No. 14 Wisconsin 38, Northwestern 7
MADISON, Wis. (AP) _ The nation’s top-ranked defense joined in the fun Saturday as the Wisconsin Badgers got touchdowns via the pass, the run and on blocked punt and punt returns in a 38-7 thumping of Northwestern.
Ron Dayne ran over the Wildcats for 168 yards on 22 carries, Mike Samuel threw for a touchdown and ran for one and freshman punt returner Nick Davis and sophomore defensive back Ryan Marks also got into the end zone for No. 14 Wisconsin (4-0, 1-0 Big Ten).
The Badgers stretched their shutout streak to 13 quarters before Nick Kreinbrink’s 46-yard touchdown pass to diving freshman Sam Simmons with four seconds left.
The Wildcats (2-2, 0-1) blew their only other chance when Brian Gowins shanked a 40-yard field goal midway through the fourth quarter after left tackle Bryan LaBelle’s 15-yard penalty for a late hit stalled the drive.
Samuel ran for a 1-yard TD and threw a 60-yard scoring pass to Chris Chambers after Ryan Marks’ 8-yard fumble return for a TD as the Badgers built a 21-0 halftime lead.
After Matt Davenport’s 31-yard field goal, Dayne ran untouched for a 46-yard TD following Eric Mahlik’s recovery of Gavin Hoffman’s fumble for a 31-0 lead.
Davis returned J.J. Standring’s punt 68 yards for a 38-0 lead.
Tim Rosga, who recovered Gowins’ 18-yard ``onside kick″ to start the game and returned it to the Northwestern 37, broke through and blocked Standring’s first punt, and Marks recovered it and ran eight yards for the touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
On the ensuing kickoff, Marks broke the wedge and dumped returner Tyrone Gooch at the Northwestern 12.
The Badgers moved 76 yards in 16 plays to make it 14-0 on Samuel’s option keeper on fourth-and-goal from the 1. Samuel rolled right, stopped and cut into the end zone untouched.
After free safety Jason Doering intercepted a pass from Hoffman intended for D’Wayne Bates at the Wisconsin 12, the Badgers struck quickly for a three-touchdown cushion.
Dayne’s 26-yard run put the Badgers at their 40, and Samuel dropped back and pump-faked. Cornerback Harold Blackmon bit, allowing Chambers to break free downfield.
Blackmon recovered but missed the tackle at the Northwestern 25, and linebacker Conrad Emmerich did the same at the 20 as Chambers cut back inside for a 60-touchdown and a 21-0 advantage.
Bates caught seven passes for 96 yards, surpassing Richard Buchanan as the Wildcats’ career leader in receiving yards with 2,499, 25 more than Buchanan had from 1988-90.
Barry Alvarez (53-41-4) surpassed Milt Bruhn as the winningest coach in Wisconsin’s modern history. With 65 victories, only Phil King, who coached against a variety of high schools, small colleges and medical schools at the turn of the century, has more.