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Football team honored by Baldwin via House Resolution

The Wisconsin football team has been getting a lot of recognition for its 2010 season, but Friday took things to another level as Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin, representing Wisconsin's second district, introduced H.Res. 1767, a House resolution commending the Wisconsin Badger football team for an outstanding season and for their 2011 Rose Bowl bid. The resolution garnered bipartisan support.

Baldwin praised not just team members' success on the field, but their academic successes, as well. She also singled out the leadership of UW-Madison Chancellor Biddy Martin, Athletic Director Barry Alvarez, Coach Bret Bielema, and Offensive Coordinator Paul Chryst.

Follow the link to read and see video Baldwin's full statement.

"Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise today in strong support of H. Res. 1767, a resolution commending the Wisconsin Badger football team for an outstanding season and for their 2011 Rose Bowl bid.

The Wisconsin Badgers completed a dominant regular season and won the Big Ten Title! They finished their season 11 and 1! They are the least penalized team in the country! The Badger offense ranks in the top 20 nationally in scoring, rushing, and total offense! 22 Badger players were selected to the Academic All-Big Ten Team! Even more exciting, our Wisconsin Badgers earned a well-deserved bid to the Rose Bowl on January 1, 2011!

It has been such a pleasure for me to watch our Badger football team excel this season. I know I am joined by fans at home in Wisconsin--and indeed alumni around the country--in feeling great pride in the University of Wisconsin-Madison and this stellar accomplishment. It is true that our football team enjoys very loyal and fervent support--Badger fans sold out Camp Randall Stadium for the entire season!

And what a season it was. My colleagues may remember a warm night in October when the Badgers defeated the number one ranked Ohio State Buckeyes 31 to 18. It was an incredible game! I will never forget the opening kickoff return by David Gilreath for a touchdown! After the game, fans rushed the field in a sea of red -- what a game!

The following week, the Badgers barnstormed into Iowa and beat a strong Hawkeyes team in an inspiring comeback. The Badger defense cemented the 1-point win with a key defensive stand.

The Badgers' success on the field is guided by strong guidance from University of Wisconsin leaders. I'd like to acknowledge a few key folks who have contributed to this outstanding season.

University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Biddy Martin has exhibited incredibly strong leadership for the University of Wisconsin. Chancellor Martin displays an unyielding commitment to academic excellence for Wisconsin's student athletes and is assuredly a big reason behind this great season.

I also want to acknowledge Athletic Director Barry Alvarez, a three-time Rose Bowl winning coach, who had a strong hand in helping lead the Badgers back to Pasadena, California.

And, of course, we are grateful to the strong leadership of Head Coach Bret Bielema, who showed tremendous resolve in guiding the Badgers to an outstanding 11 and 1 season. Indeed, the Badgers have achieved a stellar 49 and 15 record overall during Coach Bielema's tenure. And, in addition to his prowess on the field, Coach Bielema is a leader in his community -- he does tremendous work to promote breast cancer awareness and survival.

In addition, our Badger Offensive Coordinator Paul Chryst is a finalist for the Broyles Award as the nation's top assistant coach.

Football fans watch the game because of the skill and talent of the players. At Wisconsin, we're lucky enough to have the privilege of watching players on the field who also show exceptional leadership off the field

Senior quarterback Scott Tolzien, the most accurate passer in college football, won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award for his on-field performance, as well as his character.

Senior defensive end J.J. Watt is an Academic All-Big Ten Team selection, and winner of the Lott IMPACT Trophy, awarded nationally to a defensive player for his athletic, academic, and community achievements.

And senior offensive lineman Gabe Carimi won the Outland Trophy, an honor given to the best interior lineman in college football, in addition to being selected to the Academic All-Big Ten Team as a civil engineering major.

As my colleagues know, the annual Rose Bowl game is the oldest of all college bowl games, and its history and prestige have earned it the title `The Granddaddy of Them All.' This 2011 Rose Bowl bid is exciting for the Wisconsin Badgers, as well as Texas Christian University, who we will meet in Pasadena. Wisconsin looks forward to badgering the Horned Frogs on New Year's Day!

I urge my colleagues to support H. Res. 1767, which recognizes the achievements of the players, coaches, students, alumni, and staff who were instrumental in helping the Wisconsin Badgers make it to Pasadena, California. Regardless of your political affiliation or football allegiance, there's always an open invitation from the Wisconsin Badgers to 'teach you how to Bucky.'

We'll see you in Pasadena! On Wisconsin!"