It has been 10 years since Ron Dayne brought home the Heisman Trophy to the University of Wisconsin. Who could forget his historic run against Iowa in 1999 to break the NCAA rushing record Or his performance in the 2000 Rose Bowl with 34 carries for 200 yards and a touchdown. To commemorate Daynes monumental 1999 season, UWBadgers.com will provide weekly updates with memories from the 1999 season. Today, we look back at the first Big Ten Conference game of the 1999 season, UWs matchup against Michigan.
Make sure you check out our portal page commemorating Daynes 1999 season. It includes links to Dayne in the record books, clips from 1999 and memorable videos.
After coming off a disappointing 17-12 road loss at Cincinnati, the Badgers were looking to get the 1999 Big Ten schedule out to a strong start. First up, Michigan.
The Wolverines didnt make things easy, jumping out to a 14-0 lead by the end of the first quarter. Wisconsin responded in the second though, scoring nine points off a Vitaly Pisetsky 32-yard field goal and a 34-yard touchdown run by Ron Dayne. The Badger tailback had a solid first half with 88 yards to help Wisconsin keep the score close at 14-9 heading into halftime.
Then in the second half, Michigan did what other defenses were unable to do all season, shut down Ron Dayne. He carried the ball eight times for a total of zero yards in the second half.
With Dayne shut down, Michigan extended its lead thanks to the arm of Tom Brady. The Wolverine quarterback connected with DiAllo Johnson for a 23-yard touchdown to give Michigan the 21-7 advantage with 1:02 remaining in the third.
Wisconsin would score once more in the fourth, off a Brooks Bollinger 13-yard touchdown run, but it wasnt enough as the Badgers dropped their second-straight game, 21-16 to the Wolverines, and opened the conference season 0-1.
The back-to-back losses didnt deter Wisconsin from its goal of another Rose Bowl. Head coach Barry Alvarez did his part by continuing to encourage his players following the loss.
"We've got a lot of good kids, he said after the game. I told them there's a lot of season left, and we can accomplish an awful lot. I just feel confident they'll bounce back."
Daynes 88 yards against Michigan broke his four-game streak of rushing for 100 or more yards that dated back to the 1998 season. Some thought Daynes game against the Wolverines have a negative effect on his Heisman Trophy chances.
"I'm not blowing smoke and I don't think Ron is blowing smoke, Alvarez said after the game. I'd love to see Ron win awards but it's about winning games. ... There is nothing I'd like to see more than Ron have 200 yards rushing, but sometimes it doesn't happen. The most important thing is winning."
Thankfully for Dayne, Alvarez and the Badgers, that is all the team would do the rest of the 1999 season.
id=10443"> --> Wisconsin vs. Michigan Boxscore
- sportid=111&storyid=18946"> --> Remembering the Heisman: Week 1 (Murray State game)
- sportid=111&storyid=19015"> --> Remembering the Heisman: Week 2 (Ball State game)
- sportid=111&storyid=19097"> --> Remembering the Heisman: Week 3 (Cincinnati game)