Wisconsin Football: Why It's Big Ten Title or Bust for Badgers in 2012
The 2012 Wisconsin Badgers football team is going to be good; multiple All-Americans on both sides of the ball good. This Badgers team is on a different tier talent-wise than every other team in the conference. The offense is absolutely loaded, and the defense has multiple studs.
Not only is the team supremely talented, but outside circumstances have also helped the Badgers as well. The schedule isn't difficult, and most of the traditional Big Ten powers are down.
The Badgers are clearly in a position to win another Big Ten championship, and anything less should be considered a failure.
The Badgers Are the Most Talented Team in the Conference
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No one is as talented or as deep as Wisconsin is. The Badgers have the conference's best player in Heisman contender Montee Ball and the top receiver in Jared Abbrederis.
The defense has multiple stars in linebackers Chris Borland and Mike Taylor. Ricky Wagner has the potential to be another Badger lineman to be drafted in the first round of the NFL draft. Additionally, they have an incoming quarterback who could potentially be the best in the conference in Danny O'Brien.
The Badgers are the most complete team in the Big Ten and should represent the conference again in the Rose Bowl this year.
The Rest of the Big Ten Is Down
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Penn State is in the midst of a major scandal, and major sanctions are on the horizon. They are also breaking in a new coaching staff. Ohio State is still under NCAA sanctions from Jim Tressel's regime, and isn't as talented as the Badgers. They are also breaking in a new coaching staff.
Michigan State just graduated their star quarterback in Kirk Cousins and all of their top receivers. Iowa hasn't been in contention for a Big Ten championship in multiple years and won't be in the near future.
Nebraska lost multiple stars on defense and still has Taylor Martinez at quarterback. Michigan is the only traditional power that has the personnel to challenge the Badgers.
With only one team in the Big Ten that can seriously contend with the Badgers for a Big Ten championship, it would be a massive disappointment for the Badgers not to achieve back-to-back championships.
The Schedule Is Set Up for the Badgers to Succeed
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The Badgers' 2012 schedule is conducive to running the table.
The Badgers open with three cupcakes in a row in Oregon State, Utah State and UTEP. Additionally, Ohio State and Michigan State, the Badgers' toughest opponents, travel to Camp Randall this season, where Bret Bielema and the Badgers have been dominant.
Considering that the Badgers most difficult road games figure to be Nebraska and Purdue, a perfect regular season is a serious possibility.
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The Badgers are the best team in the Big Ten. The talent level is superior to every other team, and the coaching staff is among the best in the nation. The roster is littered with future NFL players, and both the offense and defense boast multiple All-American candidates.
For this Badgers team, anything less than winning the Big Ten Championship would be a massive disappointment.