Wisconsin backup quarterback Joel Stave said he is feeling much better after overcoming a mental block, better known as the yips.
According to the Mayo Clinic, yips are involuntary wrist spasms and can be associated with performance anxiety.
Before the season opener against LSU, Stave’s passes in warmups were sailing all over the field. Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen tried to explain Stave’s demotion by initially saying that he was shutting him down because of a shoulder problem.
“You watched LSU (warm-ups) and that was kind of a (expletive) show,” Stave said, according to Zach Heilprin of ESPN Wisconsin. “From then to now, it’s night and day. I just knew at some point I’d come out of it, I’d get back to normal and start feeling comfortable again. That’s basically what happened.”
Tanner McEvoy has started each of Wisconsin’s four games, and even though the Badgers are 3-1, they are far from a complete offense.
The Badgers rank 113th out of 125 FBS teams in passing offense and third in rushing offense. McAvoy is completing 59 percent of his passes for 605 yards with five touchdowns and four interceptions.
Stave has 19 career starts, going 13-6 in those contests. Last season, he threw for 2,494 yards with 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. He has been splitting second-team reps with Bart Houston and says he is ready to play should he be called upon.
"If things start to go bad or Tanner gets hurt, through this whole thing I've prepared mentally like I always would," Stave said. "I've watched film, taken notes and done what I need to do to feel like I have a good enough feel for the defense. So just continue to do that. If my number is called, then I'll be ready to go."
- Scooby Axson