2007 Wisconsin Football Preview
2007 Wisconsin football preview
2006 Record: 12-1, 7-1
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The defense will return seven starters this season. Bielema has a good situation considering he has starters returning throughout the entire defense. The defensive line will have three starters back, while the linebackers and secondary each have two starters back this year.
Senior DT Nick Hayden will be accompanied by junior Jason Chapman on the inside, and junior Matt Shaughnessy will provide pressure from his DE position. Senior Kurt Ware is the lone new starter, but the line should have enough experience to be dominant up front.
Juniors DeAndre Levy and Jonathan Casillas made nice strides last season settling in as starters and will give the Badgers a powerful punch at linebacker. Casillas finished with 83 tackles last year with 12.5 tackles for loss. Levy led the team with six sacks on 2006.
Sophomore Elijah Hodge will step in as the new starter in the middle.
Juniors Jack Ikegwuonu and Allen Langford will start at CB. Ikegwuonu is one of the top cover corners in the conference and Langford led the team with three interceptions last season. Their cohorts at safety will be new starters in sophomores Aubrey Pleasant and Shane Carter.
The Badgers may have the top kicking duo in the conference. Senior Taylor
Mehlhaff has had a good career at Wisconsin and showed last season he can hit
from long distance.
Senior P Ken DeBauche has a booming leg, but his average dropped two yards from his sophomore to junior season. He can still unleash big kicks and also can pin teams down by putting the ball inside the 20.
While the kicking game is set, the return game needs to show improvement. Despite poor numbers last season, the offense didn’t seem to be hurt by a lack of return yards. Even with plenty of weapons on offense, the returners need to provide better field position.
In just his second year leading the Badgers, Brett Bielema has his team primed for a run at the Big Ten Championship. This team has solid units on both offense and defense and has an excellent shot at starting out with nine wins before back-to-back battles with Ohio State and Michigan in November. One benefit of seeing the other top contenders for the conference title late in the season is that the offense should be able to settle in with either Donovan or Evridge at QB by that point. If the Badgers can sneak by Ohio State in Columbus, the Wolverines will be coming to a rowdy environment on November 10th.
Wisconsin Badgers 2007 Football Schedule
September 1 - Washington State
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