The Official Wisconsin Pre-Game 2 Deep is out.
There are a couple of backup changes on the offense, and a lot of shuffling on special teams.
Everyone should now be aware of the suspension that effected the O-Line backups; Former Left Guard Donnie Baskin has moved to the right side backing up Matt Ulrich. He should get a lot of playing time, Matt is still backup center for the Cats.
Soph WR Mark Philmore [5-10 185 - left] has moved out to the Z- WR slot [for the injured junior Ashton Aiken]
Note: Backup Left Guard Greg Lutzen was the offensive Practice Player for the Indy game
Soph Safety Fred Tarver has assumed the backup role for Torri Stuckey. Senior Louis Ayeni was supposed to be available, but apparently is still questionable for Wisconsin.
Here's where the big changes happened:
1. Randy Walker announced Monday that Place Kicker Slade Larsheid had a sore hip flexor [not good for a place kicker] and was questionable for Saturday's game. He'd be replaced with Joel Howells if he can't go. You might ask about Brian Huffman, who had a 56 yard FG as a HS kicker -- Walker said that the "common wisdom" was that you don't use a PK as a punter.
2.The "rells" RS Sophomores, [#12] Derell Jenkins [right] and [#26] Terrell Jordan [left] have assumed the Kick Returning duties from last week's duo of Jason Wright and Jeff Backes.
3. Soph WR Mark Philmore, fresh off his big punt return against Indiana, takes over as the Punt Returner - CB Jeff Backes is still the backup there.
In past interviews, NU Coach Randy Walker has welcomed the opportunity to use some of his under classmen at the return positions - looks like he gets a chance to use some of that backup speed on special teams.
The change does slow down Jason Wright's pursuit of the Career All Purpose Yards mark at NU. So far he has 965 total yards for this season, 104 yard on kickoff returns. He's presently 10th on the list with 3124 yards, and with 5 games left was within striking distance of even Ricky Edwards' #3 ranked 3924 all purpose yards.
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