Badgers quarterback job still up in air

first_imgJEFF SCHORFHEIDE/Herald photoWhen Bret Bielema took the podium for his weekly press conference yesterday, one thing was on everyone’s mind: Who will play quarterback for the Badgers Saturday at Iowa?But don’t ask Bielema; he doesn’t know.“(Offensive coordinator) Paul (Chryst) and I have made discussions in the last couple weeks about the quarterback situation, where we’d go,” Bielema said. “During the course of Saturday’s ball game, after [Allan Evridge’s] last series, we obviously made the change and went in a certain direction.”Evridge’s last pass Saturday was intercepted by Lydell Sargeant on a play Bielema called an “easy read” after the game.Junior Dustin Sherer replaced him.“On Sunday, we both agreed that Dustin, when he was in there, did a lot of good things,” Bielema said. “I liked Dustin’s response. [We’ll see] how he handles this week.”That said, Bielema still hasn’t given up on Evridge, whose touchdown run Saturday accounted for the Badgers’ lone seven points.“Allan, on that scoring drive, did a lot of things that we’ve been asking and expecting him to do in terms of taking off with the football,” Bielema added.Although he is uncertain who will be under center against the Hawkeyes, Bielema is certain about one thing: Next year has no bearing on the decision.“How they handle this week will determine who plays on Saturday,” he said.Putting Penn State behind themThere’s no doubt that a 48-7 loss at home is about as devastating a defeat as a team can suffer. However, Bielema, his staff and his players are ready to put it in the past and move on.“As early as Saturday night after the game [I was] trying to gauge the pulse of our team in the locker room, the mood of our coaches,” Bielema said. “I decided to change things up and go in a little different direction. We did our normal lifting, conditioning and stretching with our players [Sunday]. After that, we gave them some time to get away, come back. We had a team meeting that I briefly spoke about where we were as a football team, where I thought we needed to go.”Despite being 0-3 in conference play, Bielema is still confident that he has the right group of guys to move forward.“We have a large majority of seniors in our starting lineup,” he said. “Guys that have been through some adversity, guys that understand tough times bring about tough people and tough people are the ones that last.”And according to their coach, those players still have accolades to achieve.“We have 13 team goals, and the first six of those 13 are all day-to-day thinking, day-to-day mentality, how we approach practice every day, how we approach game week,” Bielema explained. “Obviously one of the biggest ones on our board is the ‘1-0’ mentality, and I don’t think there’s any better time in this season to focus on that mentality to get where we need to be.“What I gave the staff direction to do was show the guys the clips that they need to see from Saturday’s game, but the emphasis needed to be on moving forward.”Urbik’s streak on the lineSenior guard Kraig Urbik, a team co-captain, has made 45 consecutive starts on the offensive line. But after leaving Saturday’s game with a left knee injury, that streak will be in jeopardy Saturday.“Kraig, although he might have been in more pain than Gabe (Carimi), his injury may not have been as significant as Gabe’s,” Bielema said.Carimi left the game against Ohio State with a similar injury and was inactive against Penn State.“It wouldn’t be surprising to me if [Kraig will] do everything he can [to play] and plead with the doctors as much as he can,” Bielema added.As for the streak?“It’s impressive because it’s been at multiple positions,” Bielema said. “He was recruited by other schools, but Kraig was a typical Wisconsin kid that came in, bought into what we were doing, was able to find himself in a starting role at an early age and played as many snaps as he [could]. That’s surviving the storm in the middle there quite a bit.”last_img read more

Viewer’s guide: No Trojans? No problem

first_imgWith USC football resting, the team will likely spend some of Saturday watching the important games of the weekend. Here’s a list of a few games that could hold special interest for the Trojans, not to mention the country.Wisconsin at No. 9 Ohio State, 12:30 p.m., ABC.Ohio State rebounded well following its loss to the Trojans in early September, and have crept closer to returning to the No. 8 ranking that it held just before USC handed the Buckeyes their first loss.The Buckeyes hope to avoid suffering the same fate twice as they welcome Wisconsin to the Horseshoe for an important Big Ten matchup.The Badgers are hovering around the top-25 rankings, and a win in Columbus on Saturday would definitely turn the attention of the voters towards an unbeaten Wisconsin team.No. 3 Alabama at No. 20 Mississippi, 12:30 p.m. CBS.Before the season started, this looked like a potential matchup of two unbeaten, top-five SEC teams going at it to make a statement in a tight SEC race. Instead, that game will be in the state to the southwest of Mississippi, but the game is still important in the national college football picture.Alabama, talented on both sides of the ball and undefeated, picked up right where it left off last SEC regular season, just before two losses to Florida and Utah sent the Crimson Tide sliding down the rankings.Mississippi, which rose to No. 4 in the country until a loss to South Carolina last week derailed the team, is still dangerous while led by quarterback Jevan Snead. Ole Miss will have to defeat the Tide if it hopes to re-enter the national title picture with one loss, something the Trojans can relate to.No. 1 Florida at No. 4 LSU, 5 p.m., CBS.Quick. If the BCS rankings were released today, what team would the rest of the country be chasing at No. 1?If you said the Florida Gators, you would be surprisingly wrong. In fact, a quick Google search of “projected BCS” reveals that not only do the Gators sit behind one team, but behind two — Alabama and then LSU.But this Saturday, two teams, who both would sit above the Trojans (projected No. 7) if the rankings were released, face off in Baton Rouge in the biggest game of the week.The questions leading up to the SEC battle in Louisiana will be about quarterback Tim Tebow. After suffering a severe concussion two weeks ago against Kentucky, Tebow remains a game-time decision. If Tebow is unable to play, the Gators must turn to unproven redshirt sophomore John Brantley.LSU is coming off a strong victory over Georgia last weekend, in which its anemic-for-an-SEC team average of 321.6 yards per game was increased by a 368-yard game — including 156 rushing — in the win.last_img read more