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Badger Bits: Mike Taylor is healthy, ready to rack up tackles

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Mike Taylor is fully healthy and could be freakishly productive this season.
Mike Taylor is fully healthy and could be freakishly productive this season.

The local presses rolled out two profiles on Wisconsin linebacker Mike Taylor. The first from the Journal Sentinel discusses Taylor's fondness for playing through pain. The second from the State Journal sees the senior asking what he could have done better in a 22-tackle performance against Ohio State last year.

Both pieces illustrate Taylor as the sort of unsatisfied, undeterrable, gruff curmudgeon of a 'backer that makes you feel safer knowing is roaming the streets somewhere. He isn't flashy, and if you didn't know that by Day 1 you will be reminded by announcers three or four times every Saturday. He is fundamentally sound, however, and if he is fully recovered from his 2009 ACL tear and 2010 knee surgery and 2012 hip surgery then Taylor could be frighteningly productive this season.

The more I think about this front seven, the more I like its potential. I know we're entering the period of hyper-inflated enthusiasm just before the season kicks off, but Wisconsin has a chance to punish teams this season. The simple reason is that Chris Borland and Taylor are fully healthy and could be as good a linebacking tandem as Wisconsin has had in some time.

Links after the jump:

Video of Bret Bielema talking at Big Ten media days.

There's a trophy in the works for the annual (through 2016) Wisconsin-Penn State game at the end of the season.

The Journal Sentinel breaks down the restructured right side of the offensive line.

Jeff Potrykus returns, says Wisconsin is in good shape heading into the season.

More on the position battle at quarterback. Bielema raved about Curt Phillips at media days.

Tom Mulhern previews the running backs. Also, Mon-TAY Ball.

Nebraska's alternate uniforms for the Wisconsin game are like REALLY red/unflattering/superhero-y/not in a good way.

Great, now can we stop asking them if they hate each other?

Jordan Kohout will remain with the team as a volunteer coach. Also, lots of love from Ball, Taylor and Ricky Wagner.

A conversation with B1G coaches on poaching Penn State players. (Note: Not a real conversation).

Speaking of which, PSU is stemming the loss of players from the Class of 2013 fairly well so far.

Iowa's running back problems aren't funny any more.

If you missed media days, Holly Anderson has the highlights.

Wrapping up: The James twins will compete for the an Olympic gold medal in the Men's 8 rowing final Wednesday. You can catch the action live at 4:30 a.m. live. I suggest you do.