For a second straight season, Miami (FL) and Wisconsin are meeting in a bowl game, this time in much colder weather in the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium on Dec. 27.
The Badgers (7-5) beat the Hurricanes (7-5) in the Orange Bowl last season after each team lost in its respective conference championship game to fall short of the College Football Playoff. This year the two teams didn’t reach the expectations they had in the preseason, but there’s plenty of talent on the two rosters that makes this bowl game one to watch.
Miami vs. Wisconsin: Pinstripe Bowl time, TV channel
Miami and Wisconsin play in the Pinstripe Bowl on Dec. 27 at 5:15 p.m. ET at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York. The game is on ESPN.
Miami vs. Wisconsin: Pinstripe Bowl prediction, preview
After beginning the season in the top 10, Miami and Wisconsin each finished an injury-plagued season outside the top 25. The Badgers and Hurricanes each returned their starting quarterback, but neither is expected to play in the Pinstripe Bowl.
Wisconsin quarterback Alex Hornibrook will not play for a fourth time this season, still dealing with symptoms from a concussion. He played in the regular-season finale against Minnesota, but backup Jack Coan will get the start instead.
For the Hurricanes, coach Mark Richt elected to go with Malik Rosier, the starter throughout 2017, in front of will redshirt freshman quarterback N’Kosi Perry who took over the full-time starting quarterback job from Rosier in November.
But that’s enough about the quarterbacks. Both teams rely heavily on their ground game with two potential NFL running backs.
Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor largely fell under the radar due to Wisconsin’s down season, but has had a better season than last year when he finished sixth in Heisman voting. Taylor will eclipse the 2,000-yard mark with just 11 yards against Miami. If Taylor gains 121 rushing yards, he will surpass Ron Dayne for second-most rushing yards in a single season in school history.
Travis Homer hasn’t had anywhere near the same production, but he’s Miami’s best offensive playmaker. He leads the Canes with 1,141 offensive yards on the year as the leading rusher with 969 yards on the ground.
Miami ranks 91st in total yards with 374.6 yards per game while Wisconsin ranks 40th with 433.2 yards per game.
On the defensive side of the ball, linebackers T.J. Edwards (10.5 TFL) and Ryan Connelly (10.0 TFL) lead the Badgers as the only players with double-digit tackles for loss. Meanwhile, Miami has four players with at least 13.0 tackles for loss this season. Second-team All-American Gerald Willis III leads the team with 18 tackles for loss along with fellow defensive linemen Jonathan Garvin (16.0 TFL) and Joe Jackson (14.5 TFL). First-team All-ACC linebacker Shaq Quarterman has 13 tackles for loss.
The best matchup with be that Miami defensive line against the staunch Wisconsin offensive line that has allowed less than two sacks per game.
|7-5 (4-4 ACC Coastal)||Record (Conference)||7-5 (5-4 Big Ten West)|
|29.3||Points per game||30.9|
|374.6||Yards per game||433.2|
|268.3||Yards allowed per game||358.8|
|140.8||Passing yards allowed||200.8|
|127.5||Rushing yards allowed||157.9|
1,007 yards (6 TDs, 5 INTs)
|Passing leader||Alex Hornibrook
1,532 yards (13 TDs, 11 INTs)
969 yards, 4 TDs
|Rushing leader||Jonathan Taylor
1,989 yards, 15 TDs
563 yards, 3 TDs
|Receiving leader||A.J. Taylor
508 yards, 3 TDs
76 total tackles, 13.0 TFL, 5.0 sacks
|Defensive leader||T.J. Edwards
103 total tackles, 10.5 TFL, 3 sacks
Miami vs. Wisconsin: Score prediction
While neither team is particularly impressive on offense, no team has really been able to stop Jonathan Taylor this season. The Miami defense is tough and has the nation’s best passing defense, but The Hurricanes offense has eclipsed 400 total yards just once since late September. Wisconsin doesn’t have to throw the ball to win this game.
Wisconsin 24, Miami (FL) 16