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GREATEST BADGERS OF ALL TIME
Adam Duerson
August 22, 2008
Of all the heroes who took the field for Wisconsin, here's a roster for the ages
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August 22, 2008

Greatest Badgers Of All Time

Of all the heroes who took the field for Wisconsin, here's a roster for the ages

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The Alltime Badgers Team

GRANTED, SI's Alltime Wisconsin Team is largely plucked from the Barry Alvarez era (1990-2005), but the Badgers have been putting their stamp on college football dating to the 19th century, especially at the halfback position. In a perfect world, UW would line up eight backs on offense. We went with a more traditional formation.

OFFENSE

QB

RON VANDER KELEN

1962

Rose Bowl MVP, Heisman finalist in lone season

RB

RON DAYNE

1996-99

College's top rusher broke 200 yards 14 times

FB

ALAN AMECHE*

1951-54

Heisman winner led UW to only No. 1 rank, in '52

WR

LEE EVANS

1999-2003

Most receiving yards in a Big Ten season (1,575)

WR

PAT RICHTER*

1960-62

UW athletic director who hired Barry Alvarez

TE

TRAVIS BECKUM

2006-08

Tied UW record for receptions in a season (75)

T

AARON GIBSON

1996-98

400-pound Outland finalist cleared way for Dayne

T

JOE THOMAS

2003-06

Outland winner and future No. 3 draft pick

G

ARLIE MUCKS SR.

1914

Threw the discus at '12 Olympics

G

CASEY RABACH

1997-2000

Badgers ran for 10,903 yards during his tenure

C

BOB (RED) WILSON

1946-49

Big Ten MVP in '49; 10 seasons as big league catcher

DEFENSE

DE

TOM BURKE

1995-98

Big Ten-record 22 sacks in '98; four-year pro

DE

TAREK SALEH

1993-96

UW career sacks and tackles-for-loss leader

DT

WENDELL BRYANT

1998-2001

Game-sealing sack in '99 Rose Bowl as freshman

DT

TIM KRUMRIE

1979-82

Player of the week after '81 Michigan upset

LB

PETE MONTY

1993-96

Alvarez: "The best linebacker I've been around"

LB

HAL FAVERTY

1945, '48, '50-51

Team MVP on '51 D that scored 58 points

LB

NICK GREISEN

1998-2001

Five forced fumbles, 146 tackles as junior

CB

JAMAR FLETCHER

1998-2000

Thorpe winner in '00; seven INTs in each season

CB

TROY VINCENT

1988-91

'91 Big Ten co-defensive POY; five-time Pro Bowler

SS

DALE HACKBART

1957-59

Led '59 Rose Bowl team in rushing and passing

FS

JIM LEONHARD

2001-04

Tiny 5' 8" walk-on tied Big Ten INT record in '02 (11)

SPECIAL TEAMS

K

PAT O'DEA*

1896-99

The Kangaroo had 62-yard FG, 110-yard punt day

P

KEVIN STEMKE

1997-2000

School-record 44.5 yards per punt in '00

KR-PR

NICK DAVIS

1998-2001

Two PR scores in '98; another plus KR in '99

COACH

BARRY ALVAREZ

1990-2005

Bowl mark (8-3) is best for coaches with 11 games

*Inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame

RON VANDER KELEN
QB
CAREER: 1962
HIGHLIGHTS: Tops in Big Ten passing (1,582 yards) and total offense in his one year; ninth in Heisman voting

Inexperience did little to slow this Green Bay native, who was an unenrolled construction worker in '61. He returned for his senior year having played just 90 seconds of varsity ball, then threw three TDs in a 37-6 rout of No. 1 Northwestern before setting a Rose Bowl record with 401 yards in a loss to USC.

WENDELL BRYANT
DT
CAREER: 1998-2001
HIGHLIGHTS: 24 career sacks; All-America ('01)

The two-time Big Ten defensive lineman of the year's career game came versus Penn State in '01. He logged five sacks and a fumble recovery, delaying Joe Paterno from tying Bear Bryant's career wins mark.

NICK GREISEN
LB
CAREER: 1998-2001
HIGHLIGHTS: 145-plus tackles in each of his last two seasons; All-Big Ten ('00, '01)

Greisen's best work came during the '01 season, when he had 167 tackles. Typical of this plucky 'backer was his stand-up performance in a 20-17 win over Ohio State in Columbus, which included this sack. Late in the game Greisen keyed two stops that kept the Buckeyes out of easy field goal territory.

AARON GIBSON
T
CAREER: 1996-98
HIGHLIGHTS: All-America ('98)

The Biggest Man on Campus from Day One, Gibson arrived in Madison a gigantic 6' 7", 435 pounds. But he trimmed that below four bills and got his 40 time down to a respectable 5.35 seconds, which made him a devastating force when paired with roly-poly Ron Dayne.

PAT RICHTER
WR
CAREER: 1960-62
HIGHLIGHTS: All-America ('61, '62); Hall of Fame inductee

This native Madisonian introduced Wisconsin to the rapidly evolving Passing Era: his nation-high 817 receiving yards in '61 surpassed UW's previous single-season record by 430 yards.

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