Badgers Bowl Eligible After 31-17 Victory Over Rutgers

Badgers Bowl Eligible After 31-17 Victory Over Rutgers

Football

Badgers Bowl Eligible After 31-17 Victory Over Rutgers

MADISON, Wis. – Playing one of the worst teams in college football did nothing to cure what ails the University of Wisconsin’s beleaguered offense. Good thing Jonathan Taylor came to play.

Rebounding from his two fumble performance in last week’s loss at Northwestern with 208 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 27 carries, Wisconsin easily beat Rutgers, 31-17, on an afternoon where scrimmaging itself might have provided more of a challenge.

The win gives Wisconsin (6-2, 4-2 Big Ten) bowl eligibility for the 17th straight season and a little bit of boost heading into a challenging road swing that will take them to No.14 Penn State next weekend and then Purdue.

Taylor kickstarted the offense at the beginning of each half with touchdown runs and added a third late in the third quarter, giving the offense all the production it would need against the Big Ten’s doormat.

It’s a good thing, too, because quarterback Alex Hornibrook was poor in the first half (7-for-16, 92 yards and two interceptions) and spent the second half in the locker room after suffering his second concussion in three weeks.

Jack Coan replaced Hornibrook in the second half and UW kept the ball almost exclusively on the ground, churning out 217 rushing yards in the second half and only seven pass attempts.

With strong safety D’Cota Dixon and defensive end Isaiahh Loudermilk returning to action after missing the last three games, Wisconsin’s defense delivered a solid performance. Sending Rutgers (1-8, 0-6) to its eighth straight loss, the Badgers put true freshman Artur Sitkowski under constant pressure.

The result was UW delivering four quarterback hurries, eight pass breakups and a blocked field goal by outside linebacker Andrew Van Ginkel in the second quarter. Of the Scarlet Knights’ 333 yards of offense, 143 came in the final quarter.

In three all-time meetings, Wisconsin has outscored Rutgers 116-27.

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