A classic wide receiver battle was about to unfold in Madison on a boisterous weekend highlighted by Halloween and homecoming. Camp Randall Stadium is daunting to take on for opponents without these variables, but Michigan State had some weapons to unload on a often defense optional Wisconsin squad. Both the Spartans and Badgers needed victories to strengthen the heartbeat of their bowl hopes. Wisconsin receiver Lee Evans and Spartan wide-out Charles Rogers were both prepared to resuscitate their team’s season.
Evans had been notching a record breaking year with his hands of glue and leaping ability. He got the scoreboard operator working first with a jump and catch over the defender’s helmet and a short jaunt into the endzone. Rogers nabbed a touchdown of his own in the first half and these teams appeared evenly matched at the break tied at fourteen.
However, the second half proved that when Wisconsin hit, Michigan State hit back harder. Lee Evans scored on a 70-yard rainbow. Michigan State’s offense hit their accelerator, found a rapid speed, and hit cruise control. They cast a spell over the Badger secondary leaving them delirious while Spartan receivers pulled everything from the sky except the clouds. Rogers inserted the final dagger with an 87-yard reception resulting in an insurmountable deficit for Wisconsin to overcome.
Michigan State closed the day with a 42-28 win that adjusted their tracks toward a bowl possibility. The Barry Alvarez administration has always prided itself on a clamping defense that asphyxiated offenses and secured victories. Now, with a surrendering group of defenders, Camp Randall is looking less intimidating for incomers. Moreover, Wisconsin is now forced to win its final three against formidable foes in order to secure bowl eligibility. Much like the Badger defense, that notion has a lot of holes.