I hope it's been a good week so far for all of you, I know it's been a fun one for myself so far. It's nearly the weekend and I think that it's time to take a deep breath, grab your favorite beverage and join us as we take a look around the web in our weekly THIRSTY THURSDAY presented by American Retro Bar NYC so like always, if you are in Manhattan, especially midtown take your butt to the American Retro Bar and sport your best Badgers gear as we kick some Sparty butt this weekend. They'll have their normal drink specials of 3$ PBR Tall Boys and 8$ Pitchers of Bud Light/Rolling Rock. Tell them WiscoBadgers.com sent you and they'll love you even more!
It's been an interesting week leading up to this game, well interesting in the fact that you've heard exactly this: (insert cricket sound) out of the Badgers. They've chosen to take a talk with your pads approach to this game, but that hasn't stopped Michigan State from talking, according to Jeff Potrykus at JSOnline. Edwin Baker has not been able to let go of the Rose Bowl "snub" last year. My advice, LET IT GO MAN. If you took care of business like we did against Iowa you wouldn't have to worry about it, now would you? Oh and that ass kicking you got from Alabama really showed just how pissed off you were about that snub, huh? Ya, I didn't think so. Lest we also forget Jerel Worthy's trash talking of Russell Wilson after his signing and the vaunted "60 Minutes of Unnecessary Roughness" that MSU started to back away from this week. Talk is cheap my Sparty friends, let the pads do the talking and then you've earned the right to pop off if you so choose.
Along those lines there's a great article by Brian Bennett over at ESPN.com about the Spartans Defense playing with "Swag". It's a very good article about one of the best defenses so far this season in FBS football.
Over at The Only Colors, a Michigan State website, they took a swing at a very daunting task, shutting down Wisconsin's offense. While I can appreciate the sentiment behind this article and it's attempt to say how they'd slow down or stop Bucky's offense, it's a swing and a miss for me. I put this question to Matt Charboneau of the Detroit News in our Badgers Power Hour this week and he had absolutely no answer. The especially rich part of this article was his assertion that you should treat Russell Wilson just like any other drop back passer. Well, if you're going to blitz the crap out of Wilson and not spy him you're in for a world of hurt and since your defense loves to blitz I say bring it on, I'm betting on Wilson to scramble for 1st downs or TD's with his legs or his arm over your ability to rush the passer. Wilson is not Denard Robinson, he's much smarter and much more experienced as a passer and rusher.
It's Thirsty Thursday and we finally had a decision about Spartans DE William Gholston, but it came from the Big Ten offices and not the Spartans Athletic Program. Gholston will not be in action this weekend against Wisconsin and that may end up being a blessing in disguise as the Nebraska game just may be more important to Sparty in the grand scheme of things. I personally agree with the suspension but I was very saddened that it took nearly an entire week to say "Um, sorry, you can't punch someone in the face and get away with it." I mean seriously MSU, it should've taken you all of 24 hours to say, ya, you're not going to be playing next week son. But what do I know, I'm just a lowly writer, right?
We've covered a ton of what MSU has been up to this week, but Wisconsin has an ace in the hole that wasn't there last year according to Adam Rittenberg of ESPN.com. That Ace in the Hole? It's Russell Wilson and his leadership. I couldn't agree more as both Arman and myself have been saying that he's Scott Tolzien with an arm, better QB I.Q., and a bit more poise and leadership on the field.
On a much lighter note, our friends over at Kegs 'N Eggs have a fun segment they do each week in which they simulate the biggest games each weekend, so you should check out what they think the score of this weeks games will be. Hint, you just might enjoy the Wisconsin score.
SI.com gave us a look at their crystal ball as we hit the mid-season point and it's unanimous, Wisconsin will play in the..... Ahh, you'll have to see for yourself. There are a ton of good things picked by their writers, so be sure to check out the full article, it's worth your time and beverage consumption!
Not a ton of news for the Badgers Basketball team, but the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll was released today and the Badgers came in 14th. I think it's a combination of Jordan Taylor and what he did to end 2010-11 and a sense of we're not going to underestimate a Bo Ryan coached team again from the coaches in this Poll.
Last up for your viewing pleasure is an interesting look at some major changes that are being proposed by coaches in College Basketball. I think a lot of the changes would clear up some of the stupid secondary violations around player contact and it would help coaches better evaluate players over the summer in a less chaotic situation.
Well, folks I hope you've gotten through your beverage of choice this week, it's sure to be a fun week ahead. Don't forget if you are in the Green Bay area to come on out to The Vault in De Pere on Saturday starting at 5:30pmCT as we bring you our 2nd edition of Wisconsin GameDay LIVE! ahead of the Badgers huge game against Michigan State. Join us for a ton of fun as we cheer on the Badgers to victory and as always... ON WISCONSIN!
UPDATE: Being the Big Ten junkie you tend to be as a Wisconsin fan I was watching BTN tonight and they had a segment on BTNLive, so I tweeted in a question... here you will see my question answered in their 5th quarter online content and it sparked a pretty good discussion of the game this Saturday in general. If you want to follow me on Twitter personally, you can find me @andycoppens