This is a big game. The B1G West division title is on the line. A potential Rose Bowl berth is on the line. Paul Bunyan’s freaking Axe is on the line. College GameDay is in Minneapolis for the first time ever. It’s probably going to be snowing. Kirk Herbstreit’s stunt double made it to town!
As far as I can tell about this game, Minnesota fans are a little more confident in their team’s chances than Wisconsin fans. But, despite beating the Badgers last year, there are more than a decade’s worth of reasons for the Gophers to be wary of this matchup. Also, Minnesota sports fans aren’t really allowed to have nice things. It’s something I’ve learned from living here and that sort of bad juju doesn’t just disappear because Lee Corso puts on Goldy’s head.
We here at B5Q are FULL of nervous energy and can’t wait for the game to kick off.
How to watch/listen
TV: ABC, 2:30 p.m. CT, Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Maria Taylor
Streaming: ESPN App
Radio: Badger Sports Network (iHeartRadio), Satellite: Sirius 83 or XM 83, Matt Lepay, Mike Lucas, Patrick Herb; for those of you in the Twin Citie: KFAN (100.3 FM) has the game, Mike Grimm, Darrell Thompson, Justin Gaard
Stadium: TCF Bank Stadium
Weather: Minneapolis, Minnesota (Spoiler: wear your parka)
Line: Wisconsin -3
Fun facts (according to the media guides)
- The Badgers and Gophers are set to meet for the 129th time in the FBS’ most-played rivalry, which stands even at 60-60-8 after Minnesota snapped UW’s 14-game win streak in the series last season.
- This year’s clash will be just the sixth meeting of ranked teams in series history, with Wisconsin holding a 5-0 record in games in which both the Badgers and Gophers hold Top 25 rankings.
- Wisconsin has won its last seven games vs. the Gophers in Minneapolis and owns a 5-0 record in TCF Bank Stadium
- With 5,856 career yards, RB Jonathan Taylor needs 144 to become the seventh player in FBS history to rush for 6,000 yards — and the 1st to do so in just three seasons.
- QB Jack Coan is completing 72.7% of his passes on the season, ranking third nationally.
- Minnesota is one of two schools to have two 1,000-yard receivers (Tyler Johnson and Rashod Bateman) and one 1,000-yard rusher (Rodney Smith). The other school is LSU (WRs Ja’Marr Chase, Justin Jefferson and RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire).
- Current UW head coach Paul Chryst won just one game during his senior season at Wisconsin in 1988, a 14-7 victory over Minnesota.
- Wisconsin has zero Minnesota natives on their roster because they are in the business of winning football games.
- Minnesota has six Wisconsin natives on their roster: Calvin Swenson, DB, Kaukauna (Kaukauna); Johnny Santaga, QB, Green Bay (Notre Dame De La Baie); Keonte Schad, DL, Madison (Ellsworth CC); Jack Kern, DL, Eau Claire (Memorial); Derik LeCaptain, LB, Gardner (Southern Door); Tyler Cooper, OL, Saint Croix Falls (Saint Croix Falls)
- “Ski-U-Mah//Row The Boat” is on the top left corner of every page in the Minnesota game notes. Think of how much money they’ll save on ink when they don’t have to put that on every page once P.J. Fleck leaves for a new job.