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Badgers Rose Bowl 2011 Report: Running Back Lineup?

What we do know is that the Badgers have three good running backs going into the 2011 Rose Bowl but with just days before the big game there is still speculation on their order in the lineup. As it sits right now the running back lineup for the Badgers is the same as it was in the final game with Ball first, White second, and Clay at third. Clay of course is an AP Third Team All-American so it is sort of a stunning turn of events that he could go from the lead back to third back due to injury but that is where we sit. Ball has come on strong for the Badgers in Clay's absence, in fact Ball looks like a completely different back than he used to hitting holes instead of running into his own men while also being a faster back as the season has gone on. In addition Ball does a great job of catching the football out of the backfield. White would start on all but maybe ten teams in the country because as a freshman he is scary good, he has all the moves you could want outside and he isn't afraid to go inside but he does make some dumb freshman mistakes loosing yardage in key situations.

John Clay because of his injury has slipped to being the third back right now according to the coaches, but should you buy the hype? Is this just another matter of the coaching staff messing with the other team while trying to motivate Clay? Supposedly Clay has the brace off and is now wearing just a sleeve on his knee so he must be pretty healthy, we would find it hard to believe that we wouldn't want Clay carrying the rock most of the time versus a supposedly great defense. There have been a lot of Clay haters out there with a lot of talk after his injury, but make no mistake Clay is still the back with the most talent on the roster. Clay has the most patience and the most vision, and while he didn't play much in the last game there was still the classic power play where he sent a tackling linebacker airborne for about five yards. Even if Clay can't hit the home run which we think he can he is our best to pick up consistent first downs which is what we need against TCU. Our guess is BB is just keeping TCU and Clay motivated, he is going to carry the rock a lot with maybe 3 touchdowns. If Clay doesn't play a lot there is some match-up problem we don't know about.

We are going to the 2011 Rose Bowl and will hopefully be updating while there but if not On Wisconsin, lets bring this one home.


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