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BHGP Thursday Q&A: Sure, Let's Talk Wisconsin

It’s Thursday, and Thursdays are for Q&As. Send your #B1G/Iowa questions to me and we’ll answer as many as possible. Horse questions are stupid.

Kinda bullcrap that Gordon's allowed to go OVER guys too.
Kinda bullcrap that Gordon's allowed to go OVER guys too.
Joe Robbins

Let's get after it. Our first question is about Not Iowa, and honestly I can't blame y'all.

First things first: Wisconsin is way, way underrated in the polls. That's mainly a factor of two things: one, its schedule is tougher than anyone else's in the Big Ten thus far on the high end, with trips to Tempe and Columbus already on the resume. Then there's the timing of the Arizona State loss, in multiple senses of the word: for one, the officials utterly botched the last play, letting the clock run out when it shouldn't have. The result came so late that many pollsters didn't actually see it happen. Then there's the early-morning deadline of the AP poll, forcing pollsters to get out their ballots before the Pac-12 could come right out and say the Badgers should have had one more play. So Wisconsin gets dinged in voting as if it had lost the game in legitimate fashion, which is not what happened.

If the Badgers continue to play the way they have basically all year, the polls will catch up to where Wisconsin ought to be, basically because I'm not sure Wisconsin's going to lose again all year. Who's the toughest opponent left? BYU? Penn State? Indiana? All those teams have to come to Madison, and the road games are Iowa, Illinois and Minnesota. Losing any of those games effectively ends Wisconsin's darkhorse BCS hopes, but as well it should, since a BCS-quality team wins all of those handily. And yes, that's not a remaining schedule that necessarily instills awe in pollsters, but if Wisconsin's not getting credit for how tough its first half of the season was, it's not exactly going to get held down when it has a 7-1 Big Ten record to show for itself.

As for the BCS... it's the middle of October, man. A LOT of teams are still in contention. How they all shake out has as much to do with Wisconsin's chances as anything the Badgers do. But yeah, Wisconsin's legit. That 35-6 win over Northwestern was legit. No getting around that.


Has it come to this? Are we blaming Iowa's mediocrity on the press box getting bigger?

The reason Kinnick doesn't have its mystique has virtually nothing to do with the environs, which are not fundamentally changed from the glory days in the first few years of the oughts. It's because Iowa has rarely been very good at football since 2006.

That and obviously the Nile Kinnick statue has put a curse on the program. OBVIOUSLY.

There is a considerable amount of time, discussion and effort that goes into the process of going from "idea" to "finished podcast theme," and a lot of times it just doesn't work and it gets scrapped, so I don't want to come across as if Pat just presses a "new podcast theme" button every six months or so and we all squeal with surprise and delight after it happens.

WITH THAT ALL OUT OF THE WAY, though, I think the obvious ultimate double black diamond level of podcast theme appropriation is "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)." Maybe we'll get to that in 2017 or so.

Tell the 5-year-old who wrote this question I'm very proud of him or her for writing jokes at such a young age.


The point of practically everything we do on BHGP, this included, is to inform and entertain. Some wonderful things spring from that, including our awesome, awesome community and traffic that we can be happy about even when Iowa's not so good at sports. For this we are genuinely and profoundly grateful, every single one of us here.

But if our interaction gets reduced to "something something horse" and you want to call it a day, that's your right, but it gets less enjoyable to put in the work on things like Q&A posts. It's okay if you don't have a real question you want to ask. Really! I don't go to the 99% of my followers who don't respond to the Q&A tweets and harangue them about their desire to do something else. You either have a question or you don't, and most don't; that's just how it works.

But if all you've got is a stupid question--and let's be clear, like 70-80% of the responses on these things I get anymore are intentionally stupid, "hey everyone look how detached I am"-type questions--odds are all I'm going to be able to respond with is a stupid answer, and then everyone's just being stupid and if you want that there's a whole bunch of recruiting site message boards you can frequent where everyone's quite happily stupid all the time. It's shangri-duh over there in those parts.

I know this comes across as humorless and snippy, and that's not fun for anyone and I'm sorry for that, but seriously guys, the last thing I want is for a Q&A to feel like a chore and we're kind of getting there.