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December 2009 Archives

Archived Gameday Blog: Men's basketball vs. Ohio State

Please join Brian Mason as he chronicles all the action from today's game between the No. 23-ranked Badgers and No. 15 Ohio State live from courtside at the Kohl Center with the Gameday Blog.

Coming back to Madison

By Meghan Duggan, member of Team USA and senior-to-be at Wisconsin

Everyone wants to know what it felt like when the 21 names were finally released; I will tell you all what I tell them, it's a moment that I will never forget for the rest of my life.

Talking about the Badgers

With its big win over Miami in Tuesday's Champs Sports Bowl, the Wisconsin football team seems to have assumed a place back on the college football radar. A 10-win team expected to return 16 of its 22 starters and both of its kickers will tend to do that.

Archived Gameday Blog: 2009 Champs Sports Bowl

Please join Brian Mason as he chronicles all the action from tonight's Champs Sports Bowl between the No. 24 Badgers and No. 14 Miami live from Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium in Orlando with the Gameday Blog.

'The Voice' with Matt Lepay

It is interesting to me how the result of a bowl game can define a season.  If the Badgers beat Miami tonight, it would give Wisconsin 10 wins and a much-needed victory against a ranked opponent. 

It likely would go a long way in creating some buzz going into next fall. Yes, the team will miss the departing seniors, but there are plenty of weapons returning on offense, and some young playmakers will continue to grow on defense.

Gameday Link-a-Rama

We're just about 4 hours away from tonight's Champs Sports Bowl. The team is leaving from the hotel in about an hour, but before we go, I'll share some links from around the 'net to get you ready for the game.

Badger fans ready for Champs Sports Bowl

The Badgers have spent five days in Orlando preparing for the Champs Sports Bowl, but Monday was all about a final tune-up for the fans.

An impressive contingent of Badgers fans turned out to get set for tomorrow night's game against Miami, joining the UW Marching Band, spirit squads and head coach Bret Bielema for a spirited pep rally at the Pointe Orlando shopping center, site of the Bowl-a-Palooza FanFest.

Monday Link-a-Rama

A collection of links to the latest coverage on the Badgers' Champs Sports Bowl preparations from the far reaches of the World Wide Web.

Badger hoops back in the Top 25

The latest men's basketball polls were released on Monday and the Badgers have rejoined the AP top 25 rankings, checking in at No. 23. Wisconsin (10-2) has won four straight games heading into Big Ten play this Thursday against Ohio State. That begins a stretch where UW will face ranked foes in five of the next six games.

Countdown to kickoff

Tomorrow is game day! In preparation for that, the team has the Champs Sports Bowl Kickoff Luncheon and its normal Friday walkthrough on the schedule.

Practice report #3: Final preparations

Wisconsin went through its third practice on Sunday in preparation for Tuesday night's game against Miami in the Champs Sports Bowl. The practice consisted of 12 periods, or roughly one hour, with most of the work coming against the scout teams.

Day for Kids at DisneyQuest

The Wisconsin football team took a break from football on Sunday morning to give back to the Orlando community. Wisconsin, along with players from Champs Sports Bowl opponent Miami and Capital One Bowl participants Penn State and LSU, partnered with underprivileged local youths for the Florida Citrus Sports Foundation's Day for Kids at DisneyQuest.

Sunday Link-a-Rama

Just watching former UW linebacker Jonathan Casillas make his first NFL start, but thought I'd share a collection of links to the latest coverage on the Badgers' Champs Sports Bowl preparations from the far reaches of the World Wide Web.

Giving back

This morning one of the most important bowl events is planned. Though the players all enjoy going to Universal Studios and definitely prefer the 60- and 70-degree weather to the snow back in Madison, today's Day for Kids event is something they all feel is special.

Practice Report #2: Staying focused

After dealing with rainy conditions on Friday, the Wisconsin football team returned to practice on Saturday and again was greeted by less than ideal weather. It was unseasonably cool with a temperature hovering in the mid-50s as the Badgers worked on a practice field outside of Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium.

Saturday Link-a-Rama

Heading off to practice in a little bit, but first, here's a collection of links to the latest coverage on the Badgers' Champs Sports Bowl preparations from the far reaches of the World Wide Web.

Back to work

The first two days in Orlando for the Badgers included things like trips to Universal Studios, SeaWorld and Disney World, a visit from Santa Claus and a Best Buy shopping spree. Oh yeah, the team also practiced for about two hours yesterday. Well today is all about preparing to face Miami.

Practice report #1: Getting down to business

The Badgers endured a heavy rainstorm but still got through their first practice on Christmas Day on one of the practice fields adjacent to Citrus Bowl Stadium in Orlando, Fla., as they prepare for the Champs Sports Bowl against Miami on Dec. 29.

Friday Link-a-Rama

A collection of links to the latest coverage on the Badgers' Champs Sports Bowl preparations from the far reaches of the World Wide Web.

Working on Christmas

And people think that Walgreen's is the only place open for business on Christmas Day. Both the Badgers and the Hurricanes will take to the practice field in rainy Orlando today in preparation for Tuesday's Champs Sports Bowl. It's supposed to rain on and off today so we'll see if that affects practice at all. But UW will get a little holiday cheer in before putting on the pads.

'I hope the rides are big enough for me'

It was a new twist on an age-old issue. While a number of children were hoping they'd be tall enough to make it past the "You must be this tall to ride" signs, several of the players among the busload of Badgers that made the trip to Universal Studios on Thursday were concerned about the size limits of theme park attractions, too.

Just in a different way.

Thursday Link-a-Rama

A collection of links to the latest coverage on the Badgers' Champs Sports Bowl preparations from the far reaches of the World Wide Web.

A day to get settled

Today is the Badgers' first full day in Orlando after arriving at the team hotel around 8 p.m. Wednesday night. The itinerary is fairly light as the team will not practice today. With a full week in Orlando, head coach Bret Bielema is treating this like a normal game week. In that scenario, Thursday=Monday, which is the players' usual off day.

Champs Sports Bowl Travelog - Arrival

The Badgers' trip to Orlando is underway after buses began pulling out of Camp Randall Stadium around 2 p.m. I'll be back with updates throughout the day of travel, so check back often.

The grass is literally greener

Here is a look at the short-term forecast for both Madison and Orlando, via weather.com. Let's just say I'm glad our plane leaves at 4 p.m. today.


Former Badgers ranked among U.S. best for '09

Six former University of Wisconsin athletes are included in the 2009 edition of Track & Field News' annual ranking of the top U.S. men's athletes.

The four former Badgers who competed for the U.S. in the IAAF World Championships in Athletics over the summer are ranked among the top 10 in their respective events, as are a pair of former UW field-event stars.

"The Voice" with Matt Lepay

Thumbnail image for the_voiceSM.jpgBo Ryan enjoys history. He believes it is a good idea for fans to be aware of Wisconsin basketball history. When the Badgers recently knocked off Marquette, giving the current head coach 200 wins as the UW boss, Ryan quickly mentioned the two men he joins in the UW's "200 Club," Walter Meanwell and Bud Foster.

Making the most of your time

For a number of years now the cry has been the same: The Big Ten has too much of a layoff between its final regular-season games and its bowl games. Well, after facing Hawaii on Dec. 5, Wisconsin doesn't fit into that scenario this year.

While 23 days may seem like a long time between football games, especially when you consider the usual time is six days between games, bowl games are unusual in a number of ways. It's also 11 days fewer than UW had before last year's Champs Sports Bowl.

Time to start locking in

With the Champs Sports Bowl less than two weeks away, the Badgers have started shifting their focus from snow and finals to warmth and Miami. One of the first steps in that process was Sunday's practice.

The Badgers practiced for 18 periods, using the first portions of practice to work on Miami with the one and twos on offense and defense both getting some work in against the scout teams. However, one of the benefits of bowl practice is getting an extended look at some of the young players who didn't get much time during the regular season.

On the road again

Saturday marked the official start to the bowl season with the New Mexico Bowl and the St. Petersburg Bowl. It also was an unofficial start to Wisconsin's preparations for the Champs Sports Bowl on Dec. 29.

Though the Badgers practiced four times last week, including some early prep work on Miami, the bowl game and the trip to Orlando is becoming more of a reality and that point was driven home on Saturday. That's when UW's equipment truck, full of the team's equipment and luggage for players, coaches and staff members, started the 21-hour drive from Madison to Orlando.

Hughes' elite company

With a long two from the wing early in the first half Wednesday night vs. Cal Poly, Trevon Hughes etched his name among the greats in Wisconsin basketball history. Hughes's jumper gave him 1,000 points for his UW career, making him the 34th member of the Badgers' 1,000-point club.

A season in pictures

Take a look back at the 2009 Wisconsin men's soccer season in three photo galleries recently posted to UWBadgers.com. The photos, from UW's games against Western Illinois, Indiana and Michigan State, are courtesy of photographer Anna Stonehouse.

"The Voice" with Matt Lepay

Thumbnail image for the_voiceSM.jpgHaving covered athletics for 25 years, it can be easy to be a little jaded. If you allow it to happen, the big money and big scandals can take a lot of the enjoyment out of sports. However, there are moments when I am reminded of why the world of fun and games can be just that. Last Friday night's Wisconsin Football Awards Show provided us with one of those moments.

Archived Gameday Blog: Men's basketball vs. Marquette

Join Brian Mason as he chronicles all the action from today's game between the Badgers (6-2) and Marquette (7-2) with the Gameday Blog.

Yeagley to coach at MLS Combine

Men's soccer head coach Todd Yeagley has picked up some extra work for the offseason.

Yeagley was announced Thursday as a coach for the upcoming 2010 adidas MLS Player Combine, which is set for Jan. 8-12 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He will lead Team F50i along with Larry Sunderland, Director of Player Personnel for the MLS' Chicago Fire.

Archived Gameday Blog: Men's basketball vs. Green Bay

Join Patrick Herb and Brian Mason courtside as they chronicle all the action from tonight's game between the Badgers (6-1) and Green Bay (8-2) with the Gameday Blog.

Driving through the snow globe

While the "snowstorm of the decade" might be crippling the Madison area, the Wisconsin men's basketball team stayed a few steps ahead of the posse Tuesday. Just as the forecasted blizzard was beginning to blanket the state capital, Bo Ryan and the boys boarded a Badger Bus bound for Green Bay.

The schools, churches and taverns might be closed on Wednesday (OK, scratch that, the taverns never close), but rest assured the Badgers' game vs. the Green Bay Phoenix should be played as scheduled. After a slightly-longer-than-normal trip, the UW men's hoops team pulled into its hotel in the Green Bay area in time for a 6:30 p.m. practice at the Resch Center Tuesday night. Check out video highlights from practice.

"The Voice" with Matt Lepay

Thumbnail image for the_voiceSM.jpgWhen I started covering Wisconsin athletics in 1988, my first road trip was to Miami. Don Morton's Badgers vs. Jimmy Johnson's University of Miami Hurricanes at the Orange Bowl. One of the trip's highlights was a press box fire that broke out the night before the game.The next day we could still smell the smoke in our radio booth. Back then there were four originating radio outlets calling UW football. I normally worked with Larry Mialik, but he had a commitment that weekend, so I had the chance to work with former coach John Jardine. That too was a highlight.

Archived Gameday Blog: Football vs. Hawaii

Please join Brian Mason as he chronicles all the action from the Wisconsin football team's regular-season finale against Hawaii from Aloha Stadium. Remember, the blog is interactive, so be sure to chime in with comments and questions and vote in the polls, or email me at bm3@athletics.wisc.edu.

Still buzzing about win over Duke

National and local media are still buzzing about Wisconsin's upset of No. 6 Duke at the Kohl Center Wednesday night. On the strength of a career-high 26 points from Trevon Hughes, Bo Ryan's Badgers knocked off their first top-10 opponent since winning at Texas in the 2007-08 season.

Here is a sampling of some of the praise being heaped on Hughes, Ryan and the Badgers.

Savory Snacks and other tidbits from the trip to Hawaii

Wednesday was a full day to say the least for the Badger football team. It started in the darkness at Camp Randall Stadium and ended under the lights at Aloha Stadium. Check out all the details with Director of Athletic Communications Brian Lucas' running blog.

Check out the photo gallery here.

6:55 a.m. - Arrive at Camp Randall Stadium.

6:58 a.m. - Go to office to retrieve sunglasses. A definite for Hawaii.

7:02 a.m. - Breakfast in the Student-Athlete Dining Hall. My meal consisted of a blueberry muffin, French toast, bacon and some potatoes. I passed on the made-to-order omelet. Something tells me this won't be the last time we eat on this trip.

Rhode Island

By Olivia Jakiel, Wisconsin women's hockey

This past weekend marked the second road trip where our team chartered a plane to our destination; this time it was Providence, Rhode Island. An early departure of 5 a.m. from Camp Randall would make for a very grumpy bus ride to the airport (so you would think); however, the team was chatty and extremely bubbly (I would like to thank my four cups of coffee for that). Once we arrived we headed straight for the rink to practice, where Stef (McKeough) won the showdown again and picked Jasmine (Giles) to sing.

Wisconsin's history in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge

Wisconsin has played in each of the previous 10 Big Ten/ACC Challenges, owning a 4-6 record in such games. UW is 3-1 in the state of Wisconsin during the Challenge and 2-1 at the Kohl Center. The Badgers' .400 winning percentage in Challenge contests is tied for second among Big Ten schools.

Here is a look at each of Wisconsin's 10 games in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge...

"The Voice" with Matt Lepay

This figures to be an interesting few days in the world of Badger football and men'sThumbnail image for the_voiceSM.jpg basketball. Before the broadcast crew begins its "Adventures in Hawaii Part 2," a quick word about Wednesday night's much anticipated hoops tussle with Duke.

I would hope the Kohl Center has some energy for this one. I've heard some fans grumble that there are times when the Badgers' home arena seems more like a library than a sports facility.