Wisconsin tabbed for rematch with Virginia in 2013 Big Ten/ACC Challenge

MADISON, Wis. – Last season Wisconsin and Virginia squared off for the first time in Big Ten/ACC Challenge history. In 2013, the two teams will play the rematch as the Badgers travel to Charlottesville, Va. in the 15th-annual Big Ten/ACC Challenge presented by wpid-8358801.jpeg Dick’s Sporting Goods, it was announced Wednesday.

 The Badgers and Cavaliers will play the second night of competition on Wednesday, Dec. 4. Game time and  television network have yet to be determined.  Wisconsin will be looking to avenge a 60-54 loss when the two teams meet in the 2013 challenge. UW is 6-8 all-time in the Challenge, recording victories in three of the last five seasons.

 The Badgers trail only Illinois (7) for the most victories among Big Ten teams. Wisconsin’s winning percentage (.429) is tied for fifth behind Illinois (.500), Ohio State (.500) Purdue (.500) and Michigan State (.462).  The Badgers are coming off their 15th-consecutive appearance in the NCAA tournament after earning 23 victories in 2012-13, the ninth-highest win total in school history.

 Virginia, which is 8-5 overall in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge and owns a 5-1 home record, is coming off an appearance in the 2013 NIT. Led by former UW assistant Tony Bennett, the Cavaliers finished 23-12 overall after suffering a 75-64 loss to Iowa in the quarterfinals of the tournament.

 Next season’s matchup promises to be a defensive showcase as Virginia and Wisconsin finished fifth and seventh, respectively, in the country last season in scoring defense. The Badgers yielded just 55.9 points per game, while the Cavaliers gave up only 55.6 points per contest.

 The ACC won the first 10 Challenges, but the Big Ten is unbeaten in the last four after last season’s inter-conference duel ended in a tie.




Tuesday, Dec. 3

  • Florida State at Minnesota

  • Illinois at Georgia Tech

  • Indiana at Syracuse

  • Michigan at Duke

  • Notre Dame at Iowa

  • Penn State at Pittsburgh


Wednesday, December 4

  • Boston College at Purdue

  • Maryland at Ohio State

  • Miami, FL at Nebraska

  • North Carolina at Michigan State

  • Northwestern at North Carolina State

  • Wisconsin at Virginia

Dekker Big Ten Freshman of the Week


MADISON, Wis. —  Following his 13-point, four-rebound outing in Wisconsin’s win over No.12/13 Illinois on Saturday, freshman Sam Dekker earned the Big Ten’s freshman of the week award, the conference announced on Monday.

 The Sheboygan, Wis., native went 5-for-9 (.556) from the field, including a 3-of-7 (.428) effort from beyond the arc during the win. The freshman has scored in double figures in six of the Badger’s last nine games and is playing a vital role in UW’s first 3-0 start in Big Ten play since the 2008-09 season.

 Dekker, who is fourth on the team averaging 9.3 points per game, is the first Wisconsin freshman to earn the award since the Big Ten debuted the honor in 2010-11.  Dekker ranks sixth in the Big Ten, shooting 41.8 percent (23-55) from 3-point range and is fifth among all Big Ten freshmen in scoring.

Ball Wins Doak Walker Award


LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Montee Ball will finish his college career on top of a number of lists in the record books. He’ll also finish it on top of the list of the nation’s top running backs.

The Wisconsin senior was named the best running back in college football Thursday when he was presented with the Doak Walker Award during The Home Depot College Football Awards at Walt Disney World. He also was named to the Walter Camp All-America team for the second-consecutive season.

Ball finished ahead of fellow Doak Walker finalists Kenjon Barner of Oregon and Johnathan Franklin of UCLA for the honor, which has been presented to the nation’s most outstanding running back each year since 1989.

A finalist for the second-consecutive season, Ball becomes Wisconsin’s second Doak Walker Award winner, joining 1999 winner Ron Dayne.

He is the sixth Big Ten player to earn the award, and the first since Iowa’s Shonn Greene in 2008.

Wisconsin has boasted a Doak Walker finalist each of the last three seasons, with John Clay earning a finalist nod in 2010 before Ball’s back-to-back nominations. UW has had eight Doak Walker semifinalists over the past 15 seasons.

Ball is the NCAA’s all-time leader in touchdowns with 82 and also holds the NCAA career record for rushing touchdowns with 76. He ranks in a tie for fourth all-time among Big Ten players with 5,040 career rushing yards and became the 17th player in FBS history to surpass 5,000 yards.

Ball has rushed for 200-plus yards four times in his career and has 25 100-yard rushing games to his credit, including nine this season. He ranks third nationally this season with 1,730 rushing yards and ranks in a tie for fourth with 21 rushing touchdowns.

The two-time defending Ameche-Dayne Big Ten Running Back of the Year award winner, Ball led the Big Ten in rushing and scoring during conference play to become the first player to lead the league in scoring in three consecutive seasons since at least 1939.

Named the Grange-Griffin Big Ten Championship Game MVP for his three-touchdown performance in UW’s 70-31 win over Nebraska in the 2012 Big Ten Football Championship Game, Ball is a finalist for the Chicago Tribune’s Silver Football award for the second-consecutive year. He won the award presented annually to the Big Ten’s MVP last season.

Ball will be honored at the 2012 Doak Walker Award Banquet on Feb. 15 in Dallas.

Abrederis Named Semifinalist for the Burlsworth Trophy


MADISON, Wis. — The latest in a long line of walk-on success stories at Wisconsin, junior WR Jared Abbrederis was announced Tuesday as one of 10 semifinalists for the Burlsworth Trophy.

The award is presented annually to the most outstanding player that began his career as a walk-on.

Abbrederis fits the bill as a former walk-on who was awarded a scholarship prior to the start of the 2012 season. The Wautoma, Wis., native is the Badgers’ leading receiver and ranks second in the Big Ten, averaging 72.9 receiving yards per game. He ranks fourth among active FBS players with an average of 16.8 yards per reception for his career and is tied for sixth in UW history with 12 career touchdown catches.

Earlier this season, Abbrederis became the first UW player to record three consecutive 100-yard receiving games since Lee Evans accomplished the feat in 2003. Abbrederis had 147 yards vs. UTEP, 142 yards at Nebraska and 117 yards vs. Illinois.

Despite missing the second half of UW’s game vs. Oregon State and the entire Utah State game, Abbredreis ranks fourth in the Big Ten with 729 receiving yards this season.

Abbrederis is one of 73 walk-ons who have earned a scholarship at Wisconsin since former coach Barry Alvarez began emphasizing the walk-on program in 1990. He is one of seven former walk-ons on the Badgers’ current roster who are regular starters for UW this season.

The Burlsworth Trophy is named for Brandon Burlsworth, who walked on at Arkansas and developed into a three-year starter and All-American for the Razorbacks. Burlsworth was killed in a car accident shortly after being selected by Indianapolis in the 1999 NFL Draft.

Three finalists will be selected from the semifinalist pool on Nov. 27, and the winner will be announced Dec. 3 at a banquet in Springdale, Ark.

Fans can vote for their choice from Nov. 20-26 by logging on to www.burlsworthtrophy.com. The fan votes will be combined with the votes of a selection committee to determine the finalists.

%d bloggers like this: