Wisconsin/Penn State pregame notes

The Badgers and Nittany Lions kick off at 4:47 p.m. Saturday

What: Penn State (2-1) at No. 20 Wisconsin (3-0)
When: 4:47 p.m. Central, Saturday, Sept. 25
Site: Camp Randall Stadium (81,318, FieldTurf)
Broadcasts: ESPN live TV coverage; 46-city Wisconsin Radio Network live radio coverage; Wisconsin Pubic Television tape-delayed broadcast at 10 p.m.

Wisconsin results to date
Home team in italics

Sept. 4—Wisconsin 34, Central Florida 6
Sept. 11—Wisconsin 18, UNLV 3
Sept. 18—Wisconsin 9, Arizona 7

Penn State results to date
Home team in italics

Sept. 4—Penn State 48, Akron 10
Sept. 11—Boston College 21, Penn State 7
Sept. 18—Penn State 37, Central Florida 13

Nittany Lions versus Wisconsin: The Badgers lead the all-time series 6-3, including a 4-3 edge since Penn State joined the Big Ten in 1993. The road team has won the last three games in the series. Wisconsin won in Happy Valley in 2001 (18-6) and 2003 (30-23). The Nittany Lions won 34-31 in Madison two years ago.

Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez is in his 15th season at UW. He has a 102-67-4 career record.

Penn State coach Joe Paterno is in his 39th season at the helm of the Nittany Lions. This is his 55th season as a member of Penn State's coaching staff. He has a 341-110-3 record.

  • Among teams that have played three games, Wisconsin leads the nation in total defense (201 yards per game) and scoring defense (5.3 points per game). Penn State is averaging 30.7 points and 465.3 total yards per game. The Badgers have allowed only one touchdown this season; the Nittany Lions have scored 13.

  • Penn State has lost six consecutive road games and seven consecutive games away from Beaver Stadium (including the 2003 Capital One Bowl). Wisconsin is just 5-11 in Big Ten home games in the last four seasons.

  • Beginning Saturday the Nittany Lions will face five consecutive ranked Big Ten opponents. Games against Minnesota, Purdue, Iowa and Ohio State follow Saturday's tilt with the Badgers.

  • Penn State has not opened its Big Ten season with a win since 1999. The Nittany Lions are 5-6 all-time in Big Ten openers, 3-2 on the road.

  • Wisconsin's win last week in Arizona was its 20th fourth-quarter come-from-behind victory in the Barry Alvarez era at UW and its first since a 24-17 win in last season's opener at West Virginia.

  • Badger opponents are averaging just 54.3 plays from scrimmage per game, the lowest number in the nation. Wisconsin has forced 15 three-and-outs on 35 opposing drives.

  • Alvarez and Paterno are two of just 12 coaches who have at least 90 wins at one Big Ten institution. Alvarez' 102 victories place him tenth on that list. Paterno is 11th—94 of his wins have come since the Nittany Lions entered the conference.

  • Penn State is ranked 15th nationally in total defense (268 yards per game) and No. 25 in scoring defense (14.7 points per game)

  • Wisconsin is No. 90 in total offense and No. 86 in scoring offense.

  • Penn State has turned it over 11 times in its last two games. Surprisingly, though, Boston College and Central Florida only managed 10 points off those turnovers and Penn State actually recorded a safety following one.

  • Badger punt returner Jim Leonhard needs just 96 yards to surpass Penn State alum Bruce Branch for the Big Ten's career record. Leonhard currently has 1,076 career punt return yards.

  • Wisconsin has been penalized an average of 26.7 yards per game this season, the second lowest tally in the nation.

  • Badger opponents have run the ball 95 times this year but only one run has gone for more than 20 yards.

  • Wisconsin is 8-6 in Big Ten openers under Alvarez.

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