MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin is 2-0 after beating Florida Atlantic, 31-14 Saturday afternoon.
Wisconsin was coming off a 59-10 drubbing of Utah State in which the Badgers scored 59 unanswered points to turn a close game into a rout. Florida Atlantic opened the Lane Kiffin era with a 42-19 loss against Navy. Stay here for live updates, scores and analysis.
Wisconsin-Utah State live updates, score
Here’s a quarter-by-quarter look at how everything has unfolded so far.
Wisconsin 31, Florida Atlantic 14 (FINAL): Wisconsin is 2-0 after beating Lane Kiffin and the Owls. The game looked like it would finish with a bigger margin than 17 points, but the Badgers still picked up another win at Camp Randall Stadium.
Wisconsin 31, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q4, 6:15): Badgers kicker Rafael Gaglianone misses a 37-yard field goal wide left. Before that kick, he had looked very good early this season after sitting out much of last season with a back injury.
Wisconsin 31, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q4, 12:45): FAU likely doesn’t have the offensive firepower to keep pace with Wisconsin, but this has been a pretty respectable effort from the Owls. They made the Badgers work for this one. FAU trailed 14-0 early and very well could have been blown out at Camp Randall Stadium. Wisconsin has several mistakes to clean up in the week ahead before a tough road game against BYU.
Wisconsin 31, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q3, 1:12): Jonathan Taylor responds from a fumble earlier in the quarter with his third touchdown run. Taylor now has 26 carries for 223 yards and those 3 TDs. Not bad for a freshman playing his second college game. Taylor certainly appears as though he’ll cut into the carries of Bradrick Shaw when he returns from injury.
Wisconsin 24, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q3, 10:02): Badgers running back Jonathan Taylor loses a fumble while battling for extra yardage. Wisconsin keeps finding ways to allow FAU back into the game. Let’s see if the Owls can take advantage.
Wisconsin 24, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q3, 10:23): Another Badgers injury to report. Wisconsin safety Patrick Johnson is out for the game with a left arm injury. Johnson is the backup free safety to Natrell Jamerson and a key contributor in the secondary.
Wisconsin 24, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q3, 11:58): Wisconsin announces that left guard Beau Benzschawel is out for the game with a right leg injury. Both teams have traded punts early in the third quarter, and the Owls have the ball at their own 35. They have a chance to really make this game interesting.
Wisconsin 24, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q2, 0:02): Badgers kicker Rafael Gaglianone buries a 20-yard field goal just before halftime. Offensively, Wisconsin was pretty darn good in the first half and gained 358 yards. But a blown coverage on defense and an interception from quarterback Alex Hornibrook has allowed Florida Atlantic to hang around in the game. We’ll see if the Badgers can put away the Owls early in the second half, as they did against Utah State last week.
Wisconsin 21, Florida Atlantic 14 (Q2, 4:29): Well, this is quite a surprise. FAU running back Devin Singletary scores a 1-yard touchdown to bring the Owls within seven points. Florida Atlantic took advantage of an interception from Badgers QB Alex Hornibrook. The Owls entered the day listed as 31 1/2-point underdogs. This game is much closer than anybody anticipated.
Wisconsin 21, Florida Atlantic 7 (Q2, 6:22): Wisconsin officials provide an update on right guard Beau Benzschawel and say he is questionable with a right leg injury. Benzschawel was a second-team All-Big Ten selection last season, so his absence would be substantial for the Badgers’ offensive line moving forward. Micah Kapoi is in the game in his place at right guard.
#Badgers injury update: OL Beau Benzschawel (right leg) questionable to return
— Wisconsin Football (@BadgerFootball) September 9, 2017
Wisconsin 21, Florida Atlantic 7 (Q2, 9:05): Wisconsin QB Alex Hornibrook connects with tight end Troy Fumagalli for a 12-yard touchdown. Fumagalli now has 8 catches for 139 yards with 2 touchdowns this season. He entered his senior season with only 3 career touchdowns but is primed for a huge year. Fumagalli has said he believes he is the best tight end in the country, and he is proving it early this season.
Wisconsin 14, Florida Atlantic 7 (Q2, 12:11): Jonathan Taylor showed he isn’t superhuman, after all. Wisconsin handed the ball off to Taylor on four consecutive plays inside the FAU 6-yard line but couldn’t come up with the score. The Badgers needed just one yard on each of its last two plays. That’s a big momentum booster for the Owls.
Wisconsin 14, Florida Atlantic 7 (Q1, 3:09): Wisconsin had a huge coverage breakdown, which allowed FAU quarterback Daniel Parr to connect with receiver DeAndre McNeal for a 63-yard touchdown pass. McNeal was wide open behind Badgers defensive backs Nick Nelson and Natrell Jamerson. I’m sure Wisconsin’s coaching staff will spend quite a bit of time evaluating that play on tape.
Wisconsin 14, Florida Atlantic 0 (Q1, 6:40): It’s the Jonathan Taylor show at Camp Randall Stadium, and what a spectacular performance it’s been thus far. Taylor just broke off a 29-yard touchdown run in which three tacklers appeared to have him stopped for no gain. He ran around — and through — the left edge for the end zone anyway. Taylor has 6 carries for 119 yards with 2 touchdowns. And he may never give up the starting running back spot at this rate.
Wisconsin 7, Florida Atlantic 0 (Q1, 10:00): It’s clear early in his career that Jonathan Taylor is going to be an absolute star at Wisconsin. Taylor ran through a hole in the middle for a 64-yard touchdown to put the Badgers on the scoreboard. He has 4 carries for 87 yards, which matches his output from the season opener.
Wisconsin 0, Florida Atlantic 0 (Q1, 12:21): Tailback Jonathan Taylor earned his first career start in Bradrick Shaw’s absence and carried 3 times for 23 yards on the opening drive. Wisconsin’s drive didn’t result in points, but Taylor should be a major factor in the game today.
10:36 a.m.: Running backs Jonathan Taylor and Chris James were announced as starters on the big screen before kickoff. Bradrick Shaw is not in pads, so expect him to miss the game. This is a big opportunity for Taylor and James to earn a ton of carries.
10:25 a.m.: If you missed my pregame Facebook Live video, take a look below. I talk about my keys to the game, update the status of running back Bradrick Shaw and offer a score prediction.
10:02 a.m.: Still no sighting of Badgers running back Bradrick Shaw on the field for warm-ups. Shaw was listed as questionable for the game this week with a right leg injury. If there’s any question about his health, it make sense not to use him much today, if at all. Wisconsin should be just fine with tailbacks Jonathan Taylor, Chris James and Rachid Ibrahim.
8:40 a.m.: As I was walking into the stadium, I saw several recruits outside. Among them were two in-state commits from the 2018 class: linebacker C.J. Goetz (Waukesha, Wis.) and linebacker Mason Platter (Menomonie, Wis.). Every home game is a great opportunity to showcase the program to uncommitted players, particularly those out of state with the weather this nice.
8:35 a.m.: Check out our Facebook Live video of Wisconsin’s football team entering Camp Randall Stadium through the Memorial Arch before its game against Florida Atlantic.
Florida Atlantic at Wisconsin game time, details
Time: 11 a.m. CT
Date: Saturday, Sept. 9
Location: Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis.
Weather: Sunny skies with high near 70 degrees.
The line: Wisconsin is a 31 1/2-point favorite.
Over/under: 58 points
Which TV channel is showing Wisconsin-Florida Atlantic?
The game will be televised on BTN.
How can I watch Wisconsin-Florida Atlantic online?
The game can be viewed online at BTN2Go.com or on the BTN2Go mobile app.
How can I listen to Wisconsin-Florida Atlantic on the radio?
Wisconsin fans can listen to the game on the Badger Sports Network. In Madison, the network is WIBA 1310 AM and 101.5FM. The game can be heard on Sirius Satellite Radio channel 135 and XM Satellite radio channel 195. Fans can listen online at BadgerSportsNetwork.com or from the iHeartRadio mobile app (search WIBA). For Wisconsin fans, the full list of radio affiliates can be found here. For Florida Atlantic fans, the full list of radio affiliates can be found here.
Who is calling the game for BTN?
Kevin Kugler (play-by-play), Matt Millen (analyst), Lisa Byington (sideline reporter)
Florida Atlantic at Wisconsin preview
Wisconsin will attempt to take Florida Atlantic out of the game early and prevent the Owls from having any dreams of pulling off a monumental upset. The Badgers have won 38 consecutive nonconference home games, which is the sixth-longest FBS streak since 1946.
Florida Atlantic faced a Navy team in the season opener that ran the triple-option offense, so it’s difficult to discern how poor the Owls’ run defense really is. Navy ran the ball on 68 of its 78 offensive plays. But on those carries, the Midshipmen completely dominated. Navy’s 68 carries resulted in 416 yards — a 6.1-yards-per-carry average — and 5 touchdowns. Navy tailback Zach Abey rushed fro 235 yards and 2 touchdowns alone.
Wisconsin won’t run the ball as often as Navy, but the Badgers do have the talent and depth to punish the Owls. Freshman Jonathan Taylor was excellent in his debut against Utah State, carrying 9 times for 87 yards with 1 touchdown. Bradrick Shaw added 18 carries for 84 yards with 1 touchdown. Chris James, who carried 5 times for 15 yards, will also be an important backfield component.
Badgers quarterback Alex Hornibrook is coming off one of his strongest performances. He completed 15 of 23 passes against Utah State and tallied career highs of 244 passing yards and 3 touchdowns. Wisconsin’s defense was opportunistic as well, recording 4 turnovers against the Aggies. Wisconsin ranked fourth among Power 5 teams last season with 28 total takeaways.
Kiffin, in his first season at FAU, is trying to resuscitate a program that finished 3-9 in each of the last three seasons and hasn’t produced a winning record and bowl appearance since 2008.