Why the Wisconsin Badgers will win the Big Ten
Wisconsin has been a force in the Big Ten for the last decade. The Badgers have consistently won more games than anyone would expect. Over the last couple of years, the Badgers have gotten over the proverbial hump, winning the conference and representing the Big Ten in the Rose Bowl. The new question has to do with this year. What will happen in 2012 when the Badgers face tough competition from the rest of the Big Ten? Can Wisconsin win again? The Badgers have what it takes to get the job done this season. They will win the league once again.
Wisconsin will replace Paul Chryst
Paul Chryst led the Wisconsin offense from 2005 through last season. The former Badger player helped to put together a culture of excellence for the offense there. He helped develop a culture of toughness in the offensive linemen and running backs. Can Wisconsin replace what he brought to the table? Chances are that they can do that. Bret Bielema has been a steadying force in Madison over the last few years. He will help to ensure that the culture of toughness remains, even after Chryst left his alma mater for the rebuilding job at Pittsburgh.
Power in the backfield
Monte Ball and James White have been two of the best running backs in the country. Last season, the combined to be a bruising force that led Wisconsin to the Rose Bowl. This year, both backs are back and better than ever. They have both been named to the Doak Walker Award preseason watch list. While Ball is a legitimate Heisman candidate, you cannot sleep on White, either. This combination gives Wisconsin a legitimate identity on offense. They have depth and talent. This is the primary reason why Wisconsin will win the Big Ten in 2012. They will run over people with the superior strength coming out of their backfield.
The Big Ten is still rebuilding
Ohio State used to be the class of the Big Ten. They have been thrown into rebuilding mode, though. Michigan is on the up and up, but they do not have the chops to challenge the Badgers. The Badgers will meet a difficult game at Nebraska, but their schedule also sets up quite well. They avoid Michigan and get both Michigan State and Ohio State at home. More importantly, they get those teams late in the season, which means they can break in a new quarterback comfortably. There just is not a team in the Big Ten that has what it takes to tackle the Badgers in 2012. They will continue their league dominance for at least one more season.