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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Tuesday, October 03, 2023

Football: Wisconsin looks to open Big Ten season in high fashion against Purdue

Saturday Wisconsin heads home to open its Big Ten season in high fashion against Purdue at Camp Randall. 

Wisconsin has won its past seven match-ups against the Boilermakers and has not lost at Camp Randall to Purdue in exactly a decade.

Both the Boilermakers and the Badgers are coming off tough losses last weekend.

Purdue was winning against last year's national runner-up Notre Dame after three quarters and Wisconsin fell short to Arizona State on a controversial officiating blunder. 

Purdue is 1-2 for the season thus far, losing against Cincinnati to open the season and escaping with a win over Indiana State before losing to the Fighting Irish last week.

Both teams had more success passing than rushing last week. Purdue achieved a net of 38 rushing yards on 21 attempts along with 256 passing yards and 25 completions on 41 attempts. Wisconsin is coming off a devastating loss to No. 23 Arizona State in which a botched call prevented the Badgers from attempting the game winning field goal.

The Pac-12 released a statement apologizing for poor officiating and has assured measures will be taken to educate officials in order to prevent this instance from reoccurring.

Wisconsin did find a positive in its defensive front, especially after senior nose guard Beau Allen recovered a botched snap to the punter in Purdue's end zone for his first career touchdown.

Red shirt senior linebacker Chris Borland had a season-high 10 tackles and one sack in the game. 

Wisconsin will have some more personnel in the depth chart when junior linebacker Derek Landisch, who is likely to return from injury, returns. 

”Right now it looks like [Landisch has] made tremendous progress,” head coach Gary Anderson said. “I’d say he’s very likely to play.” 

The Badgers young secondary was tested last week against Arizona State when consecutive pass interference calls on red shirt sophomore cornerback Darius Hillary and true freshman cornerback Sojourn Shelton helped the Sun Devils to advance far enough to score a field goal in their last drive of the half.

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“We were okay at applying pressure on Saturday.” defensive coordinator Dave Aranda said. “We can be better against Purdue in that department, and that has a lot to do with playing man to man.” 

Red shirt senior safety Dezmen Southward had his first interception of the season and 6 tackles against Arizona State Saturday.

The Boilermakers’ defense had five different players with tackles for a loss and one sack last week against Notre Dame.

Red shirt sophomore running back Melvin Gordon rushed for 193 yards on 15 carries last week, the best so far this season.

Working in rotation with Gordon is senior running back James White with 297 rushing yards this season, as well as freshman running back Cory Clement with 251.

Wisconsin will host Purdue at 2:30pm with the game being broadcast on ABC. 

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