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Badger Bits: Brutal blow for OB

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I had planned to write about how a great weekend at the East-West Shrine Game likely pushed former Wisconsin Badger O'Brien Schofield into the second round of this spring's NFL Draft, but that hope took a turn for the worst Monday in Mobile, Ala. when Schofield suffered an ACL tear in his left knee in a Senior Bowl practice.

It's a horrible and unfair blow to a great kid and one of the hardest working players the UW football program has ever seen.

The injury came just two days after being named the defensive MVP at the East-West Shrine Game, where many reports indicated Schofield had made very impressive strides after being switched to outside linebacker at the start of Shrine Game practices. One Bleacher Report recap said:

One of the most impressive players on the field today, Schofield made a seamless transition from defensive end to linebacker and was all over the field. He held up well in coverage and has enough speed to stay on tight ends and running backs. He had a brilliant read that allowed him to zip across the field and make an early interception. Schofield entered the game a fourth or fifth round prospect, but considering how impressive he was, he could end up going in the second round.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Jeff Potrykus writes about the injury here and offers a very nice personal note on Schofield here. Ironically, Schofield was practicing with defensive ends ends when the injury occurred.

Now on to some basketball notes:

  • Despite two sub-par performances at home this week, the Badgers moved up to No. 16 in both major polls this week.
  • The Bracketologists aren't letting them off so easy, however. ESPN's Joe Lunardi (who is one of the few national writers who gives UW the credit it deserves) dropped the Badgers down to a No. 4 seed. SBNation's Bracketology also has UW as a No. 4 seed. Both brackets have the Badgers playing in Spokane, Wash. for the first and second rounds.
  • As we have noted here before, the Bradley Center in Milwaukee is hosting first and second round games. That means there is a possibility of a Milwaukee to St. Louis to Indianapolis road to the Final Four. A number of Big Ten teams, including Wisconsin, would love that road. However, Dave Heller at the Journal Sentinel notes that UW would have to be playing in a 1-16, 2-15, 7-10, or 8-9 game if they want to play in Milwaukee. I'm going to do a little research and make sure that is true, but when UW was a No. 2 seed in 2007 it opened up the NCAA Tournament at the United Center in Chicago and the three other games were indeed the 1-16, 7-10 and 8-9 games.