The Wisconsin Badgers (9-4) capped their season with a 20-13 victory over Arizona State in the Las Vegas Bowl, effectively sending UW into the off-season.
Wisconsin’s offense fell well short of expectations in 2021, finishing 88th in total offense, 21st in rushing offense and 120th in passing offense.
Wisconsin’s offense faced one significant obstacle it couldn’t overcome this season – it was turnover prone. On the year, Wisconsin had the eighth most turnovers lost in college football (23). That’s simply unacceptable if you’re going to play Wisconsin’s brand of football and expect to win.
Right now, Wisconsin is set lose six preferred starters (Josh Seltzner, Logan Bruss, Jake Ferguson, Danny Davis, Kendric Pryor and possibly John Chenal). That leaves a significant number of snaps and overall production needing to be replaced.
That said, it’s never too early to take a look ahead at what next season’s offense might look like.
NEXT… an early look at the projected two-deep ahead of spring ball
QB: Graham Mertz (R-JR), Chase Wolf (R-SR).
Nov. 13, 2021; Madison, Wisconsin; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Graham Mertz (5) throws a pass during the first quarter against the Northwestern Wildcats at Camp Randall Stadium. Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
RB: Braelon Allen (SO), Chez Mellusi (SR)
Dec. 30, 2021; Paradise, Nevada; Wisconsin Badgers running back Braelon Allen (0) runs up field against the Arizona State Sun Devils during the 2021 Las Vegas Bowl at Allegiant Stadium. Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
FB: Riley Nowakowski (R-SO), Jackson Acker (R-FR)
Nov. 6, 2021; Piscataway, New Jersey; Wisconsin Badgers running back Jackson Acker (34) carries the ball as Rutgers Scarlet Knights defensive back Christian Izien (0) pursues during the second half at SHI Stadium. Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
WR: Chimere Dike (JR), Skyler Bell (R-FR)
Nov. 6, 2021; Piscataway, New Jersey; Wisconsin Badgers wide receiver Chimere Dike (13) celebrates his interception against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during the first half at SHI Stadium. Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
WR: Markus Allen (R-FR), AJ Abbott (R-SR)
Nov. 6, 2021; Piscataway, New Jersey; Wisconsin Badgers wide receiver Markus Allen (4) gains yards after the catch as Rutgers Scarlet Knights defensive back Joe Lusardi (37) pursues during the second half at SHI Stadium. Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
TE: Jack Eschenbach (R-SR), Clay Cundiff (R-JR)
Nov. 13, 2021; Madison; Wisconsin Badgers tight end Jack Eschenbach (82) rushes with the football as Northwestern Wildcats linebacker Chris Bergin (28) defends during the second quarter at Camp Randall Stadium. Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
LT: Logan Brown (R-JR), Nolan Rucci (R-FR)
Dec. 30, 2021; Paradise, Nevada; Wisconsin Badgers players pose for photos with the 2021 Las Vegas Bowl Championship trophy after defeating the Arizona State Sun Devils 20-13 at Allegiant Stadium. Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
LG: Tanor Bortolini (R-SO), Michael Furtney (R-SR)
Wisconsin Badgers offense huddles during an NCAA college football game against the Army Black Knights, Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, in Madison, Wis. The Badgers won 20-14. David Stluka/Wisconsin Athletic Communications
C: Joe Tippmann (R-JR), Cormac Sampson (R-SR)
Wisconsin offensive lineman Joe Tippmann (75) looks for someone to block during the first quarter of their game against Eastern Michigan Saturday, September 11, 2021 at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wisconsin
RG: Jack Nelson (R-SO), Trey Wedig (R-SO)
Wisconsin offensive lineman Jack Nelson (79) proceeds pass protection during the second quarter in the Badgers’ 24-0 win over Illinois on Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois.
RT: Tyler Beach (R-SR), Riley Mahlman (R-FR)
Sept. 7, 2019; Madison; Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Tyler Beach (65) during the game against the Central Michigan Chippewas at Camp Randall Stadium. Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports