Wisconsin football vs. Purdue: Time, TV schedule, game preview, score
Badgers battle Boilermakers
MADISON, Wisc. – Wisconsin doesn’t need help anymore and the 14th-ranked Badgers look to set up a showdown for a trip to the Big Ten Championship Game next week when they host pesky Purdue in a league contest Saturday afternoon. Wisconsin has knocked off Iowa and Nebraska in consecutive weeks to stay alive, pulling within one game of first place in the West Division after Minnesota lost last week, and the Badgers visit the Golden Gophers Nov. 30.
TV: 4 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE: Wisconsin -24
“Coming into the month we knew what we had to do,” Wisconsin senior linebacker Zack Baun told the Green Bay Press Gazette. “Play good November football. It’s not over yet. We haven’t accomplished what we wanted to accomplish. We’ve still got two more games.” The Badgers will lean on star junior running back Jonathan Taylor, who ran for 204 yards in last week’s 37-21 win over Nebraska to pass Archie Griffin (5,589) for second all time in Big Ten history with 5,634 and has averaged 270 yards rushing in his first two games versus Purdue. The Boilermakers have pulled out victories against Nebraska (31-27) on Nov. 2 and Northwestern (24-22) last week to remain in contention to clinch a bowl bid, but must end a 13-game losing streak against Wisconsin and beat improved Indiana to do it. “It wasn’t a pretty game, and we had some moments where we looked really bad,” Purdue coach Jeff Brohm told reporters after last week’s win. “But we hung in there, and that has kind of been the sign of our team.”
ABOUT PURDUE (4-6, 3-4 Big Ten)
Sophomore Aidan O’Connell, a former walkon, led the Boilermakers on winning drives the last two weeks after taking over with Elijah Sindelar (broken collarbone) and Jack Plummer (broken right ankle) out. O’Connell was 34-of-50 for 271 yards and a pair of touchdowns with two interceptions against Northwestern and his top target is freshman David Bell, who has 65 catches for 791 yards and five scores. Senior Brycen Hopkins, named one of eight semifinalists for the John Mackey Award that honors the nation’s top tight end, is another prime option with 45 receptions for 561 yards and three TDs.
ABOUT WISCONSIN (8-2, 5-2)
Taylor has rushed for 1,463 yards along with 17 touchdowns this season and coach Paul Chryst told reporters of his top back: “I feel blessed, being able to be around him. And the best part is we’ve still got more games to play. He is truly special, in so many ways.” Quarterback Jack Coan has been efficient, completing 72.2 percent of his passes, and the junior boasts 1,826 yards to go along with 13 touchdowns through the air while tossing just three interceptions. Junior Quintez Cephus is the top receiving threat (35 catches, 527 yards, four TDs), but senior A.J. Taylor led the way last week with 65 yards and a TD on two receptions.
1. Purdue senior LB Ben Holt is tied for 12th in the nation with 9.9 tackles per game and has 32 combined in the last three games.
2. The Badgers are 15th in the nation is rushing yards per game (235.1) and 12th in rushing defense (103.3).
3. Boilermakers K J.D. Dellinger (30) needs two field goals to move into fifth place all time in school history.
PREDICTION: Wisconsin 38, Purdue 17
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