StaTuesday: The dominating Badgers defense in 2015

BY Dave Heller • January 12, 2016

The college football season is officially over and while the Wisconsin Badgers hadn't played since Dec. 30, they were affected by Alabama's performance in the national championship game.

The Crimson Tide allowed 40 points to Clemson, which allowed Wisconsin to overtake them and lead the nation in points allowed per game, just the third time the Badgers have ever led the nation in that category.

 Team   Games   Points   Points/G 
Wisconsin 13 178 13.7
Ohio State 13 196 15.1
Alabama 15 227 15.1
Boston College 12 183 15.3
Missouri 12 194 16.2

Wisconsin also finished second in total defense (yards allowed per game) -- and if Boston College was good enough to play in a bowl game, perhaps the Badgers would have been No. 1.

Team  Games   Plays   Yards   Yards/Play   Yards/G 
Boston College 12 750 3052 4.07 254.3
Wisconsin 13 791 3491 4.41 268.5
Alabama 15 963 4145 4.30 276.3
Michigan 13 818 3649 4.46 280.7
San Diego State 14 863 4022 4.66 287.3

Note: No other team allowed fewer than 300 yards per game.

The Badgers were seventh in the nation in passing defense (yards/game), but second in opposing passer rating.

Team  Games   Comp. %   TD   INT   Rating 
Michigan 13 47.5 8 10 94.61
Wisconsin 13 49.1 7 12 96.85
Northwestern 13 54.0 5 12 98.89
Marshall 13 49.8 15 15 100.68
Boston College 12 51.7 9 13 104.57

Finally, yes, Wisconsin also ranked highly in rush defense. The Badgers were No. 4 in yards per game but also fourth in rush average allowed.

Team  Games   Avg   Yards/G 
Boston College 12 2.39 83.17
Alabama 15 2.43 75.73
Akron 13 2.95 92.92
Wisconsin 13 3.13 95.38
San Diego State 14 3.16 108.71

Will the Badgers be able to dominate again in 2016? Well Wisconsin returns many of its starters on defense. But, of course, the caveat to all of this is the Badgers won't have defensive coordinator Dave Aranda, who left for LSU.

Nevertheless, the Badgers can lay claim to being one of the best college football defenses in the 2015 season.

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