Illinois came into this game wondering how on earth they would matchup against this powerful Badgers team. The game opened with a methodical Wisconsin drive. The Badger Running Backs were seemingly 5 yards up field before any Illini defender was able to touch them. It began to get very frustrating as the Badger's were seemingly picking up every 3rd down in sight. The Illini defense was playing a 4-4 primarily and sending everybody to try and combat the counter and run to the left, but to no avail. The Illini defense would eventually force the Badger's to throw, but Illini defenders would drop a total of 3 picks on the very first drive of the game. I'm talking thrown right at them type picks. The Badger's would eventually punch it into the endzone to go up 7-0. The Illini came into the game with a focus on not committing turnovers. The Illini received the kick and was forced to punt after 3 conservative plays. The Illini would punt to Wisconsin and it seemed like a rewind of the very 1st drive as Wisconsin continued the run to the left with great success. When the Illini defense was able to stop the run the Badger's simply hit for big passes. The Illini defense would only drop 1 pick on this drive and held strong to force a field goal. 10-0 Badgers That is when I finally told myself that if I was going to win this game it was going to have to be through the air. The Badger defensive and offensive lines are just light years better than that of the Illini and it suddenly became clear that playing "smashmouth" with this team was not in my best interest. The Illini came out in Shotgun and was able to change the flow of the game. The Illini offense began to get rhythm and finally seemed to be fighting. The Illini would score to make it 10-7. Badgers The Illini would kick off to the Badgers and much the same as the other drives matriculated the ball down the field again with the help of a dropped pick and was able to punch the ball in with 34 seconds. I had called my 1st timeout with about 39 seconds left with the idea that I could get in range for a field goal. Unfortunately for me, that means I basically have to get into the 'Redzone" because my kicker is brutal. The Badgers would again score to make it 17-7 Badgers With 34 seconds left the Badger's kicked off and allowed the Illini decent field position. The Illini quickly moved down the field and with 17 seconds left found a wide open receiver over the middle for an inconceivable touchdown. 17-14 Badgers That was huge as the Illini were set to receive the 2nd half kick! The second half started much the same, as the Illini were now in a very good rhythm, and would score quickly to go up 21-17 Illini I finally had the lead and I though to myself that maybe the Badger's were starting to feel a little pressure for the first time in the game. I was wrong. The Badger's again plowed down the field to make the score 24-21 Badgers The Illini received the kick knowing full well that they needed a score. Note: (I have learned to bring my man in motion to see if his defense is in man or zone in order to dictate the proper receiver to throw the ball too) This time I brought my WR in motion and his DB stayed so I figured zone and I made up my mind to go to the TE. The play looked good from the beginning, but his DE suddenly broke through the line. I sprinted to the left and threw the ball as I was getting hit. The most perfect "lollipop" floated downfield and right into the arms of my "wide-open" TE. He rumbled and stumbled down the sideline for a 68 yard TD pass and broke 3 tackles inside the 10 yard line to boot. Somebody must have been hitting strip pretty bad! 28-24 Illini The Illini again kick off to the Badger's and you just need to read some of my previous post. Wisconsin storms downfield again inside of my 10 yard line. Only this time was different! On 3rd and Goal from the 4 I called that Nickel defense where everybody drops except the 2 DT's. I stayed on my MLB because what usually happens when I call that defense is that everyone is covered, but the QB simply runs up the middle for a 1st down or a TD. I then changed my MLB from coverage to spy. Sure enough the played happened just as I thought as the Badger QB was trying to get a "cheapie" and was tackled and nearly stripped of the ball at the 4 yard line. 4th down! The Badgers kick a field goal 28-27 Illini The Illini receive the kick knowing that time was starting to become a factor and a TD would force the Badger's to score and go for 2. The Illini offense came out firing and now with a softened up Badger defense were starting to experience a little success on the ground. The Illini mixed the pass and run and were again able to score. 35-27 Illini I began to see the light at the end of the "Tunnel". The Badger offense then turned to the pass and Mr. Lewis was showing off why he is the best Sophomore in the country. Wisconsin again moved the ball down field and were at my 30 yard line. The Badger's would again drop back to throw this time downfield to Lewis who was 1on1 against an Illini defender. The ball was under thrown which allowed my DB to pick off the pass. Hip-Hip Hooray finally caught one after dropping 6 picks during the course of the game. My DB returned the ball up field and the Illini started to feel as if they might win the game. 35-27 Illini I then told myself that it is time to try and run some clock. I came out in a run formation and the Badger's quickly moved his line and backers to sell out againt he run. I changed the direction of the run and "Boom!" The Illini RB ran through two perfect blocks and up field for what seemed like an 80 yard TD. 42-27 Illini The Illini would have to sweat out the last 2:30, but were able to walk away with a 42-35 win! Go Illini!