November 4, 2008

Inside the numbers: Indiana

MADISON, Wis. - With only three games remaining on its schedule, the Wisconsin football team needs to win two in order to qualify for a bowl game. While all three games are very winnable, UW cannot afford to take that mentality especially with how the previous nine have unfolded.


For the Badger seniors, Saturday's game against Indiana will mark the final time they hit the road for an away conference game. It could also serve as a major step forward to qualify for their fourth straight post-season birth.

The following is an inside the numbers view of the UW-IU match-up:

2: The Badgers had two 100-yard rushers last weekend against Michigan State when P.J. Hill and John Clay each hit the milestone. It was the first time any UW duo had each rushed for triple digits since Brian Calhoun and Booker Stanley did it in 2005.

25: Over the past two weeks, the Badger defense seems to be playing to its potential. They held Michigan State to only 25 yards rushing in the 25-24 loss last Saturday.

27.3: Switching to Indiana, the Badgers have averaged a 27.3 point margin of victory over the Hoosiers during the last three games. Overall, UW has won nine of the past 11 meeting between the two schools and have averaged 39 points per game over that stretch.

5: Last year, when Indiana came to Madison, the Badgers scored touchdowns on five straight drives to hold a 35-0 edge at the break. UW went on to claim victory 52-17 in that contest.

8-of-9 UW has started eight of its nine games this season with the ball. Only Penn State, Illinois and Ohio State have won the toss and of those three, the Buckeyes were the only to receive the ball first.

200.3: Wisconsin ranks 21st in the country with just over 200 yards rushing per game. That mark is also good enough for second best in the conference.

133.6: Multi-faceted David Gilreath average nearly 135 all-purpose yards per game. That number is sixth best in the Big Ten.

221: Junior tight end Garrett Graham has 221 receiving yards over the past three games. During that stretch, he has logged six receptions in each game.

18: Over the course of the season, UW has forced 18 turnovers. During 2007, the team forced 19 the entire year.

1.67: Freshman kicker Philip Welch is averaging 1.67 field goals per game on the season. That is 12th best in the country.

15: Number of Indiana players that will be playing their final game at Memorial Stadium on senior day.

57 and 54: The Hoosier linebacking core may be the strongest of its entire team. Matt Mayberry and Will Patterson, both linebackers, lead the team with 57 and 54 tackles, respectively.

25: Defensively, IU has sacked opposing quarterbacks 25 times this season, good for 21st nationally.

75+: Against Central Michigan, running back Marcus Thigpen took a handoff 77 yards for the score. That was his fourth 75-yard touchdown run of the season.

175: Thigpen is 175 kick return yards away from breaking the school record in that category. For his career, he has 1,913 kick return yards.



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