Loudermilk’s presence against Iowa was likely the difference for the defense. Having a second player who was able to make an impact along the defensive line is massive. The pocket is suddenly collapsing more frequently, more passes are getting batted down, fewer runs are being bounced outside, and there’s more consistent play all around. Loudermilk is why.
The strength of Nebraska’s offense is probably its two monster wide receivers, Stanley Morgan Jr. and JD Spielman. Loudermilk won’t have anything to do with them, but he will have something to do with the guy who will try to deliver the ball to them.
Wisconsin fans will likely remember former Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez. Current quarterback Adrian Martinez, who is of no relation to Taylor, plays a very similar style. He’ll pick up yards with his feet and sling the ball all over the field. He’ll make mistakes but he’ll also create fireworks.
Loudermilk will be tasked with keeping Martinez in check on the ground. A consistent pass rush goes a long way in affecting a young quarterback like Martinez, who is a true freshman, but keeping contain might be more important this weekend.
Loudermilk is on the brink of breaking out. With another strong performance against Nebraska, I’d be comfortable stating the defensive line is a strength, yet again, for the Badgers.