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Bielema names O'Brien the starting QB at Wisconsin

The Badgers head coach makes official what many had expected at QB. Dave Miller

Print This August 19, 2012, 09:05 PM EST

Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema announced on Twitter Sunday that Danny O'Brien will be the starting quarterback for the team's opener September 1 against Northern Iowa.

As I wrote earlier Sunday, the former Maryland starter has fit very well into Matt Canada's offense in Madison, so the news was expected that O'Brien would win the job.

O'Brien reportedly had a strong week in preseason camp, and he has looked sharp overall since his arrival. He beat out senior Curt Phillips and redshirt freshman Joel Stave for the starting job.

"Both Curt and Joel had great camps as well, we are very fortunate that we have 3 QB's that can play winning football for us," Bielema tweeted.

The 2010 ACC newcomer of the year struggled in his second season as Maryland's starter as the team switched to a spread attack, but he should thrive in Wisconsin's pro-style attack, especially because the offense will look similar to those in years past despite former OC Paul Chryst moving on to become the head coach at Pitt.

Before taking a step back last fall, O'Brien looked like one of the rising stars in college football. In his debut ACC campaign under Terps head coach Ralph Friedgen and OC James Franklin, the 6-3, 215-pounder went 7-3 as a starter and passed for 2,438 yards with 22 touchdowns and eight interceptions. His efficiency rating of 134.5 ranked fifth nationally among FBS freshmen while running the Terps' pro-style offense. He looked poised to continue his success in College Park, but the change in offensive philosophy hurt his development.

Email dave.miller@nationalfootballpost.com or follow me on Twitter at Miller_Dave

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