Doc's Sports 2011 Wisconsin Badgers Football Betting Preview
by Doc - 8/16/2011
Predicted Overall Record 9-4 (5-3 in the Big Ten)
Click the link for the 2011 Wisconsin Badgers football schedule and results.
The Badgers will enter this season as the defending Big Ten Champions, and on paper they look to be in great shape to defend their title. Through spring practice and most of the summer the big question surrounding this team was who would be the quarterback? Two-year starter Scott Tolzein now plays for the San Diego Chargers and he had an effective and underappreciated career at Wisconsin. The Badger quarterbacks who played in the Spring Game did not look very promising, and this was going to be a major concern until the arrival of Russell Wilson from NC State in July. He had an outstanding career for the Wolfpack, but was released because of his persistence of playing minor league baseball in the summer for the Colorado Rockies. Under the guidance of offensive coordinator Paul Chryst (one of the top play callers in the country), Wilson should be able to grasp the offense quickly and be an effective player with his arm and his legs.
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Strengths: Since Barry Alvarez took over in the late 1980s, Wisconsin has always been known for producing big and talented offensive lines. It should be business as usual this season with three starters returning and an average weight of 326 pounds. The offense is also loaded at the running back position with Montee Ball and James White returning.
The defense did lose their best playmaker in JJ Watt to the Houston Texans. However, they have seven of their top eight playmakers back. I expect this unit to be stronger in 2011 than they were in 2010.
Weakness: The receiving corps was hit hard with the loss of Anderson, Gilreath, and Kendricks. Nick Toon does return, but he always seems to be battling an injury. Over the years Wisconsin receivers have always seemed to be more hype than bite, and their youngsters will need to step up this season in order for Wisconsin to have a great year.
The schedule is also a weakness for the Badgers as they have some tough road games against Ohio State, Michigan State, and Illinois. Winning two of these three games will be an impressive feat, in this writer’s opinion.
Favorable Win against the Spread: Oct. 1 vs. Nebraska. This game will mark the first Big Ten conference game ever for Nebraska. The Badgers will be coming off an easy nonconference schedule and will go all out since they have a bye the following week. This will be a night game and the home crowd will be emotional and liquored up! I believe that this will be too much to overcome for the visitor and I will be laying the wood with the Badgers, as they will likely be just a small favorite.
Favorable Loss against the Spread: Oct. 22 at Michigan State. This game will be toward the end of October and this will be Wisconsin’s first true road game of the 2011 season. If Wisconsin is undefeated they will likely be a small favorite, as Michigan State has a tough early schedule and could suffer a couple of losses. Michigan State will be hosting Michigan the week before, but the Spartans always seem to play well the week after they face their rival. The Spartans did not lose a home game in 2010, and it would not surprise me if they repeat that feat in 2011.
Closing Thoughts: Optimism is at an all-time time right now in Wisconsin as people around this neck of the woods fell that this team should win the Big Ten and possibly challenge for a spot in the BCS. I am not as optimistic as these people and feel that Wisconsin will struggle to win 10 games this season. The Badgers like to sneak up on people when nobody really expects much from them. That will not be the case this season, and over the years Wisconsin has struggled when expectations are high.
Doc’s Sports is set to embark on their 40th year in the sports handicapping business this football season. Yes, Doc started the company back in 1971 and still spends his weekends in front of the TV watching numerous games throughout the day. We are again expecting a monster season in college football anchored by our weekly selections from the Big Ten Conference. Our main office is located right in the heart of Big Ten Country and each year we fully expect to hit 2 out of every 3 college football picks we release from this conference. Jump on board now with a full season football picks package from Doc’s Sports!
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