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Wisconsin Football Fans Let Out Massive Sigh of Relief After Win



Wisconsin badgers football quarterback Braedyn Locke

Trailing two touchdowns to Illinois, Wisconsin Badgers football looked lost. A year after former UW head coach Paul Chryst pled his team to “draw a line in the sand” against the Illini, the Badgers appeared locked in an eternal struggle against that same opponent.

That failure to draw a line in the sand in 2022 led to a turning point for UW. Athletic Director Chris McIntosh fired Chryst the following day. Just over a month later, McIntosh hired Luke Fickell to replace him. After a slow start to his first season, has Fickell finally turned the corner that Chryst so desperately needed to?

Despite the ugly start against the Illini, Wisconsin football won on Saturday 25-21. The Badgers scored 15 unanswered points to close the game and secure the victory. Because of the slow start, fans experienced a roller coaster of emotions.

Wisconsin Football Fell Behind Early

After an Illini touchdown with 4:30 remaining in the 3rd quarter, the Wisconsin Badgers trailed 21-7. UW had done nothing to inspire confidence in a potential comeback. Fans were particularly critical of Wisconsin defensive coordinator Mike Tressel.

Will Pauling is a Star Wide Receiver for Wisconsin Football

The Badgers needed two late touchdowns to secure the victory. The first came courtesy of a 20-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Braedyn Locke. The redshirt freshman, in his first start, connected for his first touchdown with fellow UW newcomer Will Pauling. The Cincinnati transfer made a highlight reel catch to get the Wisconsin football team back in the game.

Former Wisconsin Badgers running back Anthony Davis was just as impressed as the rest of us mortals.

Wisconsin Badgers Offensive Lineman Catches Touchdown for the Win

To cap off the comeback, Locke threw his second touchdown of the day to Rucci. No, not tight end Hayden Rucci. Backup left tackle Nolan Rucci caught the 3-yard pass to put the Badgers up 25-21 with 27 seconds remaining. It was a sight to behold.

Wisconsin Badgers Football Gives Fans Something to Be Hopeful About

Thanks to Wisconsin fans’ known best friends, the Minnesota Gophers, the Badgers now control their own destiny in the Big Ten West. A loss by the Iowa Hawkeyes against Minnesota on Saturday put Wisconsin back in the driver’s seat for the division. Wisconsin welcomes the Ohio State Buckeyes to Madison next week in a primetime matchup.


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BadgerNotes' resident college basketball sicko, Kedrick Stumbris covers Wisconsin Badgers men's basketball and women's hockey teams unlike anyone else. He received his B.A. with economics and political science majors from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2018 and has had his work published on Bleacher Report and Verbal Commits.