Wisconsin Ranked In Way-Too-Early Top 25

Wisconsin Ranked In Way-Too-Early Top 25

Football

Wisconsin Ranked In Way-Too-Early Top 25

MADISON, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin enters spring practices with a number of personnel issues.

The Badgers need to replace three starters on the offensive line and at linebacker, improve depth at receiver and improve the overall product at quarterback.

Even so, college football writers have some faith in Wisconsin to bounce back in 2019.

While it’s highly unlikely the Badgers will be ranked fourth to begin the season, like they were in the AP poll, Wisconsin found itself listed in the majority of the pre-preseason polls released shortly after Clemson throttled Alabama, 44-16, in the 2019 National Championship game Monday night.

NCAA.com has Wisconsin at No.14, saying, “The Badgers were supposed to be in the CFP chase but instead fell to 8-5, even with RB Jonathan Taylor winning the Doak Walker Award. Jon Dietzen will keep Wisconsin’s offensive line a force, even with departures. But it’s all about the quarterback. Alex Hornibrook struggled (13 TDs, 11 interceptions, 59.5 completion percentage), though Jack Coan led the team in the Pinstripe Bowl win against Miami.”

247sports lists Wisconsin at No.15, saying Wisconsin will likely return to its double-digit win norm in 2019 as long as a quarterback solution is found.

Bleacher Report’s panel of experts―Matt Hayes, David Kenyon, Adam Kramer, Kerry Miller, Brad Shepard and Ian Wharton – pegged Wisconsin at No.19. Iowa was the highest ranked Big Ten West team at No.16, while defending West champion Northwestern was No.23.

ESPN’s Mark Schlabach put the Badgers at No.21 and pointed out UW’s challenging cross-divisional games next season: Michigan (home), Michigan State (home) and Ohio State (road).

The Sporting News put UW at No.22, ahead of No.24 Northwestern and No.25 Minnesota from the West Division, because the Badgers have enough pieces, especially tailback Jonathan Taylor, to reclaim the top spot in the division.

USA Today put the Badgers at No.23 because of the uncertainty at quarterback and the offensive line, although adding UW is a safe bet to win at least eight games during the regular season.

 

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