UW Health Sports Medicine 

History with the Hoosiers

When the final weekend of conference play shook out last Saturday and the matchups were finalized for this week's Big Ten Conference Tournament, it was rather fitting that the fifth-seeded Badgers drew No. 4 seed Indiana for Thursday's quarterfinals.

Thursday's match in Bloomington will mark the 39th renewal of Wisconsin's series with Indiana, the Badgers' most-played rivalry. Add in the Indiana ties of UW head coach Todd Yeagley and assistants Ernie Yarborough and Chris Munroe, and there are plenty of storylines in the Badgers' matchup with Hoosiers.

In terms of overall record, it may be a stretch to describe the series between the teams as a "rivalry" -- the Badgers are just 3-31-4 against Indiana all-time -- but most of the games between the programs have carried at least some significance.

All-time, the Badgers are 0-5 against Indiana in the Big Ten tournament, including a 2-0 loss in 2005 in the teams' only previous meeting in the tournament's first round.

Still, any time the Badgers have put together a great season, the road has run through the Hoosiers.

It wasn't until 1991 that the Badgers finally defeated Indiana, scoring a 1-0 win in Madison in the inaugural Big Ten Conference match between the clubs.

Wisconsin went on to win the regular-season conference title that season, but the Hoosiers scored a pair of 2-0 wins to knock the Badgers out of the first Big Ten tournament and, two weeks later, the NCAA tournament.

Current UW head coach Todd Yeagley was a freshman on that Indiana team, playing for his father and legendary IU head coach Jerry Yeagley. Thursday, Todd will return to the field that bears his father's name for his first game in Bloomington as a head coach.

The teams met again in the 1993 NCAA Tournament, but this time, the Badgers turned the tables on Todd Yeagley and the Hoosiers.

Riding the momentum of a 3-1 regional semifinal win over Notre Dame in the first NCAA tournament contest staged at the McClimon Complex, the Badgers headed to Bloomington and knocked off the Hoosiers, 1-0, to snap IU's run of five-consecutive berths in the NCAA quarterfinals.

The Badgers then fell a week later to Virginia, 3-0, in their first-ever quarterfinal match.

The Hoosiers got their revenge a year later in the 1994 Big Ten Tournament, pulling out a 1-0 win over UW, but the Badgers returned the favor in 1995 with one of the biggest home wins in school history.

That day, Oct. 13, the Badgers scored a 2-0 win over Indiana in front of 2,470 fans, the largest crowd to ever see a mens game at the McClimon Complex. Wisconsin, of course, went on to win its first national title that year.

So, wIth the Badgers in need of at least one win this weekend to keep their NCAA tournament hopes alive, the road again goes through Indiana.

With former Hoosiers Yeagley, Yarborough and Munroe pacing the sideline on the Badgers' side, however, the rivalry is certain to have a different look.

"The storylines and the subplots, although they're interesting, once the game begins, I know where my focus will be," Todd said Monday. "Making sure that we put our best foot forward."

Practicing Penalties
The Badgers spent an extended period of time at the end of Tuesday's practice working on penalty kicks -- a skill that can become magnified in the postseason.

Last year, the Badgers were bounced in the first round of the Big Ten tourney on penalties after battling Michigan to a scoreless draw. Wisconsin converted three of its five attempts, but the Wolverines were one better and advanced to the semifinals, 4-3.

Nearly all of UW's field players took chances from the penalty spot over the final 20 minutes of training Tuesday, but the Badgers' coaching staff was mum on who would comprise their group of five that would take PKs if the situation calls for it this weekend.

On the Road
The Badgers pullled out of Madison today to head for Bloomington, with their Meister Coaches bus departing at noon from Camp Randall.

The schedule calls for an Italian dininer en route before a quiet night of preparation at the hotel.

From there, it's an early wake-up call for pre-game breakfast Thursday morning and their date with the Hoosiers at 11:30 a.m. Badgers fans can follow the action live with the Gameday Blog.