuff. That's bad. Abbrederis was going to threaten 70 grabs, 1,300 yards and 10 touchdowns. That was going to be enough to give him a trip to the awards ceremony.

End result: 73 grabs, 1,051 yards, seven scores. No one's going to call it a bad year by any stretch. Heck, I was even right on the number of grabs.

It wasn't even worth a semifinalist slot. D.

4. The Badgers will have some struggles covering the pass, but that won't matter.

I expected the defense to be attacking. It had bottled up the offense so badly in the spring and there were exciting moments with your Leon Jacobs of the world. I thought there would be ways to tilt the field. Big plays were coming. This defense was going to be great because of it.

End result: Seven fewer sacks than last year. Three more turnovers. The defense had some struggles covering the pass. But they played generally well. Sadly, it mattered. That's a complete whiff.

5. The Badgers are running the table.

Because they were. They totally were. Totally. I couldn't see them losing.

End result: Umm, they were 17 points away?

So what did I learn? Nothing. I'm probably going to do this again next August. I'm probably going to look bad in December. But that being said?

Corey Clement kind of seems like the truth, doesn't he?

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