Sep 24, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes running back Miyan Williams (3) celebrates scoring a touchdown with quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) during the first half of the NCAA Division I football game against the Wisconsin Badgers at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Cairns-The Columbus Dispatch

Ncaa Football Wisconsin Badgers At Ohio State Buckeyes

No. 3 Ohio State strikes early, easily hangs on vs. Wisconsin

C.J. Stroud threw for five touchdowns as No. 3 Ohio State scored early and often to defeat Wisconsin 52-21 in the Big Ten opener for both teams in Columbus, Ohio.

Stroud was 17-for-27 for 281 yards and an interception with Emeka Egbuka making six catches for 118 yards and two touchdowns. Cade Stover added four receptions for 51 yards and two TDs as well.

The Buckeyes, who scored 11 touchdowns on their first 12 possessions the previous game against Toledo, had four TDs and a field goal the first five times they had the ball to take a 31-7 halftime lead.

Ohio State (3-0, 1-0 Big Ten) led 21-0 through the opening 11:05 after a 2-yard run by Miyan Williams and scoring catches of 13 and 2 yards by Stover, the first two TDs of his career.

After Williams’ score made it 7-0, Tanner McAlister intercepted Graham Mertz at the Wisconsin 46 and had a return of 30 yards to set up the 14-0 lead. On the next series, Stroud found Stover open in the right corner.

The Buckeyes extended the lead to 28-0 at the 13:33 mark of the second quarter with Williams taking it in from the 3.

He ran for 101 yards and TreVeyon Henderson had 121 for the Buckeyes.

Wisconsin (2-2, 0-1) got on the board near the midway point of the second on a 1-yard plunge by Mertz at the end of 10-play drive for a 28-7 score. Later, Stroud threw a 12-yard TD to Julian Fleming early in the third quarter to make it 38-7 and his 8-yarder to Egbuka extended the margin to 45-7 late in the third quarter.

Mertz passed for 94 yards with a TD and an interception, completing 11 of 20 passes, while Braelon Allen ran for 165 yards, including one 75-yard touchdown carry to make it 52-21 halfway through the fourth quarter.

Ohio State had 539 total yards (281 passing, 258 rushing).

The Badgers have lost nine straight in the series and their last win in Columbus was a 24-13 victory in 2004.

–Field Level Media

Sep 17, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) celebrates a touchdown with wide receiver Emeka Egbuka (2) during the second half of the NCAA Division I football game against the Toledo Rockets at Ohio Stadium. Ohio State won 77-21. Mandatory Credit: Adam Cairns-The Columbus Dispatch

Ncaa Football Toledo Rockets At Ohio State Buckeyes

No. 3 Ohio State “rolling” ahead of matchup with rival Wisconsin

The Wisconsin defense will be tasked with containing an unstoppable Ohio State offense if the Badgers expect to defeat the No. 3 Buckeyes at Columbus on Saturday in the Big Ten opener for each.

While the Badgers (2-1) were dismantling New Mexico State 66-7 last Saturday, Ohio State (3-0) was having its way with Toledo, scoring touchdowns on its first seven possessions and 11 of 12 before running out the clock to mercifully end the 77-21 rout.

“Once we get the ball rolling it’s kind of hard to stop us, especially all the weapons we have and the way our defense has been playing,” Ohio State receiver Emeka Egbuka said. “I think we can go as far as we can take it with our offense.”

Ohio State racked up 763 total yards against Toledo, second-most in school history, with C.J. Stroud throwing for 367 yards and five touchdowns while completing 22 of 27 passes.

“He’s a heck of a quarterback, and I think they’ve got a lot of good players around him, and they do a great job of threatening and using the whole field,” Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst said Monday. “A lot of respect for their coaches and what they do, and how they do it.”

Wisconsin, which fell out of the national rankings following a 17-14 home loss to Washington State in its second game, relies on one of the best defenses in the country.

The Badgers rank eighth in scoring defense (8.0 points per game) and 11th in total defense (246.0 yards per game). The Badgers have an interception in eight straight games, while linebacker Nick Herbig has four sacks.

However, top Badgers cornerback Alex Smith (hamstring) will miss a fourth consecutive game.

“You’re always paying attention to who’s doing well on defense and they’ve been consistently good,” Ohio State defensive coordinator Jim Knowles said.

Ohio State can’t score if it doesn’t have the ball and the Badgers hope to win the possession battle.

Wisconsin quarterback Graham Mertz has thrown for more than 200 yards in three straight games and Chryst is impressed by his development.

“He’s not trying to do it all on his own,” Chryst said. “He’s letting those around him help him, and that part has been good.”

The Wisconsin game plan includes handing the ball Braelon Allen. He has rushed for five touchdowns while averaging 110 yards per game this season but knows the Buckeyes’ defense presents his biggest challenge to date.

“Everybody is fast,” Allen said Monday. “It is a very fast defense. Very talented. Those guys are there for a reason.

“I think we just have to play our brand of football. Physical, downhill running. Just try to do what we do best.”

Ohio State defensive tackle Michael Hall did not play last week but is expected to be available. The same for running back TreVeyon Henderson, who left with an injury in the first quarter vs. Toledo.

— Field Level Media

Sep 17, 2022; Madison, Wisconsin, USA;  Wisconsin Badgers wide receiver Chimere Dike (13) reacts after catching a pass during the third quarter against the New Mexico State Aggies at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin bounces back from disappointing loss, blows out New Mexico State

Braelon Allen ran for three touchdowns and Graham Mertz passed for three more as Wisconsin bounced back from an upset loss with a 66-7 rout of New Mexico State in a nonconference game on Saturday in Madison, Wis.

Allen scored on first-half runs of 39, 1 and 2 yards as Wisconsin rolled to a 35-0 halftime lead. Allen finished with 86 yards on 15 carries.

Isaac Guerendo added 74 yards on 12 carries, including second-half touchdown runs of 3 and 30 yards as the Badgers (2-1) pushed the lead to 63-0.

Graham Mertz completed 12 of 15 passes for 251 yards, including touchdowns of 18, 49 and 18 yards, with one interception.

New Mexico State (0-4) got its only touchdown on a 1-yard run by Ahmonte Watkins with 8:10 remaining.

Wisconsin, which dropped out of the Top 25 this week after losing 17-14 at home to Washington State, opens Big Ten play next Saturday at No. 3 Ohio State.

Guerendo returned the opening kickoff 50 yards to set up Wisconsin’s first score. Allen carried three consecutive times, culminating with a 39-yard touchdown run.

After punting on their next two possessions, the Badgers put together a seven-play, 63-yard scoring drive. Chez Mellusi scored from 2 yards out on the first play of the second quarter to put Wisconsin up 14-0.

The Badgers made it 21-0 on their next series when Mertz hit Keontez Lewis with an 18-yard touchdown pass.

On the Aggies’ next possession, Maema Njongmeta picked off Gavin Frakes and returned it 6 yards to the New Mexico State 2. Allen’s 1-yard touchdown plunge extended the lead to 28-0.

New Mexico State moved from its own 6 to the Wisconsin 12, but Ethan Albertson’s 29-yard field goal attempt was wide right with four seconds left in the half.

Mertz had touchdown passes of 49 yards and 18 yards on Wisconsin’s first two series of the second half to push the lead to 49-0.

–Field Level Media

Sep 10, 2022; Madison, Wisconsin, USA;  Wisconsin Badgers running back Braelon Allen (0) during the game against the Washington State Cougars at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin aims to correct mistakes vs. New Mexico State

After an upset loss at home that dropped Wisconsin out of the rankings, the Badgers will look to regroup when they host New Mexico State on Saturday at Camp Randall in Madison, Wis., in their final nonconference game before heading into the Big Ten season.

Wisconsin (1-1), ranked No. 19 last week, failed to score in the second half and dropped a 17-14 decision to Washington State this past weekend. New Mexico State (0-3) is coming off a 20-13 loss at rival UTEP.

The Badgers outgained Washington State by almost 150 yards and had a 16-minute advantage in time of possession, but had three turnovers, two missed field goals and 11 penalties for 106 yards.

“I do believe they’re correctable,” Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst said. “The last drive, we jump offsides, that’s something you’ve got to correct. I’m not saying it won’t ever happen again, but that’s correctable. I think you’ve then got to continue to look at what’s causing those things.”

Braelon Allen, who rushed for 148 yards in an opening 38-0 win over Illinois State, ran for 98 yards on 21 carries, but was kept out of the end zone. He’s rushed for 246 yards this season, which is fourth in the Big Ten.

Graham Mertz completed 18 of 31 passes for 227 yards with two touchdowns and one interception against Washington State. Both scoring passes went to tight end Clay Cundiff in the second quarter to erase a 7-0 deficit.

New Mexico State has already faced one Big Ten opponent this season, losing to Minnesota 38-0 in its second game.

After trailing 17-0 at the half against UTEP, the Aggies were driving for the tying touchdown when quarterback Diego Pavia lost a fumble at the UTEP 14-yard line with three seconds remaining.

“There were spurts in the game that we had opportunities,” first-year New Mexico State head coach Jerry Kill said. “There was probably left about 14 to 17 points out there. But what we want to be and who we want to be really showed up more in the second half.”

Pavia, who came on in the second quarter against UTEP, is the team’s leading rusher with 119 yards on 23 carries. Pavia has completed 18 of 45 passes for 185 yards with three interceptions. Gavin Frakes is 12-for-25 for 197 yards with three picks and the lone passing touchdown.

Kill is familiar with Wisconsin from his five seasons as head coach at Minnesota from 2011-15 but went 0-4 against the Badgers during his time in the Big Ten.

–Field Level Media

Sep 3, 2022; Pullman, Washington, USA; Washington State Cougars head coach Jake Dickert sings the school fight song after defeating the Idaho Vandals at Gesa Field at Martin Stadium. Washington State won 24-17. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Familiarity a key for Wazzu’s Jake Dickert vs. No. 19 Wisconsin

Washington State coach Jake Dickert has a pretty good idea of what to expect Saturday when his Cougars travel to his home state to take on 19th-ranked Wisconsin in Madison.

Wisconsin and Washington State each opened with non-conference victories over FCS teams last weekend. The Badgers dominated Illinois State 38-0, and the Cougars overcame a 10-0 deficit and held off Idaho 24-17.

Wisconsin dropped one spot in the AP poll despite its victory.

Dickert grew up in Wisconsin and played college football at Wisconsin-Stevens Point, where he also began his coaching career as a grad assistant.

“I think when you grow up there, there’s a few things that are in your blood, right? Beer, cheese and Packers and Badgers and Bucks and Brewers,” he said. “I’m a product of Wisconsin.

“Our team is ready for this environment and in what that’s going to mean going on the road and trying to win against a really good football team,” Dickert said. “That is the focus. Period.”

Against Illinois State, the Badgers got a school-record 100-yard interception return for a touchdown from John Torchio for their first score. On their next possession, Braelon Allen scored on a 96-yard run, and the Badgers were in control the rest of the way. Wisconsin led 17-0 at the half and 31-0 entering the final period.

Allen, who rushed for 1,268 yards last season as a freshman, carried 14 times against Illinois State with 148 yards and two TDs. Graham Mertz, who was inconsistent last season, completed 14 of 16 passes for 219 yards and one touchdown.

“I got to grow up in the Ron Dayne era,” Dickert said of the Badgers’ running back great. “The history of Wisconsin at tailback and Braelon Allen is probably, if not, maybe going to be the best one ever to come through there. I’ll let those fans decide that. But he’s a physical talent, he’s amazing, and he reminds me a little bit of Ron Dayne.”

Against Illinois State, the Badgers allowed four passes of 23 yards or more but also had two interceptions and four sacks. Wisconsin was penalized five times for 51 yards.

“I liked a lot of what we did,” Wisconsin coach Paul Chryst said. “I thought the effort and the way they went about things was good. And you look at the film, and each individual, each group, and yes as a team, there’s areas where we need to get better and can get better.”

Cameron Ward, a transfer from Incarnate Word, threw three touchdown passes in his debut for Washington State. He completed 25 of 40 passes for 215 yards without an interception. Ward led the Football Championship Subdivision in touchdown passes last season with 47 and was third in passing yards with 4,648.

The Cougars ran for 143 yards last week, 5.7 per carry. Nakia Watson, who transferred to Washington State after two seasons at Wisconsin, ran for a team-high 117 yards on 18 carries.

Washington State held Idaho to 62 yards on 34 rushing attempts, and no touchdowns. Idaho managed 212 yards through the year but the Cougars also picked off two passes and had seven sacks.

The Cougars fumbled three times and lost them all, with the first one returned 45 yards for Idaho’s first touchdown.

“At the line of scrimmage is where Wisconsin has been tremendous for a long time, and that’s their calling card,” Dickert said. “The challenge is to make sure we keep Cam upright.”

Wisconsin and Washington State have met just once, with the Badgers winning 42-21 at home in 2007.

–Field Level Media

Sep 3, 2022; Madison, Wisconsin, USA;  Wisconsin Badgers running back Braelon Allen (0) rushes with the football during the second quarter against the Illinois State Redbirds at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

No. 18 Wisconsin trounces Illinois St., 38-0

John Torchio scored on a 100-yard interception return and Braelon Allen on a 96-yard run as No. 18 Wisconsin rolled to a 38-0 nonconference victory over visiting Illinois State on Saturday in Madison, Wis.

Allen finished with 148 yards on 14 carries, including a 1-yard touchdown. Graham Mertz completed 14 of 16 passes for 219 yards and one touchdown.

Wisconsin led 17-0 at the half and 31-0 entering the final period.

Torchio turned the game in the first quarter with the longest interception return for a touchdown in Wisconsin history.

On their second possession, the Redbirds moved from their own 20 to a first down at the Wisconsin 12 with the aid of two 15-yard penalties. On third down from the 9, Torchio stepped in front of Zack Annexstad’s pass at the goal line and cut to the right side, picking up a key final block at the Redbirds 30.

On the Badgers’ next possession, Allen bounced right off a clogged middle and went 96 yards to put Wisconsin up 14-0. It was the Badgers’ longest touchdown run in school history, breaking the mark of 93 yards by James White in 2013.

Vito Calvaruso put Wisconsin up 17-0 with 3:14 left in the half, capping a 13-play, 68-yard drive with a 28-yard field goal.

Illinois State ran 33 first-half plays to 19 for Wisconsin and had the advantage in time of possession, 18:52 to 11:08.

The Badgers opened the second half with a 59-yard scoring drive, capped by Allen’s 1-yard touchdown run to make it 24-0.

Wisconsin followed with a 93-yard scoring drive, keyed by Mertz hitting Chimere Dike on a 74-yard completion and 16-yard touchdown pass. Isaac Guerendo added a 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

Annexstad, a transfer from Minnesota, completed 16 of 24 passes for 186 yards with two interceptions for the FCS Redbirds, who dropped to 1-9 vs. Big Ten opponents.

Illinois State was hampered by the loss of Cole Mueller, who rushed for a team-high 977 yards last season. He was carted off with an apparent leg injury midway through the first quarter after three carries for 21 yards.

–Field Level Media

Dec 30, 2021; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Graham Mertz (5) warms up before facing the Arizona State Sun Devils in the 2021 Las Vegas Bowl at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Braelon Allen, Wisconsin rumble past Arizona State in Las Vegas Bowl

Braelon Allen rushed for 159 yards on 29 carries and Wisconsin controlled the ball for the final 9:57 to hold on for a 20-13 victory over Arizona State in the Las Vegas Bowl on Thursday night.

Graham Mertz threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Jake Ferguson and John Chenal rushed for an 8-yard score for the Badgers (9-4), who led 14-3 after the first quarter. Nick Herbig had two of Wisconsin’s four sacks as the Badgers won for the eighth time in their final nine games.

Jayden Daniels completed 11 of 21 passes for 159 yards and one interception and also rushed for 40 yards for the Sun Devils. Daniyel Ngata had a 3-yard scoring run and B.J. Green recorded two sacks for Arizona State (8-5).

Wisconsin outgained the Sun Devils 294-219. Arizona State had just 60 yards on the ground — Ngata had 23 on 11 carries — without 1,000-yard rusher Rachaad White, who opted out of the game to prepare for the NFL draft.

Mertz completed 11 of 15 passes for 137 yards, one touchdown and one interception for the Badgers, who have won seven of their past eight bowl games.

The Sun Devils trailed by 14 at halftime before dominating the third quarter with 90 total yards while holding the Badgers to minus-7.

Ngata’s touchdown with 8:52 left in the third drew Arizona State to within 20-13.

But there would be no late-game drive to knot the score despite the Sun Devils pinning Wisconsin back at its own 3-yard line after a punt with 9:57 remaining in the contest. The Badgers responded with a punishing 18-play, 90-yard drive in which they ran 16 times and chalked up six first downs while eating up the rest of the time on the clock.

Allen carried 12 times for 101 yards in the first half — six more than Arizona State’s total yardage — as the Badgers held a 20-6 lead.

Chenal scored on his 8-yard run for Wisconsin with 11:40 left in the first quarter. The score was set up by John Torchio’s interception of Daniels at the Sun Devils’ 36.

Cristian Zendejas got Arizona State on the board with a 38-yard field goal with 4:21 left before Mertz connected with a wide-open Ferguson to make it 14-3 with 1:37 remaining in the quarter.

Zendejas kicked a 36-yard field goal less than four minutes into the second quarter before Collin Larsh made field goals of 48 and 35 yards to account for the 14-point lead at the break.

–Field Level Media

Nov 27, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Wisconsin Badgers cornerback Alexander Smith (11) breaks up a pass intended for Minnesota Gophers wide receiver Chris Autman-Bell (7) during the second quarter at Huntington Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota’s defense holds strong to kill No. 14 Wisconsin’s title chances

Tanner Morgan directed a pair of second-half touchdown drives, and Minnesota’s defense held Wisconsin in check for a 23-13 upset on Saturday, denying the visiting Badgers a berth in the Big Ten championship game.

Wisconsin (8-4, 6-3 Big Ten), which had won seven straight games to climb to No. 14 in the College Football Playoff poll, would have won the Big Ten West with a victory. Instead, the Badgers finished in a three-way tie with Minnesota (8-4, 6-3) and Purdue (8-4, 6-3) one game behind No. 16 Iowa (10-2, 7-2), which will face No. 5 Michigan in the conference title game next Saturday.

Morgan capped a 74-yard drive with a 27-yard touchdown pass to Chris Autman-Bell to put the Gophers up 20-13 with 1:56 left in the third quarter. Morgan kept the drive alive with a 27-yard completion to Dylan Wright on third-and-10 to the Badgers 35.

Wisconsin’s Collin Larsh hit the crossbar with a 48-yard field-goal attempt with 11:44 remaining. Matthew Trickett’s 36-yard field goal, his third of the game, put the Gophers in front 23-13 with 6:08 left.

Morgan completed 11 of 16 passes for 199 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

Minnesota held the Badgers to 233 yards of total offense, including 62 on the ground. Wisconsin averaged 267.1 rushing per game during its winning streak. Freshman Braelon Allen, who had seven consecutive 100-yard rushing games, was held to 47 yards on 17 carries. Graham Mertz completed 21 of 38 passes for 171 yards and one interception for the Badgers.

The Badgers’ only touchdown came on Scott Nelson’s 25-yard interception return in the second quarter for a 10-3 lead. Wisconsin had won eight consecutive times at Minnesota in the rivalry battle for Paul Bunyan’s Axe, last won by the Gophers at home in 2003.

Nelson’s pick six was Wisconsin’s 20th takeaway in eight games. Trickett’s 31-yard field goal cut the lead to 10-6 midway through the second quarter.

Minnesota capitalized on an interception on the opening possession of the second half to go in front 13-10. Justin Walley wrestled the ball away from receiver Kendric Pryor for a first down at the Badgers 28. Morgan hit Brevyn Spann-Ford for 26 yards on the first play and Ky Thomas then skirted right end from 2 yards out.

Wisconsin drove from its own 25 to the Gophers 9 but had to settle for Larsh’s 28-yard field goal to make it 13-13.

The Gophers opened their scoring with a 14-play, 65-yard drive that chewed up 7:31, culminating in Trickett’s 28-yard field goal. Wisconsin safety Collin Wilder was ejected on the first play after being called for targeting.

Wisconsin responded with an 85-yard drive of almost 10 minutes that ended with Larsh’s 25-yard field goal.

–Field Level Media

Nov 20, 2021; Madison, Wisconsin, USA;  Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Graham Mertz (5) throws a pass during the third quarter against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Resurgent No. 14 Wisconsin tries to lock up Big Ten West vs. Minnesota

As unlikely as it seemed one month into the season, Wisconsin can clinch a berth in the Big Ten title game when the Badgers travel to face archrival Minnesota on Saturday in Minneapolis in the battle for Paul Bunyan’s Axe.

Wisconsin (8-3, 6-2 Big Ten), ranked No. 14 in the College Football Playoff poll, would win the Big Ten West with a victory over the Gophers (7-4, 5-3). The Badgers have won seven straight since opening the season 1-3, including two conference losses, with each defeat to a ranked team.

Wisconsin enters tied with Iowa atop the West, but holds the tiebreaker by virtue of its 27-7 victory over the Hawkeyes. Minnesota could still win the division with a win over Wisconsin, but also would need Nebraska to beat Iowa and Purdue to defeat Indiana.

The bordering state rivals have met 130 times. The Badgers have won the last two meetings, including 20-17 in overtime last season, and 16 of the last 17. The Gophers’ only win in that span was 37-15 at Madison in 2018.

“The game has always meant a lot,” Wisconsin coach Paul Chryst said. “I know the times I’ve been fortunate enough to be a part of it, and I know every one of our guys, you get a chance to play in this game, it’s the longest rivalry in college football and to be a part of that is special. And certainly, we know it’s against a very good football team.”

Wisconsin is coming off a 35-28 home victory over Nebraska in which the Cornhuskers shredded the nation’s top-ranked defense for 452 total yards, including 351 through the air. Nebraska drove to Wisconsin’s 11-yard line in the final minute before being stopped on fourth down.

Freshman Braelon Allen continues to power the resurgent Wisconsin ground game, especially with the loss of then-leading rusher Chez Mellusi to a season-ending leg injury three weeks ago. After just 12 carries through the first four games, the 238-pound Allen has topped 100 yards seven consecutive games, including a season-high 228 yards with three touchdowns against Nebraska.

Wisconsin leads the nation in rushing defense (64.3 yards per game), is second in total defense (237.7 ypg) and fifth in scoring defense (15.8 ppg). The Badgers have 19 takeaways during their seven-game win streak.

When asked what jumps out at him about the Badgers defense under coordinator Jim Leonhard, Minnesota coach P.J. Fleck said, “Everything. All of it.”

“They are maybe one of the best defenses we played against in our time here of any opponent,” Fleck said.

After consecutive losses to Illinois and Iowa, Minnesota bounced back last week with a 35-14 win at Indiana.

Quarterback Tanner Morgan completed 14 of 20 passes for 196 yards and two touchdowns, including 5-for-5 on third down with for four first downs and a touchdown. Morgan has completed 58.8 percent of his passes for 1,736 yards and nine touchdowns, with seven interceptions.

“They’ve got an identity and they’re good at what they do,” Chryst said. “We’ve played against their quarterback a number of times and he’s a really good football player. … They’re physical, they play hard, they’ve got guys than can make plays, skill players that can make plays.”

After injuries to preseason All-American Mohamed Ibrahim in the opener, and then Trey Potts midway into the season, redshirt freshman Ky Thomas has become the top ball carrier with 625 yards, topping 100 yards in four of the last five games. Freshman Mar’Keise Irving has rushed for 531 yards.

–Field Level Media

Nov 20, 2021; Madison, Wisconsin, USA;  Nebraska Cornhuskers tight end Travis Vokolek (83) rushes with the football between Wisconsin Badgers linebackers Noah Burks (41) and Jack Sanborn (57) during the first quarter at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

No. 15 Wisconsin outlasts Nebraska, 35-28

Braelon Allen had 22 carries for 228 yards and three touchdowns to lift No. 15 Wisconsin past visiting Nebraska 35-28 Saturday in Madison, Wis.

Allen eclipsed 100 yards rushing for the seventh straight game.

The Badgers (8-3, 6-2 Big Ten) won their seventh in a row after a 1-3 start.

Defensively, Collin Wilder recorded two interceptions.

Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez threw for one touchdown and rushed for one score. Martinez was 23 of 35 for 351 yards with two interceptions and Austin Allen had seven receptions for 143 yards.

The Cornhuskers (3-8, 1-7) dropped their fifth consecutive game.

Wisconsin went ahead 7-0 when Stephan Bracey returned the opening kickoff 91 yards for a touchdown.

Nebraska came right back on its first possession with a five-play, 74-yard drive capped by Markese Stepp’s 1-yard burst to tie the game at 7.

The Badgers regained the lead 14-7 when Allen scampered 71 yards for a career-long score with 1:59 remaining in the first quarter.

The Cornhuskers’ defense then tightened and the offense responded with a 4-yard touchdown pass from Martinez to Samori Toure to equalize at 14 with 6:35 left in the second.

Wisconsin’s 14 points allowed in the first half was its highest total of the season.

Wilder’s first interception went for 41 yards. The Badgers capitalized with a strong drive which resulted in Graham Mertz’s 17-yard touchdown pass to Kendric Pryor for a 21-14 lead with 11:35 to go in the third.

Nebraska rallied once again and tied the game at 21 when Martinez plunged in from the 1 with 6:24 remaining in the third.

Allen’s second touchdown, from 3 yards out, capped Wisconsin’s ensuing drive for a 28-21 advantage with 1:30 left in the third.

The Cornhuskers tied the game at 28 when Marvin Scott scored from 2 yards out with 6:27 to go.

When Allen broke several tackles and ran 53 yards for his third score with 3:50 remaining, the Badgers regained the lead, 35-28.

Nebraska was denied on fourth-and-20 from the Wisconsin 21 with four seconds left.

–Field Level Media