No. 12 Wisconsin: 'They’re Always Going to Run the Football'

They’re really, really good up front on both sides of the ball. There’s going to be a change on defense, with new coordinator Jim Leonhard taking over after a year as the defensive backs coach. He played at Wisconsin and has been through the NFL, so there will be a couple tweaks to the defense, but I don’t think there’s going to be a lot of change. They’ve done a good job defensively, and they have a lot of guys back. Up front there are four that have started and played a lot. Inside linebackers [6' 2", 233-pound senior] Jack Cichy and [6' 1", 246-pound junior] T.J. Edwards are good players. And inside linebacker Chris Orr [a 6-foot, 226-pound junior] was hurt a year ago. I think they’ll be good at outside linebacker, but not as good without Vince Biegel and T.J. Watt [both drafted].

On O, they’re always going to run the football. In the passing game they’re going to try to get some big plays down the field. They’ve got a new quarterback in [6' 4", 213-pound sophomore] Alex Hornibrook, and he’s been in the mold of some of their previous guys—he’s a game manager who can run and throw some. Watching them toward the end of last year, they had some guys outside that could make some big plays.

And most of the time, the well-coached, fundamental teams are good at special teams. Wisconsin fits that mold.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.