Capital One Bowl 2014: Live Game Grades, Analysis for Wisconsin Badgers

David Fitzgerald IICorrespondent IJanuary 1, 2014

MADISON, WI - NOVEMBER 16: Melvin Gordon #25 of the Wisconsin Badgers celebrates after making a touchdown during the first half of play against the Indiana Hoosiers at Camp Randall Stadium on November 16, 2013 in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

Final Score: South Carolina 34, Wisconsin 24

Wisconsin (9-4) lost a competitive Capital One Bowl 34-24 to South Carolina (11-2) on New Year's Day. 

For the full box score, check out

Check out the grades for Wisconsin's performance below, and let us know in the comments below or on Twitter if you agree or disagree with the grades on Wisconsin!


Wisconsin Game Grades vs. South Carolina
Positional Unit1st Half GradeFinal Grade
Pass OffenseB-D
Run OffenseAA-
Pass DefenseDF
Run DefenseA-B
Special TeamsCB-
Capital One Bowl, January 1, 2014

Game Analysis for the Wisconsin Badgers

Pass Offense: Joel Stave found some effectiveness in the first half, but he became the invisible man in the second before being injured. Curt Phillips could not generate any offense (two interceptions) and the lack of a passing threat wrapped the game up for Carolina.

Run Offense: Melvin Gordon and James White ran roughshod all over the Carolina defensive front, each eclipsing 100 rushing yards. Had the Badgers converted big red-zone plays and avoided turnovers, this effort would have been more than enough to win.

Pass Defense: Wisconsin surrendered another career passing performance, this time to Connor Shaw (22-for-25 for 311 yards and five total touchdowns). Pressure did not get to Shaw early and good coverage did not matter as Shaw made numerous perfect throws.

Run Defense: Although Mike Davis was largely contained, Shaw burned the Badgers with his feet at critical times. Over-pursuit by the defensive line with no spy on Shaw led to costly first-down conversions.

Special Teams: Jack Russell missed an important field goal that cost the Badgers a chance to win. Kenzel Doe’s 91-yard touchdown return kept Wisconsin in the game when Stave went down.

Coaching: Gary Andersen’s defense could not figure out how to stop South Carolina, which is simply unacceptable. Staff also made some questionable passing calls when running was dominant.


ORLANDO, FL - JANUARY 01:  Melvin Gordon #25 of the Wisconsin Badgers runs for a big gain in the first half against the South Carolina Gamecocks during the Capital One Bowl on January 1, 2014 in Orlando, Florida.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

1st-Half Analysis for the Wisconsin Badgers

Pass Offense: Joel Stave came out to a rocky start, throwing a critical interception, but he pulled it together to throw two touchdowns. The play-action pass game is killing South Carolina in important spots thanks to the run game's success.

Run Offense: The Badgers offensive line dominated the line of scrimmage and made huge holes for all three running backs. Melvin Gordon and James White could both end up over 100 yards as Wisconsin is already well past 150 yards rushing.

Pass Defense: The Badgers brought pressure consistently to try and slow down Connor Shaw, but he was still incredibly efficient on 11-for-13 passing for 132 yards and a touchdown. Wisconsin also fell for Spurrier’s “trickeration” on another passing touchdown.

Run Defense: Mike Davis did not find much running room against the aggressive Wisconsin defense, but Shaw burned the Badgers a couple of times. A successful effort overall despite the successes in the passing game for Carolina.

Special Teams: A fake field goal was executed poorly on Wisconsin’s first drive, but there were no other opportunities to really make a difference. The Badgers must keep up the good coverage.

Coaching: Both teams have called a good game offensively, so expect a close game late. Gary Andersen is imposing the type of game he wants, which bodes well going forward.