Randle El has broken Wisconsin hearts before
By Mark Concannon
Steelers wide receiver Antwaan Randle El had answered many reporters questions about the Green Bay Packers when I reminded him about a game he had played against another opponent from Wisconsin in his football past. He eagerly joined me on a trip down memory lane.
"We put up 63, or something like that," Randle El recalled correctly. It was October 6th, 2001 when Randle El, then a quarterback at Indiana, came into Camp Randall and led the Hoosiers to a stunning 63-32 victory over the Badgers, establishing what is still a UW record for most points scored by an opponent in a single game.
Randle El said his team came out of the tunnel breathing fire.
"You have to remember they put 55 on us three years before. So we had some get back to go get and we were huntin,' we were ready to go get em."
The Hoosiers scored three touchdowns on their first seven plays from scrimmage and before many Badger fans had wandered in from the bars on Regent Street, Indiana led 32-0 after the first quarter.
"It was like a video game," Randle El said. "It was awesome to put up that many points and play as well as we played. That we wanted to come out the gate and go after 'em and go get 'em and we did just that. Passing the ball, running the ball. I was running the ball. We were catching the ball down the field. It was a big time game."
Randle El rushed for 182 yards on 14 carries and passed for 182 on just 8 completions. The Hoosiers finished the game with 449 yards rushing and 631 total yards.
"We wanted more. They kept puttin' it on us three years ago. We remembered and when we got the opportunity we were not gonna let up. Offensive coordinator and Cam, (IU head coach Cam Cameron) they kept putting their foot on the gas."
Randle El, who has never started at quarterback in the NFL, he's played for pay as a wide receiver and kick returner, was one of the most prolific QB's in NCAA history. He became the first college quarterback in Division One to rush for 3000 yards and pass for 6000, the first to have over 2500 total yards in four consecutive years and the first to pass and run for 40 touchdowns.
Versatility has always been Randle El's strong suit. He also played basketball under Bob Knight at Indiana and was on IU's baseball team. And he is the only wide receiver in NFL history to throw a touchdown pass in the Super Bowl, five years ago against Seattle. Randle El, one of the most outgoing players in the NFL who can never be accused of underselling himself, smiled broadly when he told reporters he'd like to catch, run and pass for a touchdown Sunday but "it would be okay if I didn't, as long as we get the 'W.'"