Badgers head to Purdue for Big Ten opener

Published: Sep. 22, 2023 at 2:46 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 22, 2023 at 4:28 PM CDT
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WEST LAFAYETTE, In. (WMTV) - Wisconsin football is on the road for the second time this season as they take on Purdue for the Big Ten opener at Ross-Ade Stadium at 6 p.m.

Wisconsin has won 16 consecutive games in the series including nine straight in West Lafayette. Purdue’s last win over the Badgers came in 2004 and its last home win came in 1997. Last season, Wisconsin beat Purdue 35-24 for Homecoming. Running back Braelon Allen rushed for 114 yards on 16 carries for a touchdown. Wide receiver Skyler Bell had four catches for 87 yards and a touchdown.

Safety Hunter Wohler was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week for his 10 tackles, two interception performance against Georgia Southern. The junior from Muskego leads the Badgers in tackles and sit second in the Big Ten in total tackles at 34. He leads Power Five defenders with 26 solo tackles.

The Badgers picked off the Eagles five times last week, the most interceptions in a game for Wisconsin since at least 1988.

Allen rushed for 94 yards on 12 carries and a pair of touchdowns against Georgia Southern. He also caught a pair of passes. The junior from Fond du Lac has rushed for 15 Big Ten touchdowns over the last two years, tied for most in that time frame.

Running back Chez Mellusi added another 61 yards on 15 carries and a touchdown. His 89 yard touchdown run against Buffalo is the longest run in college football.

Allen and Mellusi continue to be one of the most dominant running back duos in the country. They have rushed for 4,221 yards since 2021, the most Big Ten running backs. The pair out-rushed seven of the 14 conference programs during their time at UW.

Quarterback Tanner Mordecai was 19/30 for 236 yards. He rush for 36 yards, including a touchdown.

This is Wisconsin’s 128th season of Big Ten play. In the modern Big Ten, only Ohio State has won more conference games than the Badgers since 2014. The Buckeyes have won 70, while the Badgers have won 54.


  • Wisconsin defense- The Badgers got their first defensive turnovers against Georgia Southern, while tallying six sacks. Wohler shined bright as Wisconsin looks to continue to force turnovers.
  • Red zone scoring- The Badgers have scored on all 12 red zone possessions, good for nine touchdowns and three field goals on the year. They were 5/5 on touchdowns against Georgia Southern.
  • Wisconsin rushing- Purdue ranked 11th in the Big Ten in average rush defense, allowing 132.7 yards per game. The Badgers average 204 yards on the ground. Allen and Mellusi can be big for the Badgers in West Lafayette.

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