Schedule Tour: Northwestern

With less than a month to the start of the 2010 Wisconsin football season, Badger Nation goes game by game for an early breakdown of the opposition. The 12th game is Wisconsin's home finale against Northwestern, one of the three teams UW has put a star next to on its season schedule.

MADISON - With the Big Ten regular season trophy on site, Northwestern senior quarterback Mike Kafka unleashed a passing blitzkrieg that made all Wisconsin players, fans and coaches cringe.

Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald has things working in Evanston with the Wildcats, reaching a January 1 bowl game and nearly pulling off a nail biter against Auburn in the Outback Bowl. Now entering his fifth year, the two time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year is making his Alma Mater proud, and has his team headed toward the top half of the Big Ten Conference.

Thankfully for Wisconsin fans, Kafka won't be a part of the plans when the Wildcats visit Camp Randall for the regular season finale. Under center is expected to be 6-foot-1 junior quarterback Dan Persa, who will have his own rebuilding to do after Northwestern lost plenty of receivers and returns a running game that was far from brilliant.

While the offense loses key players, the defense, particularly the front seven, should be very good. Juniors Vince Browne and Kevin Watt will be solid on the line and with them teaming up senior linebackers Quentin Davie and Nate Williams, running the ball on the Cats will be tough.

Northwestern hasn't won a bowl game since the 1940s, but it only seems like a matter of time with Fitzgerald at the helm. A lot can change between now and November but with both teams most likely having a lot to play for in terms of postseason bowl implications, it's hard to not like Wisconsin in this game.

If you go

Date/Time - Saturday, November 27 at TBA

Arena – Camp Randall, Madison

Series – Wisconsin leads 55-33-5

Last Meeting – Northwestern beat Wisconsin, 33-31, November 14, 2009 in Evanston

Early Prediction - Wisconsin 34, Northwestern 24

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