The first half wasn't entirely pretty, but Wisconsin is nevertheless pitching a shutout two quarters into the 2013 college football season. A Joel Stave 4-yard scramble put the Badgers on the board first, before a 21-yard Kyle French field goal and a 70-yard rush by Melvin Gordon got UW to 17.
UMass, in its first full season as a FBS program, was never able to move the ball downfield. Wisconsin, though, still has yet to pull away. Stave tossed one interception one a wildly overthrown pass that was picked in the red zone, and an errant throw to Jared Abbrederis also left UW's No. 1 receiver vulnerable to a big hit from UMass defenders. Abbrederis was down on the field for a bit, but returned a few players later.
Stave entered the break 4-of-11 for 36 yards and the touchdown.
Gordon's score was the highlight of the first half, as two excellent blocks down the right side of the line created a hole, with fullback Derek Watt sealing the way for Gordon to scamper down the right sideline. James White has also been sharp as Wisconsin's starting running back, gaining 89 yards on nine carries (9.9 yards per). Gordon entered the half with 127 yards on 11 carries (11.5 yards per) and the one touchdown.
6 - Number of running plays 10 yards or more in first half
2 - Number of passing plays 10 yards or more in first half
4 - Penalties against UMass' offense in first half (three false starts, one delay of game)
4 - Number of Badgers who have caught a pass in first half
More from Bucky's 5th Quarter:
- B5Q Weekly: Week 1 Edition
- New menu options come to Camp Randall Stadium
- Fifth Quarter Consensus: Badgers open Andersen era with win over Minutemen
- Ask B5Q: Favorite section of Camp Randall Stadium?
- B5Q Season Prediction Roundtable: Picks, best- and worst-case scenarios for Wisconsin
- Welcoming back Joel Stave as Wisconsin's starting quarterback