Bielema Addresses Penn State

In preparation for the Badgers' game against Penn State this Saturday, UW head coach Bret Bielema took part in a teleconference on Tuesday, addressing the challenges Penn State presents and what the Badgers have to prepare for.

Comparing Penn State's offense to 2005: "I see a lot of similarities. I do think from a physical standpoint, you're talking about a guy who was in his upper years of college (former PSU quarterback Michael Robinson), obviously (Daryll) Clark is not. The way that they schemed and grew as the year went on, you've seen in a few ballgames now. Now that they've opened Big Ten play, different plays arise within their offensive schemes, as well as their personnel. I think they're doing a great job and there is some similarity back to 2005, in my opinion."

On Penn State's offensive line: "I have the utmost respect (for them). I thought last year's game, in particular, Penn State's offensive line jumped out to me before the game and then after the game. Just the way they play. I really think their center, if there's a better one in college football I'd like to see him. I think he's a pretty good football player. Just the way they're able to get on blocks and stay on blocks. They do a great job of securing the point of attack as well as getting up to the next level and throwing some blocks downfield as well. So it's going to be a tremendous challenge for our defensive front."

On Penn State's defense: "Obviously when you're No. 1 (in the Big Ten) in total defense and No.1 (in the Big Ten) in rush defense and you're doing some good things at all positions. But up front I really like their play. I think (Josh) Gaines is playing extremely well. I thought their two defensive tackles, or anybody, they've had a variety of different people lining up in there, in the inside positions, have been very, very productive for them. Their linebackers, even though they obviously lost a couple good football players, I was surprised when I threw on the film and saw them playing as well as they are. Then on the back end, they bring their DBs into run fits. (Anthony) Scirrotto has played a lot of football. I think they're just a very, very balanced football team. They're not bringing as many pressures as we've seen maybe in the past, but yet they bring enough that brings you concerns."

On Penn State's running game: "(Evan) Royster obviously is playing pretty good football and then the combination of him and (Stephfon) Greene popping in there, it's a unique challenge. You've got to be aware of where people are at, understand what they're trying to do. Then the thing that balances it all out is just that wide receiving corps. Obviously (Derrick) Williams and (Deon) Butler and (Jordan) Norwood, all three of those guys bring different plays to the table but they use them very wisely in their schemes."

On the difference in Penn State's offense from the past couple of years to this season: "I think it's just a sign of a coaching staff doing a great job of using their players' strengths. There's definitely a difference in their quarterback than there was a year ago. As someone alluded to earlier when Robinson was there, it kind of reminds me of that offense. Just being able to use their quarterback and what his abilities are. I see with Clark, I see a really calming presence. He's a guy that seems to understand. I remember during our bye week I was sitting, watching the Penn State game live with the broadcasters and it was towards the end of the game and he got a little dinged up and he basically was asking the sidelines, even thought the game was well in hand, to get back into the football game. So he's got a competitive nature to him that is very, very apparent from his presence on the field."

On UW's focus the rest of the season: "At one point during the season, we do talk about preseason goals. We sit down and vote on them and talk about them as a team and as a staff. But once we get in season we have a little motto within our program, we've got it plastered all over the place. It's on our shorts. It's everywhere that we can. It's just a 1-0 mentality . My first year here as a defensive coordinator we really brought it aboard. You use it for win streaks and you definitely have to use it in bad situations like we're in now. No matter what happened this past Saturday, all we do is have an opportunity to prepare the best we can this week to go 1-0 this week . Regardless of what happens this Saturday, win or lose, we move onto the next day. It's a way to kind of keep the season working bit by bit, week by week, rather than trying to go to the bigger picture. I do know that I've heard some of our guys say it."

Is there a sense of urgency with the team?: "I think there's an urgency to play good football. One thing we're trying to do and I told the team on Sunday this week, is yes we're playing Penn State but for us to be able to have success we have to execute better at Wisconsin football regardless of who we're playing against. So that's been the emphasis that we've had during the course of the week and I think the kids are buying in."


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