The No. 14 Virtual Wisconsin Badgers marched into Ann Arbor, Michigan and took what was rightfully theirs...a win. On the back of Jonathan Taylor’s 288 total yards and a defense that forced three Shea Patterson interceptions, the Badgers beat the No. 3 Michigan Wolverines 48-31 from the comfort of Drew’s bed.
Things didn’t start off well for Wisconsin, as Michigan jumped out to an early 7-0 first quarter lead and forced the Badgers to punt for one of the few times this year. Thankfully, Anthony Lotti bombed one 48 yards to the one and didn’t allow Michigan to gain any momentum.
The Wolverines probably could have had a larger lead if it weren’t for Patterson’s propensity to throw interceptions. Wisconsin had the ball for a long time in the first quarter but failed to get a fourth down conversion that stalled out a drive.
Taylor hadn’t quite found his footing yet and the pass defense was, outside of the one interception, being gashed by Patterson.
Business really picked up in the second quarter as the Badgers scored quickly on a Jake Ferguson touchdown, forced another interception and then Taylor scored his first of three touchdowns on the day. Michigan wasn’t going to go away that easily though as they answered back with a long scoring drive of their own to tie the game at 14.
Garrett Groshek gave the Badgers the lead with under a minute to go in the half on a swing pass from Jack Coan, but Michigan was able to muster up a field goal as time expired to make it a 21-17 Wisconsin lead at the half.
Coan threw an interception during the second quarter, his first of two on the day, but Patterson was not about to lose the turnover battle on this afternoon. You’ll also notice the wild disparity between passing and rushing yards between the two teams loooool.
The third quarter saw the Badgers big advantage in time of possession start to take a bit of an effect on Michigan. While UW only scored 10 points, a 37-yard Collin Larsh field goal and another Ferguson touchdown, Michigan couldn’t get anything going offensively, especially on the ground. Patterson also threw his third interception of the game.
The Badgers were leading 31-17 heading into the fourth quarter and everything seemed to be well in hand especially after Taylor opened the scoring with another short touchdown run to push the lead to 38-17.
Game over, right? Wrong.
Michigan started to straight sling it all over the field and scored on a long 30-yard TD to Donovan Peoples-Jones, his second of the game, forced Coan into his second pick of the game and then Patterson found Sean McKeon for a score and it’s now 38-31 and the Big House is LOUD.
Who does Wisconsin turn to at a time like this? None other than Jonathan By God Taylor. The next play from scrimmage, after Michigan pulled it to within a touchdown, Taylor goes and rips this off.
The Badgers play the rest of the game knocking down Patterson passes and then grind out a game-winning drive which ended with a field goal as time expired to, you know, make sure the BCS was paying attention.
Wisconsin’s rush defense is looking real sharp so far as well as the rush offense, if we’re keeping it a buck. Both sides of the passing game could use a little work but the defense has been making big plays, so it’s ok for now.
Reggie Pearson was all over the place in this game and definitely deserves some “player of the game” credit even though Noah Burks ended up winning it on the defensive side of the ball. Is giving Jonathan Taylor 39 carries irresponsible? Well,,,,,,,,,,,maybe. But he just kept gaining yards and who am I to stop him!?!