Notes: Day One in the Books

Following the opening practice of fall camp, Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema addresses the media Monday, talking about Montee Ball, Danny O'Brien and snazzy new uniforms for UW's road game at Nebraska.

MADISON - Only one day into fall camp and, as usual, Wisconsin football head coach Bret Bielema couldn't be more positive about his Badgers.

As he rattled off his normal updates concerning the roster, injuries and who stood out to him in practice, everyone was patiently waiting for him to address what UW fans are concerned about: Montee Ball.

Bielema still doesn't expect to get his Heisman candidate back for three more weeks, but is positive about Ball's chances of playing in the season opener against Northern Iowa Sept.1.

"I think there's a lot of things running through his head," Bielema said. "Anytime a situation happens like that you realize how fragile everything is."

With a police investigation into the situation, including the alleged fight that also occurred just days before Ball's incident, Bielema simply hopes to keep all distractions at a minimum.

Certainly, the recent events outside Camp Randall have created a small, unwanted buzz heading into fall camp, but Bielema believes they won't detract from his team's concentration unless they let it.

"I just think that it's being talked about," Bielema said. "Tomorrow when you get a chance to interview [the players] they're going to say ‘no comment,' so there's that distraction, but I think you choose your own distractions."

New quarterback in town

With Ball's recent injury has closely overlapped the beginning of camp, it has also overshadowed the arrival of Danny O'Brien.

The transfer quarterback is expected to be in a legitimate competition for the starting spot with fifth year senior Curt Phillips and redshirt freshman Joel Stave, according to Bielema.

"Day one, I think he's got a lot of respect, as you can see he has ability," Bielema said. "He really is a totally different personality than Russell (Wilson), but it's a totally different scenario."

Last year, Wilson joined a team that lacked a quarterback with any experience as Phillips and Jon Budmayr were out with injuries. This year O'Brien is largely expected to compete mainly with Phillips for the starting job, although Bielema is still watching Stave closely after his breakout spring camp.

A fresh look for Nebraska

Today, the athletic department unveiled Wisconsin's special uniforms for its Sept. 29 matchup at Nebraska. Nebraska is also wearing special, all red uniforms.

The Badgers will be sporting red helmets with black facemasks in addition to a red traditional W on all white, with a red pinstrip on their pants. These special uniforms are in line with breaking Bielema's usual no-nonsense when it comes to uniforms, which he readily admits.

"I am the anti-uni person, everybody realizes that," Bielema said. "There's not a lot of flavor to it. We tried to honor some of the teams of the past … really the only guy I was worried about, whether he liked them or not, was the AD. He didn't kibosh it."

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