Tom Dienhart, BTN.com Senior Writer, August 14, 2015
For the second time in three years, Wisconsin was rocked by the unexpected departure of a football coach. Gary Andersen bolted for ? Oregon State? No problem, as Barry Alvarez rebounded nicely by hiring former Badger player and coach Paul Chryst, an offensive whiz.
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Chryst will run a more conventional offense than his predecessor, but it still will be built around run. The defense will remain a 3-4, as coordinator Dave Aranda was retained.
Here is what I?ll be looking for at Wisconsin camp.
1. O-line. Long a strength, the line is under scrutiny. The unit has been the backbone of the program for years, but depth is an issue. Left tackle Tyler Marz and center Dan Voltz are the only returning starters. So, if players don?t pan out-guards Ray Ball and Michael Deiter, tackle Hayden Biegel–or injuries set in-things could get interesting in Madison.
2. Corey Clement. He already has been anointed as the next ?great one? in Madison. Clement ran for 949 yards and nine touchdowns last year as the backup to Melvin Gordon, who gained 2,587 yards rushing in 2014 with 29 scores. Clement is not as explosive as Gordon, but he?s a bigger back who can carry the freight. How does he look?
3. Quarterbacks. Joel Stave is the man after losing the job out of camp and then battling the yips last year. That was bizarre. He?s a statuesque signal-caller whose drop-back style is suited to what Paul Chryst wants to do on offense. Still, Stave has to show he?s capable for an offense that has struggled to pass in recent years. In fact, UW ran for more yards than it passed for last year.
|About Tom Dienhart||BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at btn.com/tomdienhart, 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.|