Wisconsin Badgers: 5 Most Impactful Seniors

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Jan 1, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Tyler Marz (61) blocks as Auburn Tigers defensive lineman Gimel President (42) rushes during the first half in the 2015 Outback Bowl at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tyler Marz

Tyler Marz has proven to be the most reliable offensive lineman on the Badgers’ roster. He has started every game in the past three seasons protecting quarterbacks’ blindsides as Wisconsin’s left tackle, a span of 37 consecutive games.

As the most veteran player on the Badgers’ inexperienced offensive line in 2015, Marz has been able to remain healthy while linemen around him moved around to different positions on the offensive line because of injuries.

Marz redshirted as a freshman in 2011, but his work in practice earned him the Badgers’ Offensive Scout Team Player of the Year. In his redshirt freshman season, Marz appeared in 11 games including the Big Ten Championship Game and the Rose Bowl.

As a sophomore in 2013, Marz started all 13 games and helped Wisconsin’s offense set school records in total offense, rushing yards and rushing average.

Marz earned the start in all 14 games as a junior last season, and the offensive line paved the way for Melvin Gordon’s Heisman Trophy chase, which came up short. The Badgers set another school record in rushing yards per game with 320.1. Protecting the quarterback’s blindside in every game, Marz guided Wisconsin to allowing just 13 sacks for an average of 0.93 sacks per game, which ranked No. 6 in the country.

Wisconsin had the same five starters on the offensive line in all 14 games in 2014, which is a completely different story from this year’s unit. Marz and center Dan Voltz were the only returners, and injuries and inexperience has been a major issue. The Badgers started five different offensive line combinations in the first seven games of the season. Left tackle has been the only consistent position for the Badgers in 2015, and Marz, the lone senior on the offensive line, will be missed.

Next: Most Impactful Seniors: Michael Caputo