Here’s an early look at Purdue’s 11th opponent of 2018, the Wisconsin Badgers:
Date/Time: Saturday, Nov. 17, 3:30 p.m,.
Location: Ross-Ade Stadium
Capacity: 57,236 | Tickets
Records: Wisconsin 6-4 overall, 4-3 Big Ten; Purdue 5-5, 3-4 Big Ten; Wisconsin ascended to No. 6 in the AP poll prior to its home loss in Week 3 to BYU. Since, the Badgers have dropped four of seven games. The victories to open the season were all at home over Western Kentucky (34-3) and New Mexico (45-14) prior to the loss to BYU (24-21). The Badgers started out league play with two wins: At Iowa (28-17) and Nebraska (41-24), before losing at Michigan (38-13). Since, the Badgers defeated Illinois (49-20), lost at Northwestern (31-17), defeated Rutgers (31-17) and lost this past weekend at Penn State (22-10).
Series notes: Thanks in part to 12-straight wins over Purdue, Wisconsin now leads the series 48-29-8. With seven straight wins in Ross-Ade Stadium, the Badgers now have a 21-16-3 mark in games played in West Lafayette. Purdue’s last win in the series was Oct. 18, 2003 at Camp Randall when Ben Jones made an 18-yard game-winning field goal with three seconds left to give 13th-ranked Purdue a 26-23 win over the 14th-ranked Badgers. The Boilermakers’ last win in Ross-Ade Stadium was 45-20 in Coach Joe Tiller’s first season as head coach in 1997. Last year, the Badgers slugged their way to a 17-9 win in Madison in the first meeting between coaches Paul Chryst and Jeff Brohm.
1. The Badgers may be without quarterback Alex Hornibrook again. Backup Zack Coan managed just 60 yards through the air, was sacked six times and picked off twice in the 12-point loss at Penn State last weekend. Hornibrook, who is battling a concussion and didn’t travel to Happy Valley, has played just one half of the Badgers last three games.
2. Wisconsin’s offensive line has struggled in pass protection. Coan was pressured 15 times in 27 pass attempts against Penn State. Still, the unit must be doing something right in the run game, as Jonathan Taylor had another big day with 185 yards rushing at Penn State, thanks in part to a 71-yard TD run on Wisconsin’s first possession. Taylor leads the nation in rushing and attempts with 1548 and 228 respectively. He ran for 219 yards in last year’s Purdue game and much like against Penn State, he scored on a long run (67 yards) on the Badgers’ first possession.
3. The Badger defense is still stout. After some mid-season injuries, the Wisconsin defense is getting healthier. The defensive backfield was depleted a couple weeks ago, but most have returned to action. The only season-ending injury has been to nose tackle Olive Sagapolu. Purdue managed just nine points on three field goals and amassed only 221 yards in total offense in last year’s eight-point loss in Madison.