I’m headed back to my Alma Mater in a few minutes, to root against my home state’s squad of rodents.
Has anyone ever seen what a Badger can do to a Gopher hole?
The Badgers have played the Golden Gophers every year except one dating back to 1890, which makes the rivalry the most-played in Division 1 football.
Saturday’s game will be the 117th 118th of the series. The teams skipped the annual game only in 1906, when President Theodore Roosevelt suspended college football rivalries out of safety concerns.
“There’s a lot of history and we’ll educate our players during the course of the week,” Bielema told reporters at his weekly news conference on Monday.
The teams started playing for the “Slab of Bacon” in 1930. But the traveling trophy made of black walnut vanished during a game in the 1940s.
Nearly 50 years later, an athletics department intern discovered it while cleaning out a storage room in Camp Randall. Although it had been “lost,” somebody had written the scores of every game on the trophy through 1970.
With the slab missing, the two teams started playing for Paul Bunyan’s Axe in 1948. The winner gets to keep the axe on campus until the next game. Wisconsin has had it since 2004.