Different city. Different weather. Different Bowl game. Same matchup.
In a rematch of the 2017 Orange Bowl, Wisconsin (7-5) finishes off the 2018 campaign in New York City against Miami (7-5) in the Pinstripe Bowl At Yankee Stadium. Kickoff is set for 5:15 (EST).
With over 400 total yards, four touchdowns, three interceptions, the Badgers flipped the turnover chain on the Hurricanes in a 34-24 victory in Miami last season.
What was a top-tier bowl game matchup between two top 10 teams a season ago, the rematch has been knocked down a couple pegs this season that fell far short of both teams’ expectations.
But that doesn’t mean the game has to.
A matchup between the nation’s best running back in Jonathan Taylor, the Doak Walker Award winner, and one of the country’s most lockdown defenses in Miami isn’t a horrible way to close out 2018.
This will be the sixth time Wisconsin has met with Miami. After today, three of those six games will be in Bowl games and all three have come in the last 10 years.
Miami has joined Auburn, UCLA, and USC as the most frequent Bowl opponents for the Badgers.
This game will feel like a homecoming for Jack Coan and Aron Cruickshank who are from New York.
Wisconsin’s offense was in complete disarray the last time we saw them. UW was held to 359 total yards and had a season-high four turnovers, all Alex Hornibrook interceptions.
Miami comes in with one of the best defenses in the country. The Hurricanes rank in the top 25 nationally in all four major statistical categories, including No. 2 in total defense.
While Wisconsin’s offense has been wildly inconsistent at times this season, Miami’s hasn’t been any better.
Miami has struggled through the air all season after going between Malik Rosier, the 2017 starter, and N’Kosi Perry, who got himself in some off-the-Field drama on social media earlier this month.
After listening to Miami head coach Mark Richt from the Miami media, it’s clear they have some locker room distractions. The Badgers, on the other hand, have had one thing on their mind since November 24 when they walked off the field at Camp Randall following the disappointing loss to Minnesota: send the seniors out on the right note.
With a month off to get at least relatively healthy, I expect we see a much different UW team today than the one we saw in the regular season finale to Minnesota.
Wisconsin 23, Miami 21.