WISCONSIN: Five Days and Counting

Bloomington - After back-to-back heartbreaking losses on the road, Indiana returns home to take on Wisconsin. Hoosier Nation begins its day-by-day preview of this weekend's match-up...

+9 - Indiana's turnover margin, which ranks first in the Big Ten and ninth nationally. Despite that stat, the Hoosiers are still the only team among the nation's top 15 in turnover margin that has a losing record. The reason? Indiana has largely been unable to take advantage of those takeaways. Against Iowa, Indiana had six takeaways but converted those opportunities into only 10 points. In contrast, Iowa had half as many takeaways but turned Ben Chappell's first two interceptions into touchdowns before running out the game clock following his third interception. Against Northwestern Indiana had a 3-0 edge in turnovers but failed to score any points on those subsequent drives. It's been a reoccurring problem this season, particularly in the losses. In those five games Indiana has 12 takeaways but has converted that into only 16 points (one touchdown, three field goals).

3 - special teams touchdowns for the Badgers this season. The most recent came on Saturday in Wisconsin's 37-0 win over Purdue when David Gilbert blocked a punt and Aaron Henry returned it seven yards for a touchdown. That was the Badgers' second blocked punt that was returned to a score, and Gilbert has been involved in both. Against Wofford, Gilbert recovered a Chris Borland blocked punt in the end zone for a score. The final special teams touchdown came on a fake field goal, as Chris Baragos scored on a nine-yard run against Ohio State three weeks ago. Indiana, meanwhile, has scored two special teams touchdowns – both on Ray Fisher kickoff returns for scores.

104.9 – rushing yards/game for Wisconsin tailback John Clay. Clay is the only Big Ten running back averaging 100 yards/game on the ground and he also leads the conference with 10 rushing touchdowns. He's coming off a huge game against Purdue, running for more than 100 yards in the opening half on his way to a 24-carry, 123-yard, three-touchdown afternoon against Purdue. Clay ranks 20th nationally in rushing and is easily the most prolific runner that Indiana has gone up against this season. The next best as far as rushing yards/game is Western Michigan's Brandon West who is averaging 91.6 yards/game and has scored seven times. Against Indiana, West was held to a season-low 36 yards on 15 carries.

16.5 – tackles for loss for Wisconsin defensive end O'Brien Schofield, ranking him first nationally. It's clearly been a breakout season for the fifth year senior, who entered his final campaign with only 48 tackles and 8.5 tackles for loss in his first three seasons in a Badger uniform. The 6'3", 248-pounder has been dominant against just about every team on the Wisconsin schedule, recording at least one tackle for loss in all but two games this season. He had a season-high four tackles for loss against Fresno State, and he had 3 ½ tackles for loss against both Ohio State and Minnesota (including two sacks in both games). In addition to his team-high 6 ½ sacks, Schofield also has five quarterback hurries and will present plenty of problems for Indiana's offensive line.

58 points Indiana has been outscored by in the second halves of the last two games, Indiana jumped to a 28-17 halftime lead against Northwestern and had a 21-7 edge over Iowa this past weekend, but Bill Lynch's team has been outscored 61-3 in the final 30 minutes of those two games. The Hoosiers are hoping to turn those fortunes around this weekend against Wisconsin, a team that has had some issues in the second halves of games. Coach Bret Bielema's team has outscored its foes 137-64 in the first halves of games, but it's been outscored 103-88 in the second halves. Those late struggles cost Wisconsin in its tow losses – the Badgers trailed Ohio State 14-10 and half before losing 31-13, and they led Iowa 10-3 at half but were outscored 17-0 and lost 20-10.

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

Peegs.com Top Stories