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Indiana vs. Wisconsin: The History

Joe Robbins

There's no way of going about this one, or even sugar coating it. The Hoosiers haven't really been a threat to Wisconsin football outside of a few token years here or there in the last decade. Overall, Indiana's record against the Badgers comes to an unimpressive 18-39-2. Including losses in 15 of the last 20. Now that isn't Michigan or Penn State bad, but it certainly is not pretty.

Want to know how ugly it has been in the last decade? Wisconsin in the last 10 years (including 8 wins) has an average points scored of 47.7 points. The best defensive performance in that time came when Indiana held the Badgers to 29 points in a 32-29 win. Indiana in that same span is averaging 29.1 points. The scary part of that one being that it includes an insane 63 points scored in 2001 (we'll get to the bloody details of that one in a moment). Throw away that game where the Hoosiers scored 34 points higher than their average and Indiana is scoring only 22.8 points per game. That's not good when your average deficit over the last decade is 25 points.

Break those numbers down even tighter into the last three games and it gets scarier. I'm not going to go into too deep of details but the average game score is hovering around 14-68. Like the basketball team, Wisconsin just seems to be the bane of IU football's existence. We haven't put up a fight in 8 years and that was coming at a time when Wisconsin was not the Wisconsin it historically has been. Hopefully this time, with a high powered offense, it's different.

Indiana's biggest and best win over Wisconsin came once again during the Atwaan Randle-El years. You may be noticing a trend in these write ups that the last time we were of any significance in college football was when Randle-El was behind center. However, this big game in 2001 came not on the performance of Randle-El, though he certainly played well, it was RB Levron Williams. Williams rushed for a school-record six touchdowns in Indiana's defeat of Wisconsin by a score of 63-32 in Wisconsin. Williams ran for 280 yards at a clip of 14 yards a carry.

Some may remember this one for the pace at which the Hoosiers jumped all over Wisconsin. Indiana came out of the first huddle and dropped 32 points on the Badgers before the whistle signaling the end of the 1st quarter. Indiana scored three times to grab a 21-0 lead before the clock ticked down to single digits remaining in the quarter. A 6 yard touchdown run, 56 yard TD run, 3 yard TD run, blocked punt for a TD, and 4 yard TD pass put the Hoosiers in a position to grind Wisconsin down the rest of the game. Fortunately for Wisky, the kicking team was awful as they missed 3 extra points in that series. Indiana continued to roll in the game with Williams racking up 3 more TDs before the game ended. It was a historic beat down of epic proportions for the Hoosiers program.

Unfortunately that is only one of a handful of Indiana wins. There isn't much more to brag about for the Hoosiers football team. There was a string of 5 straight wins in the late eighties/early nineties that I bet were fun. Unfortunately there aren't many more positives. Hopefully, the defense can find some sort of mojo this Saturday to hold the Badgers to something south of 40. If that happens then there just might be a chance that we can tack up another W and bring this series a little closer.