Wisconsin Football: Badgers’ 5 Most Devastating Losses In The Last 5 Years

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Dec 6, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Wisconsin Badgers running back Melvin Gordon (25) is tackled by Ohio State Buckeyes cornerback Doran Grant (12) during the Big Ten football championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Opponent: Ohio State Buckeyes

Date: December 6, 2014

Final Score: 59-0

This may not fit the category of a devastating loss in the same sense of the other games on this list, but the 2014 Big Ten Championship Game was an embarrassing performance from the Badgers, who were destroyed 59-0 by the Buckeyes.

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Wisconsin came in riding an eight-game winning streak, and believe it or not, Wisconsin was actually favored to win this game with little-known, third-string Ohio State quarterback Cardale Jones set to make his first collegiate start.

The game was as disastrous as any game in the history of Wisconsin football. The Badgers won the opening coin toss, but it was all downhill from there. Ohio State took the opening drive 77 yards on six plays, which resulted in a touchdown, followed by a three-and-out from the Badgers’ offense.

Jones carved up Wisconsin’s defense, and the Badgers found themselves trailing 38-0 by halftime. Ohio State went in cruise control in the second half for the 59-point win, and the statistics were quite one-sided as one might expect.

Joel Stave completed 17 of 43 passes for 187 yards and three interceptions and was sacked three times. Melvin Gordon carried the ball 26 times for 76 yards, an average of 2.9 yards per carry, and a fumble that was returned for a touchdown. The Badgers’ best player in the game might have been punter Drew Meyer, who kicked the ball eight times for a 41.1-yard average with a long of 57 yards.

On the other side, Jones completed 12 of his 17 passes for 257 yards and threw three touchdowns to Devin Smith, who led the Buckeyes with 137 yards receiving. Ezekiel Elliott received 20 carries for 220 yards and scored two touchdowns.

Head coach Gary Andersen bolted for Oregon State four days later, and Barry Alvarez returned to the sidelines as the Badgers defeated Auburn 34-31 in the Outback Bowl. The Big Ten title game loss vaulted Ohio State into the College Football Playoff, and Jones led the Buckeyes to a national title.

Next: Devastating Losses: LSU