December 28, 2008

Series by series: UW's defense against FSU

For the first 29 minutes of the first half, the Wisconsin defense did an above average job against Florida State's offense in the Champs Sports Bowl. However, after the Seminole's scored with under ten seconds left in the first half, the wheels fell of for Wisconsin as it was routed 42-13.

Today, BadgerBlitz.com takes a look back at every defensive series from Saturday's game. The following is a defensive series by series recap of the game:

First quarter:

Defensive series No. 1: Started on Florida State 24 yard line following kickoff.
Plays: 8
Yards given up: 27
Result: 46-yard Graham Gano punt.

Key play: Unfortunately for UW, the key play was nothing its defense did. In what was a sign of things to come, Gano punted the ball on a rope and pinned the Badgers on their own three yard line.

Defensive series No. 2: Started on Florida State 11 yard line following Brad Nortman punt.
Plays: 7
Yards given up: 44
Result: 44-yard Gano punt.

Key play: Once was not enough, so Gano perfectly pinned the Badgers on their own one yard line this time.

Defensive series No. 3: Started on Wisconsin 49 yard line following Nortman punt.
Plays: 3
Yards given up 3
Result: 45-yard Gano punt.

Key play: For the third straight time, Gano pinned the Badgers at their own one yard line with another perfectly placed punt.

Second quarter:

Defensive series No. 4: Started on Florida State 20 yard line following Nortman punt. (Note: FSU scored a touchdown when Sherer's pass to the flat was batted down. 7-0 Florida State)
Plays: 6
Yards given up: 4
Result: 48-yard Gano punt.

Key play: With the Seminoles facing a third and 12 scenario, DeAndre Levy came free on a delayed blitz, surprised Christian Ponder and took him down for the sack.

Defensive series No. 5: Started on Florida State 31 yard line following kickoff. (7-3 Florida State)
Plays: 6
Yards: 7
Result: 58-yard Gano punt.

Key play: Florida State rushed for only five yards on third and eight leaving them short of the first down. However, UW head coach Bret Bielema decided to back them up when an illegal formation penalty was called. Luckily for UW, on the subsequent third and 13, Ponder's pass went awry and FSU was forced to punt.

Defensive series No. 6: Started on Wisconsin 47 yard line following Nortman punt.
Plays: 4
Yards given up: 47
Result: Touchdown (14-3 Florida State)

Key play: With just 40 seconds left in the half, FSU calmly moved down the field and scored on a beautiful one-handed Greg Carr touchdown grab. That score demoralized the Badgers who were unable to bounce back defensively.

Third quarter:

Defensive series No. 7: Started on Florida State 15 yard line following kickoff. (14-6 Florida State)
Plays: 16
Yards given up: 85
Result: Touchdown (21-6 Florida State)

Key play: On third and two early in the drive, UW had a great chance to get off the field and get its offense back on the field down only one score. Instead, the Badgers jumped offside to give the Seminoles a first down that revitalized the drive.

Defensive series No. 8: Started on Florida State 23 yard line following fumble recovery.
Plays: 7
Yards given up: 77
Result: Touchdown (28-6 Florida State)

Key play: Down only 21-6, the Badgers had forced FSU into a punting situation. On the play, Gano looked to be hit by UW's Louis Nzegwu who was flagged for roughing the kicker. However, as replay showed, Nzegwu never touched Gano and the second chance allowed Florida State to rally and score a touchdown.

Fourth quarter:

Defensive series No. 9: Started on Wisconsin 41 yard line following Nortman punt. (Note: FSU had scored on another fumble recovery for a touchdown making the score 35-6 in their favor)
Plays: 4
Yards given up: 41
Result: Touchdown (42-6 Florida State)

Key play: By this point in the game, the Badgers knew things were out of hand. And when Ponder found his receiver on third and one, everyone could see UW lost its intensity as he walked into the end zone.

Defensive series No. 10: Started on Florida State 28 yard line following Nortman punt.
Plays: 7
Yards given up: 43
Result: Turnover on downs

Key play: Allen Langford completely blew up FSU's screen pass on fourth and one giving the ball back to UW.

Defensive series No. 11: Started on Florida State 25 yard line following kickoff. (42-13 Florida State)
Plays: 7
Yards given up: 47
Result: End of game

Key play: Florida State running back Antone Smith rushed up the middle for one yard as time expired. For UW, it could not have come soon enough.

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