553 – combined rushing yards for Indiana and Wisconsin last week…and they both lost. The adage that the key winning games is the ability run the ball on offense and stop the run on defense didn't prove true for either team last week. Indiana lost to Central Michigan 37-34 despite outgaining the Chippewas on the ground 272-37. Wisconsin was every bit as dominant on the ground in its 25-24 loss to Michigan State, as it owned a 281-25 edge over the Spartans. While those big running numbers didn't amount to much last weekend, IU should expect to see the Badgers pound the ball Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Wisconsin ranks second in the Big Ten and 20th nationally in rushing offense (200.3/game), while Indiana is fourth in the league and 34th nationally with 180.6 yards/game.
5 - combined career starts for both of Saturday's likely starting quarterbacks, Ben Chappell and Dustin Sherer. Sherer, a fourth-year junior from Hamilton Heights (Ind.) H.S., replaced Allan Evridge as the team's starter in the fourth week of Big Ten play. His play has been spotty at best, completing 54-of-106 throws for 627 yards and three touchdowns, and he's been intercepted four times. Chappell, meanwhile, replaced an injured Kellen Lewis three weeks ago against Iowa, and he's 70-of-135 for 889 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions. Lewis started against Central Michigan, but re-injured his ankle against the Chippewas and is questionable for this weekend's game.
15.8 - points per game for the Indiana offense during Big Ten games, ranking it last in the conference. A year ago the Hoosiers averaged 26.0 points/game in league contests and scored 27 or more points in six of their eight Big Ten games. This season has been a different story, as Indiana has reached 27 points only once in conference games (29 vs. Michigan State) and it has been held to 13 points or less three times. The biggest reason for those struggles is the inability to do much of anything on 3rd down – IU is converting a league worst 23.9 percent of its third downs in Big Ten games (17-of-71), compared to its 40.5 percent success rate a year ago.
7 - games this season that Wisconsin has held a lead in the fourth quarter. Four of those ended in Badger wins, but Coach Bret Bielema's team coughed up late leads against Michigan, Ohio State and Michigan State. The Badgers' tailspin started in the Big Ten opener, when Michigan scored 20 points during a 5:16 span in the fourth quarter to overcome a 19-0 deficit and win 27-25. The following week OSU's Terrelle Pryor scored with 1:08 remaining to give the Buckeyes a come-from-behind 20-17 win, and then this past weekend Michigan State overcame an 11-point deficit in the final 8:13 to win 25-24. While that might sound like good news, Indiana has been more inept in the fourth quarter, getting outscored 67-10 this season during the game's final 15 minutes.
452 – rushing yards for Badger redshirt freshman tailback John Clay in Big Ten games, which leads the team. Most expected veteran P.J. Hill to once again carry the workload this season, but a leg injury as well as Clay's success has resulted in split carries for the two tailbacks. Clay has rushed for 288 yards in his last three games, including a 14-carry, 111-yard effort on Saturday against Michigan State. Hill also had a big game against the Spartans as he carried 20 times for 106 yards, marking the first time Wisconsin has had two runners go over 100 yards since 2005.
What's coming up:
On Monday – Five Numbers to Note
On Tuesday Four Names to Know
On Wednesday – Three Key Match-Ups
On Thursday – Two Big Concerns
On Friday – One Bold Prediction
WISCONSIN: Five Days and Counting
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