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The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Evridge can’t lead Badgers to comeback victory

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Last week, it was an incomplete pass in the game’s final seconds that sealed a loss for Wisconsin. Saturday, it was an interception that ended the team’s hopes for good.

Trailing by three points with under a minute left, quarterback Allan Evridge had his pass picked off by Ohio State’s Malcolm Jenkins as Wisconsin lost 20-17 at Camp Randall Stadium.


“It’s extremely difficult,” Evridge said. “We let another one slip away, and we can’t have it back.”

The Badgers (3-2, 0-2 Big Ten) held a lead late against the Buckeyes (5-1, 2-0 Big Ten), but OSU’s quarterback Terrelle Pryor scored on an 11-yard run with 1:08 seconds left to give Ohio State the game-winning score.

Wisconsin began its final possession with 1:03 left on the clock at its own 19-yard line, needing only a field goal to tie, but on the drive’s first play, the game slipped out of the team’s grasp.

“I just dropped back and didn’t want to take a sack, so I was trying to check it down and just didn’t see Jenkins,” Evridge said. “That’s my job and I have to see him. … It’s just frustrating.”

Against Michigan a week ago, Wisconsin also found itself in a similar situation needing to score on a last-minute drive, and the team was able to score a touchdown before failing to convert a two-point conversion.

“I was extremely confident taking the field,” Evridge said of the final drive. “It’s a situation I usually thrive in, so it’s even more frustrating that it was a pick on the first play and didn’t even give us an opportunity.”

Wisconsin was trailing 13-10 in the third quarter, but P.J. Hill ran for a 2two-yard score on third-and-goal to give the Badgers the lead with 6:31 left to play.

Led by Pryor, the Buckeyes were able to mount one last scoring drive. But it almost didn’t get very far.

Facing third-and-six at its own 24-yard line, Pryor was able to complete a 19-yard pass to Brian Hartline. On the next play, Pryor fumbled, but was able to recover the ball.

“Every time you’re close and they convert, it’s painful,” defensive end O’Brien Schofield said.

Later, Hartline fumbled the ball after catching a 27-yard pass, but the Buckeyes were once again able to recover.

“Luck wasn’t on our side today,” linebacker Jaevery McFadden said. “But we still had some chances to make some plays defensively.”

The drive came to a close when Pryor scored on second-and-eight when he scrambled to his left for an 11-yard touchdown. There had been some confusion among the Badger defenders as the play was being set up, and the team felt that contributed to the breakdown.

“[Ohio State] switched up and went quarterback option in second- and- long,” head coach Bret Bielema said. “And, obviously, there wasn’t anybody to tackle the quarterback.”

Leading up to the game, the Badgers had stressed playing sound defense for four full quarters following a second-half collapse at Michigan last weekend. Ohio State’s late touchdown proved that work still needs to be done.

“That’s basically what we’ve been preaching since the loss at Michigan — a solid four-quarter game,” McFadden said. “I think we were doing that, just the last two minutes broke down. I guess we’re getting closer and closer to that four-quarter game, but obviously we didn’t do it today.”

The defense had come up with a big stand earlier in the game, holding the Buckeyes to a field goal that tied the game 10-10 when Ohio State had a first- and- goal at the Wisconsin 2-yard line.

Wisconsin went into halftime with a lead 10-7 lead after Philip Welch kicked a 20-yard field goal as time expired in the first half. But tThe team may have missed an opportunity to make it a touchdown, though.

With only one timeout left, Evridge spiked the ball to stop the clock with five seconds remaining after completing a 35-yard pass to Kyle Jefferson to the Ohio State 3-yard line. Instead of taking one shot at a score, thoughhowever, the Badgers settled on a field goal attempt.

“I almost thought about running a play,” Bielema said, “but just didn’t have enough confidence in what we were trying to accomplish.”

The Badgers’ first score of the game came on a 9-yard touchdown pass that capped off a 15- play, 91-yard drive.

Ohio State got on the board first when running back Chris Wells scored on a 33-yard run on the game’s opening possession.

Wisconsin was once again plagued by missed tackles and dropped passes in its second loss of the season.

“We’re not a good enough a football team to survive basic fundamental miscues,” Bielema said.

The loss snapped a 16-game home winning streak for the Badgers that dated back to the 2005 season.

“A loss is terrible, period,” Schofield said. “But when you lose in front of your fans. … Aat you’re house, it hurts more than anything.”

The loss also leaves Wisconsin with an 0-2 record in Big Ten play for the first time since the 2002 season.

Things aren’t getting any easier for the Badgers either, as No. 6 Penn State comes to Madison next week with an undefeated record.

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