Barring a seemingly miraculous turn of events, this is a season where the Badgers aren't going to meet expectations. And if you're like me, you're looking for a table to flip over. Only you don't have a table to flip over. So you go to a blog. You desire vengeance. You desire your pound of flesh!
You want Bret Bielema's head on a pike!
Okay, maybe you don't want his head on a pike. But you're already ready to throw him overboard. I know you are.
But I am a man of science. And has the distance has receded the table flipping desires in my lizard brain? I've found myself with a need, nay a desire to walk the narrative back on our fearless leader. Because when a fan base is starting the 'Maybe We Need a New Coach' bandwagon after a five-game valley? Someone's got to attempt to slow that roll.
And I will be that man. Because there are clear, logical and necessary reasons as to why you need to relax regarding Bielema. And I share that now.
1) Didn't we all agree that Nebraska was going to win anyway?
Look at the B5Q consensus, I thought the Badgers were going to lose by seven. And I was one of the nicer ones about it. We all thought the Badgers were going to fall by two touchdowns. The post-game radio people even made mention that they expected a blowout.
It didn't happen. We had a result that everyone would have taken if you asked them on Thursday. We had the ball with a chance to tie or win. If you're honest with yourself, 30-27, even as a loss, was an end result you would have been very understanding about playing a ranked team in their place.
2) Staying healthy isn't a coaching matter.
We all mentioned that the defensive ends were a concern. Shelton Johnson was also out. And during the game, Kyle Costigan went down with a knee issue. And he came back into the game. Now, good legs are integral for an offensive lineman to generate a good push. And if you notice? Suddenly the Badgers weren't generating a good push.
Now this isn't meant as an indictment of Costigan. Because he wasn't alone on this, and no football player isn't going to play if they can walk. But if you notice the penetration on the designed run that was the deathblow to the Badgers' chances, he had help from Travis Frederick, and Chase Rome split that double team with such an ease. It may not have mattered if Danny set up for the bootleg.
3) The schedule gets easier.
Even in the Badgers' weakened state, can you see a game that's a guaranteed loss from here on out? Purdue could be intricate if that offense gets rolling. Ohio State's got a lot of athletic horsepower. But if you're being honest? The absolute darkest timeline for this team is 7-5. For a team that is still struggling to find itself, and a team that has had a couple of high profile reloading pieces flop, a winning record's definitely a good coaching job.
4) We have an obvious scapegoat.
Someone broke the Badgers' offensive rhythm and allowed Nebraska to get back into the game. Someone stopped calling plays for Melvin Gordon in the second half. Someone called a run in the two-minute offense. (And I trust the ol' Biel Coach that the 4th-and-1 wasn't it). If you must have your pitchforks at the ready, and if you must demand vengeance?
You're thinking I'm going to say Matt Canada right? Well, you're wrong.
I told you there was a curse placed on the House of Bucky. I told you there was a man who had doomed us to a loss that would feel like getting hit by a train. It was branded a comedy piece by some. It was amusing to others. But I was right, wasn't I?
If anyone is to blame for this start, it's the Internet's David Yang. And if he comes back in March? Charleston Southern's gonna hit us upside the head for a super upset.
But until then, or until we lose another game where Memes don't come into play? He's the one I blame. And I feel good about myself. I'm blaming the proper person.