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Halftime Notes: Northwestern 10, Wisconsin 0

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This is old school Big Ten football, and surprisingly, that might suit Northwestern

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

- The weather obviously isn't great but the Northwestern student turnout is poor. Less than half of the student sections are full.

- Between the first and second quarters, Jeff Budzien was honored on the field as a former All-American, and his name was revealed alongside other former NU All-Americans on the facing of the second deck at Ryan Field.

- Northwestern put together one of its best, and maybe most important drives of the season in the second quarter. It was 15 plays for 80 yards, and ended with a touchdown pass from Trevor Siemian to Dan Vitale in the back of the endzone.

- Pat Fitzgerald has been far more aggressive so far today than he was during the first four games, and that was encapsulated by a rather odd sequence on the touchdown drive. Northwestern had a 4th-and-4 at the Wisconsin 17-yard line. NU lined up for a field goal, but sprung a surprise and shifted to set up for a fake. However, Wisconsin coach Gary Anderson called a timeout. Fitz then proceeded to send out the offense again to try to draw Wisconsin offside, and even after it didn't work, he called a timeout and again sent the offense on the field. This time they did run a play, and converted with a pass to Miles Shuler.

- Wisconsin had occasional success on the ground, and Melvin Gordon is already over 100 yards rushing on just 10 carries, but Northwestern's defense is good enough to prevent the Badgers from marching down the field in increments rather than via a big play, and aside from Gordon, the Wisconsin offense has done nothing.

- Chris Gradone has once again been one of Northwestern's most important players. He dropped all three of his punts inside the 10-yard line, and that was one of the biggest reasons that Wisconsin's average starting field position in the first half was the 11-yard line.

- Wisconsin had 9 first-quarter passing yards. Nine. And the Badgers didn't get much better in the second quarter, finishing the half with 24. Not only is their passing game atrocious, but NU's front four is getting great pressure on Tanner McEvoy, and the defensive coverage has been solid.

- For the final drive of the half, McEvoy was bench for Joel Stave. We'll see who comes out to start the second half, but chances are it'll be Stave.

- Justin Jackson is really impressive, and was probably NU's best offensive player in the first half. Credit the offensive line for paving the way too, but Jackson's vision is awesome, especially for a true freshman. He has 16 carries for 82 yards through 30 minutes, and it really could be even more if not for a few shoestring tackles.

- Godwin Igwebuike, in for the injured Ibraheim Campbell at safety, had a great half on the defensive side of the ball. He made a big hit on McEvoy on a 3rd down stop in the first quarter, and came up with this huge interception to keep Wisconsin off the scoreboard early.