Russell Wilson: Are Wisconsin Badgers Favorites to Win the National Title?

James Brown@@chasingballgameSenior Analyst IJune 28, 2011

Russell Wilson: Are Wisconsin Badgers Favorites to Win the National Title?

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    Russell Wilson is heading to Wisconsin and that will make the Badgers legitimate contenders for the national championship.

    Wilson made his announcement in an interview with ESPN's "College Football Live" on Monday. Wilson announced that he choose the Badgers over the Auburn Tigers. This is a major coup for a Big Ten team that is overflowing with talent and Wilson could be the edge the Badgers need to win it all this year.  

Wilson Could Start

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    Wilson is a dual threat quarterback that was essentially a free agent in college football. He is a multi-sport star that left the Colorado Rockies minor league system to suit up for the Badgers.

    Soon after the announcement was made, Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema announced that Wilson will compete for the starting quarterback spot on the team.

    For the Badgers, Wilson’s announcement could not come at a better time.

Badger Quarterback: Help Wanted

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    The Badgers were in between quarterbacks and looking for a signal caller that could replace starter Scott Tolzien. On a run-first offense, Tolzien was a very productive and safe option for a team that did not rely on big plays from the quarterback.

    Now if Wilson starts, the Badgers offense will have a new dimension. Wilson presents a new wrinkle in an already proficient offense. He can create big plays and with his quick feet or his accurate arm.

    Another great feature of Wilson under center is that he will make other players around him better.

Dynamic Duo Is Now Better

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    Montee Ball and James White are two superstars that were the feature of a run-heavy Wisconsin offense.

    Last year the defenses were able to stack the box and focus on the run but it didn’t matter. Behind a towering offensive line and a bruising rushing attack, the Badgers moved the ball on the ground with relative ease.

    The acquisition of Wilson will give the defense another threat to be concerned with. This could make the dynamic duo of Ball and White even better as Wilson will keep opposing defenses honest.

    Wilson will also help a senior get his just due.

Toon It Up

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    Senior wide receiver Nick Toon is a special player for the Badgers.

    Toon is one of the best wide receivers on the Badgers and when healthy he is a deadly receiving threat. On a team that focuses on the run, it’s hard to stand out as a pass catching threat, but if he stays healthy, Toon could have a monster year.

    Wilson will look for a go-to-guy and Toon could be that player. If the Badgers mix in more passing it could also save Toon some bruises from constant run blocking.   

    With Wilson under center, look for a superstar season by Toon. Wilson will help the Badgers in another important category that will be the difference between winning and losing the big games.

Play It Safe

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    The Wisconsin Badgers were famous for their turnover margin in 2010 as they ranked second to Ohio State in the Big Ten standings.  

    Bringing a mobile quarterback to a team may seem like a recipe for a few turnovers, but not with Wilson.

    As a member of the North Carolina State Wolfpack, Wilson threw for over 8,000 yards with 76 touchdowns and just 26 interceptions.

    Wilson is a smart player that does not haphazardly fling the ball around the field. This will make him popular among the teammates and the fan base.

Who Is Wilson?

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    Russell Wilson never received credit for his outstanding play at North Carolina State, but that didn’t matter to him.

    Wilson put up some great numbers but playing in a section of the country that is dominated by SEC hype, Wilson often went unnoticed.  

    In his last season as a member of the Wolfpack he accumulated 3,563 yards and tossed 28 touchdowns to just 14 interceptions. In his final game he led the team to a Champs Bowl victory over the No. 22 ranked West Virginia mountaineers.

    Wilson tore it up on the ground as he amassed over 400 yards on the ground, while scoring nine touchdowns.

    Wilson also has intangibles that will be vital, if he plans on leading the Badgers to a national championship.

More Than Just Numbers

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    Wilson will fit into the Wisconsin program because of other reasons besides his numbers.

    While the rest of college football is surrounded by players breaking rules to get perks for playing in college football (I am talking to you Ohio State), Wilson is an all-around good person.

    He is a proven leader on and off the field. He takes the game seriously and he leads by example by making every meeting and working hard on every down. He will immediately be welcomed in the Badger’s locker room and become a leader on the team.

    With Wilson under center, the sky is the limit for this team. The Badgers have now become one of the favorites in college football to win a National Championship.

    James Brown is a B/R Featured Columnist. Feel free to contact James at