Halftime Analysis - No.12 Michigan 13, No.15 Wisconsin 7

Halftime Analysis - No.12 Michigan 13, No.15 Wisconsin 7

Football

Halftime Analysis - No.12 Michigan 13, No.15 Wisconsin 7

Missing three starters on defense, the general thought was that the University of Wisconsin would have to win its primetime road game at No.12 Michigan with an explosive offense. Through 30 minutes in Ann Arbor, the Badgers’ defense has been the group picking up an offense that again is out-of-sync.

Despite giving up 203 yards of offense, Wisconsin has held Michigan to three field goal attempts and enter the locker room fortunate to be down only 13-7 at Michigan Stadium.

Wisconsin’s offense ran the ball effectively and efficiently. Michigan’s defense entered the night sixth nationally in run defense, giving up 96.5 yards per game, but the Badgers delivered 102 first-half yards, 33 of which came on a Kendric Pryor jet sweep for a touchdown with 11:26 left in the second quarter.

The passing offense was another story, a conservative approached that yielded only 25 yards and an interception that was returned to the Wisconsin 15.

A defensive unit crippled with injuries didn’t allow Michigan to find the end zone, however, as the Badgers held the Wolverines to one of their four field goal attempts in the opening half. UW also held Michigan to no points on its opening 13-play drive, which ended with a 41-yard field goal.

The only big breakdown was quarterback Shea Patterson’s 81-yard run – the longest play for Michigan this season – that set up a 2-yard Karan Higdon touchdown.

Wisconsin got good news before kickoff with cornerbacks Deron Harrell and Caesar Williams cleared to play and outside linebacker Andrew Van Ginkel starting, but senior D’Cota Dixon couldn’t shake the injury bug. The strong safety wasn’t listed on the injury report throughout the week but Dixon, who wore a walking boot Monday, was ruled out after individual warm-up.

The secondary took another hit in the opening seconds of the first quarter when Faion Hicks suffered a left leg injury and was ruled out. Forced into a bigger role, true freshman Rachad Wildgoose has played well and delivered blanked coverage on a third-down incompletion in the end zone.

Wisconsin is 13-1 in B1G road games, 15-1 in all road games under head coach Paul Chryst, holding foes to 13.5 points in those games. The lone loss in 2016 was a 14-7 defeat in this venue.

 

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