MADISON — It was another electric atmosphere at Camp Randall Stadium on Saturday night, another overtime thriller, but this time the home team prevailed.
The No. 11 Wisconsin Badgers defeated the No. 7 Nebraska Cornhuskers 23-17 after redshirt senior running back Dare Ogunbowale scored on an 11-yard touchdown run in overtime. Redshirt sophomore safety D’Cota Dixon broke up a fourth-down pass in the end zone to secure the victory.
Ogunbowale carried the Wisconsin offense, gaining 120 yards on 11 carries. On the evening, the Badgers rushed for 223 yards, though they passed for only 114 between the combo of Alex Hornibrook and Bart Houston at quarterback.
Wisconsin’s defense gave up only 305 yards of offense against quarterback Tommy Armstrong and the Nebraska offense, but allowed the Huskers to convert nine of 18 third-down attempts.
Ryan Connelly and Leon Jacobs, both playing in place of the injured Jack Cichy, contributed 11 tackles each in a strong effort against a potent Nebraska offense.
At halftime, Wisconsin led 10-7 despite gaining only 132 total yards and giving up 152 to Armstrong and the Huskers.
There were two explosive plays on offense that carried UW to its first score. On Wisconsin’s second series, Hornibrook found Troy Fumagalli for a 30-yard gain. The next play, Bradrick Shaw took the handoff and sprinted 21 yards for the Badgers’ first touchdown of the evening.
Two interceptions, one each from senior cornerback Sojourn Shelton and redshirt sophomore safety D’Cota Dixon, halted momentum for the Huskers.
Dixon’s interception allowed Wisconsin to drive 25 yards in seven plays, which ended with Andrew Endicott’s 44-yard field goal to give Wisconsin a three-point advantage.
Interceptions by Hornibrook and Houston in the second half allowed Nebraska to stay in the game and ultimately tie it at 17-17 with 3:43 remaining.
Wisconsin drove to the Nebraska 26-yard line with under two minutes left, but Endicott’s 45-yard attempt sailed wide left. UW’s defense held once last-ditch attempt by Nebraska to drive down the field.
In overtime, senior running back Corey Clement ran the ball three times for 14 yards, then Ogunbowale took the handoff out of 11 personnel and took it 11 yards for the game-deciding score—though Endicott missed what could have been a catastrophic extra point.
The Badgers’ defense held its ground and ended the game with a fourth-down pass breakup to secure the win and the Freedom Trophy.