Which way is Wisconsin headed?

Originally Published: September 17, 2003
By Herb Gould | Special to
Wisconsin's 23-5 meltdown against Nevada-Las Vegas, coupled with up-and-down performances in opening wins over West Virginia and Akron, raises the question of whether the Badgers are headed for their fourth straight disappointing season since they went to back-to-back Rose Bowls in 1998 and 1999.

Wisconsin hasn't had a winning season in Big Ten play since '99, and the offensive line, which allowed a combined 18 sacks against Northern Illinois and UNLV in nonconference struggles the last two years, isn't measuring up the way it did when the Badgers were marching to Pasadena.

How much of that is recruiting and how much of it is development is an open question. But critics are second-guessing another recruiting decision, to pass on Milwaukee-area product John Navarre, who's off to a fine start as Michigan's senior quarterback. Ironically, Wisconsin quarterback Jim Sorgi is from Michigan.