As the first few carries moved toward a 30-touch afternoon, Anthony Davis looked like he was in as good or greater physical condition than anyone on the field in Wisconsin's win over Illinois Saturday. This was despite the fact that—or perhaps because of the fact that—he missed three full games while recovering from an injured eye.
"My legs were definitely a lot fresher than the rest of those guys," Davis said. "Maybe that did help."
Davis was sore on Sunday, of course.
"It was a good kind of sore," he said. "It was a happy sore, put it like that."
Davis gained 250 yards on his 30 touches Saturday.
"I think Anthony is probably as good as there is in the country when he's healthy," Illinois coach Ron Turner said Tuesday. "He's very quick, great vision, great acceleration through the hole and excellent balance. We missed some tackles and you look at the film—we did everything right—and he just had great strength and was able to come out of there."
Not a bad warm-up for the Badgers' battle at Ohio State this week.
"We didn't look at last week as a warm-up for Anthony," Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez said. "It was an important game and he was declared healthy, and he was healthy, and it's nice to have one of those under your belt. I think Anthony got stronger as the game went on and I think had a better feel as the game went on. And, you know, he's going to have to be at his best this week."
"I think there was definitely a transition period, just getting back into game shape," Davis said. "I had only played I think 26 snaps up until that point. I guess the biggest transition has been getting back into game shape and adjusting to the speed of the game."
Davis was in fine shape last week. He will certainly be a focal point of what is expected to be a defensive struggle Saturday. Yet Davis is taking the road trip in stride.
"I take the same approach to this game as I did last game," Davis said. "Just let the game come to me, relax and just try to beat them, play good football."
Davis bringing ‘fresh legs' to Columbus
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