Miami Football attempts to even all-time series with Wisconsin


The Miami football team enters the Pinstripe Bowl game against Wisconsin having won two or the five meetings all-time with the Badgers. The teams last two meetings have been in bowl games both won by Wisconsin.

The Badgers won the 2009 Champs Sports Bowl (now the Camping World Bowl) in Orlando and the Orange Bowl last season. They also won the teams’ first meeting in 1958, 20-0. The Miami football team entered that game ranked 15th in the country and Wisconsin was 14th.

The next two games came in 1988 and ’89 at the height of the Miami football dynasty. It was a few years away from Wisconsin’s first trip to the Rose Bowl under Barry Alvarez and only the fourth in program history. The Badgers have made seven trips to the Rose Bowl since, including their first under Alvarez in 1994.

The Hurricanes earned a 23-3 victory over Wisconsin in 1988 in Miami. They destroyed Wisconsin 51-3 in 1989 in Madison. Miami went on to win their third National Championship in seven years following a 12-1 season in 1989.

Miami seemed primed to defeat Wisconsin in last year’s Orange Bowl after taking a 14-3 lead in the first quarter. A Travis Homer five-yard touchdown run, followed by a 39-yard DeeJay Dallas scamper 2:32 later brought Miami back from a 3-0 deficit.

The game got off to a ragged start with Wisconsin star Freshman running back Jonathan Taylor losing a fumble on the Badgers opening series. Miami’s usually reliable kicker Michael Badgley missed a field goal on Miami’s first series.

Three of the next four series featured scores. Wisconsin opened the scoring with a Rafael Gaglianone 35-yard field on the following series. Homer’s touchdown gave Miami the lead on the ensuing series. The Badgers went three-and-out after the Homer touchdown. Dallas then ran in his touchdown on the next Miami series.

A Malik Rosier interception seemed to tip the momentum. Wisconsin took over at the Miami 23 and two plays later cut the lead to four with an Alex Hornibrook to Danny Davis touchdown pass. Miami three-and-outs on the next two series led to Wisconsin touchdowns and gave the Badgers a 24-14 lead at halftime.

Both teams scored ten points in the second half and Wisconsin went on to a 34-24 win in the Orange Bowl to take the lead in the all-time series at 3-2. The Badgers tied the series in 2009 with the Champs Sports Bowl victory.

Wisconsin dominated in their Champs Sports Bowl victory but turnovers and penalties kept the game close. Wisconsin had three turnovers to Miami’s one and six penalties for 60 yards to the Hurricanes three for 30. The Badgers outgained Miami 430 total yards to 249.

Wisconsin Sophomore running back John Clay was the game MVP with 121 yards and two rushing touchdowns on 22 carries. Clay also had one reception for six yards. Montee Ball who would go to an incredible career at Wisconsin ran for 61 yards on 15 carries.

Wisconsin quarterback Scott Tolzein who would go on to play in the NFL contributed 260 yards passing. Badgers tight end Lance Kendricks who has had an NFL career of his own had seven receptions for 128 yards. Garret Graham had six catches for 77 yards for the Badgers.

In what sounds like a broken record and too close for comfort in the present, Miami couldn’t get anything going offensively. The Hurricanes ran for 61 yards on 23 carries for an average of 2.65 yards per carry. Miami quarterback Jacory Harris threw for 188 yards on 16 of 29 with one touchdown.

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The Miami running game is going to have to show up against Wisconsin in the Pinstripe Bowl. The Hurricanes need Homer and Dallas to have a good game throughout to keep the Badgers defense honest. Otherwise, Wisconsin will dare the Miami quarterbacks to beat them through the air.