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How to watch and listen to Iowa vs. Wisconsin

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The Heartland Trophy (and much more) is on the line.

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NCAA Football: Wisconsin at Indiana Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

A familiar foe enters Camp Randall Stadium on Saturday afternoon, as the No. 8 (CFP) Wisconsin Badgers welcome the No. 20 Iowa Hawkeyes to Madison.

Iowa (6-3, 3-3 Big Ten) come off a huge 55-24 home win over the Ohio State Buckeyes, where the Hawkeyes slashed Urban Meyer’s defense for 487 yards in a a highly-balanced effort (243 yards rushing, 244 receiving). Its defense forced four interceptions, three by cornerback Joshua Jackson, from the arm of quarterback J.T. Barrett.

Wisconsin (9-0, 6-0) continued its undefeated season with a 45-17 win over Indiana, with true freshman Jonathan Taylor rushing for 183 yards on 29 carries and a 32-yard touchdown run.

The Badgers, however, will be without their budding star in wide receiver Quintez Cephus, who was lost for the season due to a right leg injury. UW is also without inside linebacker Chris Orr for this game after suffering a left leg injury in the first quarter against the Hoosiers.

A lot is on the line for Wisconsin. For the season as a whole, continuing an unblemished record through the rest of the season allows the program to continue being part of the College Football Playoff discussion. Lose against Iowa, and well, that will not matter, though the Big Ten West division championship is still in clear sight.

There’s also the Heartland Trophy and winning against a rival whose program is similar in physicality and reputation. The road team has won each of the last six times dating back to 2009, and 2015’s disappointing 10-6 loss is still remembered by those in the locker room.

“Just not seeing it where it’s supposed to be every day for a year is tough,” redshirt senior safety Joe Ferguson said on Wednesday. “Then you got to relive that memory of losing the game, so them putting the trophy at practice or in the meeting room so we walk by it every day is kind of just like, from top to bottom, everyone in this program knows it’s a big deal.”

When and where is the game?

Wisconsin and Iowa will kick off at 2:30 p.m. CT at Camp Randall Stadium.

How can I watch?

The game will be broadcast on ABC with Joe Tessitore assigned to play-by-play duties, Todd Blackledge as the analyst, and Holly Rowe reporting from the sideline.

How can I stream the game online?

Via WatchESPN.com and the ESPN mobile app (iOS/Android).

How can I listen to it on the radio?

On the Badgers Sports Network, where you’ll find the usual team of Matt Lepay, Mike Lucas, Mark Tauscher and Patrick Herb. Head to BadgerSportsNetwork.com to find it. You can also listen on iHeartRadio (iOS/Android/online) by searching “WIBA.”

On satellite radio, you’ll find the broadcast on Sirius 135/XM 195.

Who and what to watch during the game

Wisconsin pass defense vs. Iowa’s tight ends

Redshirt senior outside linebacker Garret Dooley on Wednesday summed up what this rivalry game could be about:

“I think that this is a game where everybody watching knows what each team is going to do. Each team is going to try to run the ball, control the line of scrimmage, control the clock and basically who’s going to win this game is the team that’s most physical at the line. I think that’s exactly where it starts.

Iowa’s rushing attack is 10th in the conference, gaining just over 143 yards per contest and 3.9 yards per carry, but ran for 243 against Ohio State last Saturday on 6.4 yards per attempt.

Wisconsin is second in the conference, fourth in the nation against the run in allowing just under 88 per game.

“They’ve been the same team for a long time and they know that opponents know what they’re going to do, and they don’t care,” Dooley said. “They’re still going to try to run the ball down your throats, and if that’s working, they’re not going to stop doing it. Especially as a front seven, we have to focus on being physical, maintaining our gaps and just trying to get them into our longer second and third downs so that we can pass rush and get after the quarterback.”

So, if Wisconsin can stop the run, the biggest threat could come from Iowa’s tight ends from the arm of (let me know if you’ve heard that he’s a Wisconsin native) quarterback Nate Stanley. The Menomonie, Wis., product has completed 58.3 of his throws for 1,929 yards with 22 touchdown passes, only four interceptions, 145.81 passer efficiency).

True sophomore Noah Fant (23 receptions, 353 yards, seven touchdowns) and redshirt freshman T.J. Hockenson (19, 272, three) are dangerous targets at tight end and combined for nine catches for 125 yards with four touchdown receptions against the Buckeyes last weekend.

Though Wisconsin’s cornerbacks should match-up well with Iowa’s wide receivers, it should bear watching who covers those tight ends and how they defend them. Could the Badgers utilize the safeties, inside linebackers, or possibly a cornerback to contain these two passing targets?

“No. 87, the tight end, is ridiculous,” Ferguson said. “He’s an athlete, he almost looks like a receiver running those routes so you really got to be on your technique. You got to be locked in and you can’t make a mistake because if he gets behind you it’s like a receiver getting behind you so you got to have a plan for it every time you’re covering him.”

Can the Wisconsin pass rush, which is second in the Big Ten in sacks (3.4 per game), get pressure on Stanley and an offensive line tied for second in sacks allowed (1.3)?

Wisconsin rushing attack vs. Iowa’s front seven

Wisconsin leads the Big Ten in rushing yards per game (244.8), while Iowa is in the middle of the pack in yards allowed on the ground (147.3)

The Badgers’ know they’re in a for a fight against a physical front seven with redshirt senior linebacker Josey Jewell leading the way.

“They are a tough defensive front. They play with great technique, great pad level and they know what they’re doing,” right guard Beau Benzschawel said. “They know their scheme well so it’ll be up to us up front and to get one-on-ones with the backs on safeties, so long as we can do that we should have a good day.”

Jewell leads the Big Ten in tackles is fourth in the nation in tackles (92) while also tallying 9.5 tackles for loss. He and that defense will have to try to stop true freshman phenom Jonathan Taylor who is fourth in the nation in rushing (152 yards per game) and is the conference’s leading rusher.

“He’s the four-star general, as we call it,” Benzschawel said. “He’s definitely the leader of their defense and he’s going to get everybody on the same page to make sure everyone knows what they’re doing.”

IF UW can get the ball rolling, that will help take pressure off of quarterback Alex Hornibrook, who is second in the conference in pass efficiency but has thrown interceptions in seven of nine games (including all six Big Ten games). He needs to eliminate those one to two bad throws/plays (the “oopsy” plays) in this game to keep the offense moving in a rhythm.

If Wisconsin cannot run the ball on Saturday, that spells trouble against the likes of cornerback Joshua Jackson and company, especially with the loss of wide receiver Quintez Cephus for the remainder of 2017.

Key notes to look at for Iowa’s defense: Though they give up nearly 222 yards through the air, they are third in the conference—13th in the nation—in efficiency (108.3). The Hawkeyes are also second in the Big Ten, tied for ninth in the FBS, in interceptions (13).

Though UW leads the nation in third down conversions (53.5 percent), Iowa only allows opponents to move the chains on that down 31.3 percent.

Game predictions

Jake Kocorowski: Wisconsin 24, Iowa 14

Kevin O’Connell: Wisconsin 38, Iowa 17

Owen Riese: Wisconsin 28, Iowa 20

Ryan Mellenthin: Wisconsin 31, Iowa 24

Drew Hamm: Wisconsin 8, Iowa 4 (all safeties)

Also Drew Hamm: Wisconsin 58, Iowa 57 (all 25-plus yard touchdowns...per Drew: “I can’t decide which way to go”)

Bold predictions

You all came through this week.

I think Fox Sports Wisconsin’s Dave Heller knows me too well.

This one is fair

Some positive thoughts on Hornibrook:

More turnover talk:

This sounds like something for “B5Q Bingo:”

That’s the spirit!

This one is my #brand

And now, the BOLDEST PREDICTION EVER. And I love it.