Wisconsin continued its remarkable run of success in bowl games here Saturday night, stunning 14th-ranked Colorado with a come-from-behind 31-28 overtime victory in the Alamo Bowl presented by MasterCard at the Alamodome.
The Badgers are now 7-1 in eight bowl appearances during the Barry Alvarez era. Five of those seven bowl wins have come against opponents who were nationally ranked at the time of the game.
Sophomore Mike Allen booted a 37-yard field goal on Wisconsins first possession of overtime to give the UW the victory. Colorados Pat Brougham had missed a 45-yard field goal attempt on the Buffaloes first OT possession.
The Badgers got to overtime thanks (again) to the leadership and playmaking of senior quarterback Brooks Bollinger, who became just the seventh QB in Big Ten history to win 30 games during his career. Bollinger drove the Badgers 80 yards in 10 plays and capped the march with a 1-yard touchdown run with 51 seconds left in regulation. Allens point-after tied the game at 28-28 and set up the extra session. During the final regulation drive, Bollinger and the Badgers converted twice on fourth down. The first was a 27-yard completion to Brandon Williams on fourth-and-18 from the UW 44-yard line. The other was a 28-yard strike to Darrin Charles on fourth-and-10 from the CU 29-yard line.
Things started slowly for the UW as Colorados Don Strickland intercepted a Bollinger pass and returned it 91 yards for a touchdown to give the Buffs a 7-0 lead less than four minutes into the game. A 4-yard touchdown run by Anthony Davis tied it at 7-7 six minutes later, but CU regained the edge on a 10-yard scoring strike from Robert Hodge to D.J. Hackett as time ran out on the first quarter.
The Badgers scored twice in the second frame, with Bollinger connecting on TD strikes to Brandon Williams (10 yards) and Darrin Charles (7 yards) for a 21-14 halftime lead.
Colorado took the lead back in the third quarter on a 4-yard touchdown run by Chris Brown and an 11-yard TD pass from Zac Colvin to Hackett.
There was no more scoring until Bollingers 1-yard run sent the game into overtime.
It was the ninth time in his career (and fourth time this season) that Bollinger led the Badgers to victory after they trailed in the fourth quarter.
Wisconsin overcame four turnovers by limiting the high-powered Colorado running game to just 123 yards rushing and 200 yards in total offense. Buffs running back Chris Brown, the nations third-leading rusher, was held to 97 yards on 28 carries. The Badger defense forced three Buffs turnovers, including an interception by Jim Leonhard, his Big Ten record-tying 11th of the season.
The Badgers accumulated 356 yards of total offense, including 99 yards rushing from Davis and 82 on the ground from Bollinger. Bollinger was 12-24 passing for 163 yards and two scores. He was sacked just once.
It was the first overtime game in Alamo Bowl history and the fifth OT affair in UW history. Wisconsin is now 3-2 in overtime games.