Thursday, December 8, 2011

December 08, 2011
Today's look is at the other side of the ball; the defensive ends. Wisconsin took a blow early this season when their best defensive end went down with a broken foot suffered in practice.

The Badgers have the better "ranking" defensively, but are they the better defense? Take a look at today's match-up article and decide for yourself.

Oregon: At the beginning of the season, the Ducks were looking to replace the multi-talented hybrid defensive end Kenny Rowe. A new position had been created to take advantage of Rowe's versatility on defense. During the season, the frenetic pace at which Oregon played, gave the Ducks a chance to see a potential replacement for Rowe; Dion Jordan. Jordan had a good year in a back-up role to Rowe recording 33 tackles and 2 sacks in 2010. Early in the 2011 season, it became clear that Jordan was more than capable of filling the shoes of the departed Rowe. Nonetheless, it was not until mid-season that Jordan really began to make his presence felt.

Jordan opened the season with 3 tackles against LSU...

Wisconsin: While much is made of the Wisconsin power offense, very few people know about their defense. The defensive ends fit the mold of the "no-name defense" that their coaches love to talk about. The early part of 2011 began with David Gilbert, a junior from Coral Springs, Florida, getting the nod at one of the defensive end positions. After impressive performances during the first 4 games of the season, Gilbert broke his foot in practice. Gilbert was projected to miss 6-8 weeks, but as a junior who has not yet redshirted, Coach Bielema is looking to use a redshirt for this season. It is very unlikely that Gilbert will come back for the Rose Bowl. In his first four games, Gilbert had recorded 10 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and 3 sacks.

In his place another junior, Brendan Kelly (6-6, 255) stepped ...

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