For the 2010 edition of Wisconsin Badgers football, there are 16 returning starters, ten of those on the offensive side of the ball. So while freshmen probably will not have many chances to contribute on the offensive side of the ball, there are definitely opportunities for defensive freshmen to have a role this season if they play well in camp. The most opportunities for rookies to find playing time this year are probably at the defensive line positions. Defensive tackle Beau Allen is one freshman whose goal is to earn some playing time this season. Also, Bret Bielema thinks Kyle Costigan is the strongest freshman ever at Wisconsin and could possibly get time at defensive tackle this season.
Defensive line is easily the most likely position to see true freshmen on the field this year, but there are some opportunities elsewhere. RB James White could get a chance to serve as a change-of-pace speed back, but the presence of three other solid running backs makes this unlikely. TE Sherard Cadogan, LB Cameron Ontko, S Michael Trotter, CB Peniel Jean, and LB Josh Harrison are other freshman to watch. While true freshmen don't often have very big roles on Wisconsin football teams, expect there to be players like Chris Borland and Travis Frederick who pleasantly surprise you this upcoming season.
More Badger Bits after the jump; the review of the 2009 football season continues with Wisconsin vs. Michigan State.
Wisconsin opened the 2009 Big Ten season with a home game against Michigan State. The Badgers wanted to remain undefeated and get some revenge after blowing an 11 point 4th quarter lead against the Spartans in 2008.
Michigan St. Spartans (1-2) at Wisconsin Badgers (3-0), September 26, 2009 - In this game, it was Garrett Graham's world and Michigan State was just living in it. Graham caught three of Scott Tolzien's four touchdown passes. This game also proved to be Tolzien's breakout performance; he was 19 of 31 for 243 yards, and he even tacked on 20 rushing yards. Speaking of rushing yards, John Clay had 142 of those and a touchdown. Wisconsin's offense could not be stopped at all by the Spartans, and the Badgers did a pretty good job defensively (forced 4 turnovers) besides a couple of lapses at the very end of the contest. Wisconsin came away with a 38-30 win to go to 4-0 on the year, and you could now tell that this team was for real.
Adam Rittenberg says that Wisconsin is the Big Ten's hottest team. He also says we are number 3 in the Big Ten preseason rankings. Finally, check out what he thinks we should look for as the Badgers open camp.
A very thorough article by Wes Bunting on Wisconsin's 2011 NFL Draft prospects.
Our injured Badgers are reportedly on the fast road to recovery.
Tune your television to the Big Ten Network because it's Wisconsin Week.
Mike Lucas, Tom Oates, and Tom Mulhern discuss the popular topic of 'can Wisconsin fulfill expectations?'