Badger Nation's Five Keys to Victory

Badger Nation's Brad Fedie takes his look at the Five Keys to Victory against the Ohio State Buckeyes, where the winner will take over sole possession of first place in the rugged Big Ten Conference.

1, Pryor Planning

As Pryor goes, so does the OSU offense. If Pryor struggles, than the Buckeyes will find it hard to score points. The Badgers big defensive struggles have been with the deep ball, but Pryor has yet to show consistency throwing it long. If the Badgers can keep pressure on him to throw a few ill advised passes, a weakness could turn into a strength.

2, Clay's Big Test

John Clay broke out in a big way with the open of the Big Ten season, and the return of smash mouth football has been a big part of the Badgers success. Ohio State counters with the nation's best defense and the 10th best run defense. Getting Clay going early will help the Badgers wear down the outstanding d-line a bit and hopefully take advantage of the injuries Ohio State has had.

3, Big 'shoe Diaries

Ohio Stadium is just a little bigger than TCF...if you consider double to be little. Combine that with the fact that the horseshoe probably won't be 25% Badger fans, and you have a bit more hostility in the atmosphere. The Badgers have to try to silence the crowd early, as hard as that may be.

4, In-Saine in the Membrane

With Dan Herron out, Brandon Saine is the man (not named Pryor at least) in the OSU backfield. The Badgers did a good job stopping Duane Bennett off of his three touchdown game, pushing Minnesota to look to other, also unsuccessful, options in the backfield. Stopping the Ohio State running backs will help put even more pressure on Pryor to force plays and could create some key turnovers.

5, Return Engagement

The Badgers made things a little more difficult for themselves by allowing Troy Stoudemire to run all over them on kick returns. Borland and Hartmann have to get back to making the big hits right away and taking down kick returners before they have the chance to get to the outside.

Fearless Prediction:

The Badgers have had a great season so far, and a win sure would help their Big Ten title chances and gain them some national respect. Easier said that done. Even though Wisconsin matches up well against the OSU offense, the strength of the Buckeye defensive line could give the Badgers and John Clay fits. Wisconsin keeps it close and Tolzien has a solid game, but the home field advantage tips the game towards Ohio State.

Ohio State 27, Wisconsin 20

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