Camp Randall Gets Two Night Games

After another nine wins season in the books, the national markets decide Wisconsin football is must-see television, doubling the Badgers home night games in 2008.

MADISON - As good as the Badgers have been over the last four years, recording a record of 40-11, Wisconsin has been even better at protecting its home turf.

Wisconsin's 25-1 home record since the start of the 2004 season is the second-best mark in the nation and have won 14 straight games at Camp Randall Stadium, the third-longest home winning streak in school history.

In night games, however, the Badgers have been even better, winning 20 of their last 21 night games, including its last six night games at Camp Randall Stadium, the most recent being a 17-13 triumph over Iowa last year.

With all that success in the minds of network executives, it's no surprise that Wisconsin will be facing its two biggest home opponents of the year under the lights.

Wisconsin will open its 2008 home conference season with a 7 p.m. night game against Ohio State on October 4 and one week later, will face Penn State in another 7 p.m. tilt.

"Any time we can have a night game at Camp Randall is something that can be a positive," head coach Bret Bielema said. "Fortunately, I think the networks have agreed with us in the past."

The Badgers are 17-50-5 against the Buckeyes all time, including 10-24-2 at home, including last year's 38-17 loss in Columbus when Ohio State was ranked number one. Before last year, however, Wisconsin had won three of four against Ohio State, including a 17-10 victory in 2003, the last time OSU came to Madison.

Wisconsin and Penn State have split the last four contests, with PSU winning 38-7 last year in Happy Valley. Wisconsin leads the all-time series 8-4 and in Madison 3-2.

While an opposing team can decline a home team's night game after a certain date, these games are now set in stone by the networks.

"The way the rules are, basically if there's a request by ESPN, ABC, CBS, whatever it is, if they come to terms and make a decision this early, no school can deny it, but after—like a couple years ago when we were going out to Penn State when some things were starting to happen—the school can refuse one way or the other," Bielema said. "What basically happens is that if it's going to be a home game, they accept and the other team declines. But at this time, they'll set out a certain number of night games and there's nothing anybody can do about it."

UW went undefeated at home for the second consecutive season in 2007. The last time the Badgers went two seasons without a home loss was 1950-51 (8-0-1).

A Big Ten contest will be featured during prime time in at least five of the nine weeks of intraconference play with all games appearing during prime time on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2.

2008 BIG TEN PRIME-TIME FOOTBALL GAMES

Sept. 27 - ILLINOIS at PENN STATE, 8 p.m. ET, ABC, ESPN or ESPN2

Oct. 4 - OHIO STATE at WISCONSIN, 7 p.m. CT, ABC, ESPN or ESPN2

Oct. 11 - PENN STATE at WISCONSIN, 7 p.m. CT, ESPN or ESPN2

Oct. 18 - MICHIGAN at PENN STATE, 4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN or ESPN2

Oct. 25 - PENN STATE at OHIO STATE, 8 p.m. ET, ABC, ESPN or ESPN2


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