Report: Danny O'Brien to leave Wisconsin

According to a report, quarterback Danny O’Brien is leaving the Wisconsin program. No shock.

The Badgers quarterback situation is loaded. Sophomore Joel Stave, sixth-year senior Curt Phillips, redshirt freshman Bart Houston and JC transfer Tanner McEvoy are in the mix. The chance of O’Brien winning the post—or even netting any serious playing—seemed remote after a disappointing debut in Madison in 2012.

O’Brien arrived in Madison amid a lot of hype prior to last season after transferring from Maryland. It was a similar path to Russell Wilson, who also had transferred from an ACC school (N.C. State) amid great fanfare—and thrived.

O’Brien won the starting job but gave way to Stave in a narrow win over Utah State in the third game of the year. O’Brien faded from relevance from there on out and was buried on the depth chart. Even after Stave was hurt vs. Michigan State late in the season, coaches opted to start Phillips instead of O’Brien the rest of the season.

The senior-to-be hit only 60.5 percent of his passes for 523 yards and three touchdowns in 2012.

View O’Brien’s 2012 Wisconsin game log:

Passing Rushing
Date Opp Cmp Att Yds Pct TDs Int Long Car Yds Avg TDs Long
9/1/2012 NoIa 19 23 219 82.6 2 0 53 4 3 0.8 0 7
9/8/2012 @ OreSt 20 38 172 52.6 1 1 26 4 -35 -8.8 0 0
9/15/2012 UtahSt 5 10 63 50.0 0 0 19 2 -11 -5.5 0 0
9/29/2012 @ Neb 3 4 25 75.0 0 0 10 1 -3 -3.0 0 0
10/27/2012 MSU 5 11 44 45.5 0 0 11 3 -32 -10.7 0 0
11/10/2012 @ Ind 0 0 0 - 0 0 - 1 -4 -4.0 0 0


About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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