One of the greatest bummers of my lifetime, which is further proof that my life has been pretty easy, was when EA Sports stopped making their yearly NCAA Football video games. The last version was released in the summer of 2013 and has been kept relevant by a cadre of devotees that constantly update the rosters so that the community at large can download them and continue playing with the new players.
I still have a PlayStation 3 and a well-worn copy of NCAA 14 in my basement and now that there are no real sports to report on I think it’s high time that we replayed the 2019 football season on PS3 and see if we can help the Badgers go undefeated and make the BCS Title Game, since it’s still 2014 in the game’s mind.
Before we get started with the game, however, we have some roster management to take care of. Below we will discuss each position group and then talk about who should redshirt and what the depth chart should look like. Sound good? I don’t care, that’s what we are doing.
First we look at the rosters for the special teams and defense.
Anthony Lotti has a KPW of 83 and a KAC of 88
Blake Wilcox has a KPW of 81 and a KAC of 74
A real waste of a roster spot having two specialists in one of the positions, but we are playing the hand we’ve been dealt. Wilcox, being a freshman, is obviously going to be redshirted and then he’ll be our punter moving forward for four years. Next season he’ll already be better than Lotti is as a senior.
It’s a travesty that Zach Hintze isn’t in this game as he is the biggest weapon on Wisconsin’s special teams. Anyways, we’ve got Collin Larsh and he’ll have to do. At least he’s only a sophomore so we won’t have to worry about recruiting a kicker or a punter for two years.
Both Reggie Pearson and Colin Wilder have already been redshirted so nothing to discuss here. Pearson is going to be a MONSTER by his junior year though. Pretty pumped to see how has stats improve. 78 AWR as a RS freshman??? He’s going to be picking off balls and blowing up stretch runs in his sleep!
To keep this as authentic as possible, we are just going to redshirt Scott Nelson from the jump since he only played in part of one game in real life. It’ll be tough for him to get his job back because Eric Burrell is so good. This is probably a good time to note that these ratings are from the END of the 2019 season.
Faion Hicks and Rachad Wildgoose have the starting corner positions on lock down. Semar Melvin is a good choice for a redshirt, even though he played IRL, because he’s buried on the depth chart here. Getting his 73 AWR up will be key and a season on the bench learning the intricacies of Jim Leonhard’s scheme will only help him there.
Hooooo baby is Zack Baun a monster. He’s going to be fun to rush with off the edge. Also, Spencer Lytle has impressive physical attributes, but needs a redshirt to get his AWR up. Once that happens he could be the next great OLB at Wisconsin. With only six OLBs on the roster, and playing a base 3-4 defense, redshirting one is a big decision but we are playing for the future as well as trying to win now. Yes, we can have it all.
Chris Orr might be the smartest man alive, just look at that AWR! I know it doesn’t happen in real life, but I’m strongly considering redshirting Leo Chenal. If he were better overall than Mike Maskalunas then I think he should play, but with them being equal I’m thinking we give Chenal an extra year in the weight room to literally turn into the Incredible Hulk.
Uh oh. This is a position that I have an issue with the ratings. I know that Bryson Williams was hurt for much of the year and he didn’t have a huge impact on the stat sheet when he was healthy...but a 68 overall??? And Keeanu Benton filled in admirably for him and is also better than a 68 overall! I can edit the players, which is not something I like to do, but this seems like an egregious miscarriage of justice. What do y’all think?
While the stats for the DTs were too low, I could understand an argument that the stats for some of the DEs are too high. I love Matt Henningsen dearly but he is NOT an 86 overall. Wisconsin as a program does well with redshirting players already, so there is no one at DE that I can have sit out for a year. We may have to take a look at what Rand’s stats are as a DT and slide him over there and redshirt Benton.
What are your thoughts on the roster so far? Any depth chart ideas? We will talk about the offensive side of the ball on Sunday.