Camp Randall had barely emptied after the Badgers clinched the Big Ten championship last Saturday when greedy fans began wondering how the team might elbow its way to the front of the college football lineup.
The spate of messages, tweets and emails proposed what-if scenarios that might land the Badgers in the Bowl Championship Series title game on Jan. 10, instead of the team's likely destination: the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day.
For this to happen, top-ranked Oregon would have to lose Saturday to Oregon State and number-two Auburn would have to get beat by South Carolina. And then voters in USA Today's panel of coaches and Harris Interactive's group of former players and media members would have to pick Wisconsin as one of the two best teams among undefeated TCU and one-loss teams Oregon, Auburn and Stanford.
Unlike Auburn, which has emerged from a stacked Southeastern Conference, Wisconsin has beaten only one top-10 team - Ohio State. That's reflected in the Badgers' average rank of seventh among the computer polls sampled by the BCS. But if Wisconsin's 48-point scoring average over the last seven games is as impressive to voters as it's been to the TV pundits, college football writers and bloggers, the Badgers have a good shot.
Bret Bielema caught some heat for scoring 83 points against Indiana a few weeks ago, but it got people's attention, and the Badgers' subsequent drubbings of Michigan (48-28) and Northwestern (70-23) kept it. If Wisconsin manages to squeeze into the BCS title game, it's likely due to those gaudy scores.