Wisconsin Football: Preseason team awards

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - NOVEMBER 25: Jonathan Taylor
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - NOVEMBER 25: Jonathan Taylor /
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Wisconsin Football QB Alex Hornibrook
MIAMI GARDENS, FL – DECEMBER 30: Alex Hornibrook #12 of the Wisconsin Badgers warms up during the 2017 Capital One Orange Bowl against the Miami Hurricanes at Hard Rock Stadium on December 30, 2017 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

Most Improved

Quarterback – Alex Hornibrook

Hornibrook is the Badger most expected to take a significant leap forward. And if he does, his improvement will be most noticeable. As the quarterback of a team, even a run-dominant team, his impact can be felt on every drive. Wisconsin has often struggled to pass the ball consistently over the years. With Hornibrook taking a visible leap forward, that won’t be true of Wisconsin any longer.

A viable passing attack can put Wisconsin’s offense into a new, elite group. The last time Wisconsin had a quarterback opposing defenses feared was Russell Wilson in 2011. That Badger offense was one of the best in college football history and featured stars on every level. It’s hard to imagine Wisconsin doesn’t have that talent this year. They just need the quarterback play to facilitate it.

This will be the easiest award to hand out at the end of the year if Hornibrook holds up his end of the deal. Wisconsin fans will be ecstatic to have more reliable quarterback play once again. Even though Hornibrook has won games at a historic rate in Madison, his performance doing so has been shaky. A strong year from Hornibrook can truly unlock Wisconsin’s potential.

No pressure, Alex.

Other candidates: Chris James, Kendric Pryor, Christian Bell