Game 67: #19 Fresno State @ #22 Wisconsin

September has barely been dented and the Bulldogs are being called a fairy tale story. With two impressive victories in their pockets over Colorado in Boulder and against defending Pac Ten co-champ Oregon State, they seemed to fit into Cinderella’s gown rather well. Fresno State head coach Pat Hill has glued the motto, “anyone, any time, any place” to his squad. Led by touted quarterback David Carr, the Bulldogs were aiming at carving another notch in their resume of monumental upsets. Badger fans were warned of Fresno State’s power, but a west coast team from a mid-major conference posed little threat to the Camp Randall crazies gathering in Madison.

On an overcast Saturday, the Badgers looked to prove the crowd right by leading 20-10 at halftime. However, Fresno State’s clock was far from hitting midnight. Astonishment struck the faces of Badger fans when Fresno State kick returner, Bernard Berrian, took the opening kickoff of the second half and returned it 96 yards for a touchdown. The brazen Bulldogs opted to go for two after the score and succeeded, squeezing the Wisconsin lead to two. Concern swept the stadium as the Badgers needed to recapture momentum on the ensuing drive. However, Wisconsin quarterback Jim Sorgi threw an interception and four plays later, David Carr tossed the leading score into the endzone. Another two point conversion gave Fresno State a 26-20 advantage. The lead change only took a couple minutes off the second half clock and that short time was enough to wilt the enthusiasm of the Wisconsin crowd.

The situation grew suddenly grim in Camp Randall as Fresno State’s top twenty ranking was gathering validity. Wisconsin was unable to recover from the second half blast and the Bulldogs exited with a 32-20 victory. Fresno State absorbed the victory with extreme professionalism as though winning on the road at Big Ten venues was commonplace. Stunned Wisconsin fans sulked as they shuffled out of Camp Randall. From a national perspective, respect flipped faces as the Bulldogs owned the spotlight and the Badgers got the hook.


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