BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — The Wisconsin defense forced three turnovers and fullback Alec Ingold scored three touchdowns as the Badgers beat Indiana 45-17 to move to 9-0 for the first time since 2004.
Play of the Game
Wisconsin trailed 10-7 midway through the second quarter when outside linebacker Tyler Johnson ripped the ball free from Morgan Ellison just before he hit the turf. Though officials initially said Ellison was down — and the whistle blew — a mad scramble for the ball ensued and the Badgers recovered. It then went to replay and officials determined it was indeed a fumble, giving Wisconsin the ball deep in Indiana territory. Two plays later, the Badgers took a lead they would not relinquish.
Offense: Jonathan Taylor
After missing nearly three quarters against Illinois with a leg injury, the freshman running back was a force against Indiana. He took his first carry for 45 yards and finished the day with 183 — his sixth game of at least 100 yards this season. Taylor showed great vision on his touchdown, taking a jet sweep, cutting up and then out to get free. Wisconsin’s offense is a different animal when he’s on the field, even if he wasn’t necessarily 100 percent.
Defense: Joe Ferguson
Subbing in for an injured D’Cota Dixon, the senior safety was involved in all three of Wisconsin’s takeaways. He recovered the pivotal fumble that led to a touchdown, and then had a pair of second-half interceptions that led to touchdowns. According to UW, Ferguson has been involved in six of Wisconsin’s 19 takeaways this season.
Dixon has been very good and the Badgers are better with him on the field, but Ferguson has been a nice fill-in when needed, including on Saturday.
Special Teams: Wisconsin’s punting unit
The duo of Connor Allen and Anthony Lotti combined to punt four times and none were returned. They also dropped two of them inside the 20-yard line, forcing the Hoosiers to start deep in their own territory.
In their own words
Wisconsin fullback Alec Ingold talks about his three touchdown day.
In Case You Missed It
— Wisconsin was hit hard by injuries on Saturday. The Badgers lost linebacker Chris Orr to a leg injury in the first quarter, safety D’Cota Dixon to a leg injury in the second quarter and then wide receiver Quintez Cephus also to a leg injury in the third quarter.
— Wide receiver Danny Davis returned to the field after missing the past two games with a leg injury. He finished with one catch for 10 yards.
— When Indiana went up 7-0 in the first quarter, it was the first time since the Big Ten opener that Wisconsin had trailed.
Inside the Numbers
15 — That’s the number of games Wisconsin has won in a row with Alex Hornibrook under center.
18 — That’s the number of pass break-ups cornerback Nick Nelson has this season, just one short of the school record.
14 — That’s the number of touchdowns Alec Ingold has in his career after scoring three on Saturday. He’s averaging a touchdown every six times he touches the ball.
10-0 — That would be Wisconsin’s record if it beats Iowa next Saturday. The Badgers have never been 10-0.
Wisconsin (9-0, 6-0) will welcome Iowa to Camp Randall Stadium next Saturday. The home team hasn’t won in the series since 2008.