Wisconsin Football: A “Way Too Early” look at the 2023 season

PHOENIX, ARIZONA - DECEMBER 27: (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, ARIZONA - DECEMBER 27: (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images) /
2 of 5

The Badgers’ first conference foe is the Purdue Boilermakers. Wisconsin has OWNED this series, sporting a mark of 52-29-8. You have to go back to 1997, when certain future HOF’er Drew Brees was QB, to find the last time Purdue beat Wisconsin in Ross-Ade Stadium.

Hopefully, Purdue is still undefeated going into this game, but I kind of doubt it. Wisconsin should be about 10 point favorite.

My biggest complaint with the schedule is the positioning of the off week. I hate getting a bye in the first half of the season. It potentially kills momentum and helps the team much more later in the year, after the grind of the season starts to wear bodies down. Unfortunately, the Badgers’ bye-week is week 5.

Wisconsin has its first home conference game against the Scarlet Knights of Rutgers. These teams have only met four times, with the Badgers easily winning every contest. Rutgers has only scored 30 total points in the 4 games, which still wouldn’t be enough to beat Wisconsin’s total from last year alone.

Greg Schiano has Rutgers trending in the right direction, and this could be a potential look-ahead spot for Wisconsin. Wisconsin is favored by 17 points but suffers its first non-cover win of the year.

The game that started this whole list. Iowa comes to town on 10/14. Kirk Ferentz’s hot seat will get even hotter after Wisconsin avenges another loss from last season. The last time that the Badgers lost at home to the Hawkeyes was in 2015, in an epic 10-6 affair.

In the last 20 meetings between these two schools, the margin of victory has been 10 or more points 11 times. Make that 12 as Wisconsin puts the college football world on notice that this is a team to be reckoned with. Wisconsin is a 5-point favorite that easily covers. They move to 6-0 and are knocking on the Top 10.

Wisconsin takes to the road for their next opponent, the Fighting Illini of Illinois. One thing I can promise you is that Braelon Allen will not rush for 2 yards again. Payback is the order of the day as Wisconsin avenges yet another defeat from the previous season.

This spread should have Wisconsin favored by 10. The last 3 Wisconsin victories have been by 24 or more points. If Luke Fickell can keep his team from peeking ahead to the following week, they could make it four. Wisconsin rolls and sets up their biggest game since the 2017 Big Ten Championship.