The arrival of QB transfer Danny O’Brien to the Wisconsin Badgers solidifies the speculation that the cardinal and white are in fact the favorites to win the Leader’s Division, and threepeat as Big Ten Champions. Penn State fans had already started to cheer about O’Brien picking the Nittany Lions over the other schools he was considering after seeing a picture of the QB sporting a Penn State windbreaker (when did wearing a school’s windbreaker become so meaningful?).
The Wisconsin Badgers confirmed the signing of the coveted quarterback on Tuesday. O’Brien graduated in three years from Maryland and still has two years of eligibility left. It did not take long before word spread on campus that the Badgers might actually have a chance to return to the Rose Bowl. Once again, Wisconsin’s football season has been saved by a transfer quarterback.
The quarterback situation in Wisconsin did not look promising as none of the frontrunners, Joe Brennan and Joel Stave, have any experience as starters. Although head coach Bret Bielema has made it clear that O’Brien will come into summer camp to compete for the starting position, we all know that as long as he has a semi-solid camp O’Brien will be the number one quarterback.
The comparisons of O’Brien and Wisconsin’s quick-fix for the 2011 season, Russell Wilson, have quickly arisen. Yes, they are both transfers from the ACC, but you cannot compare O’Brien to Wilson just yet. Russell Wilson fit in seamlessly with the pro-style offense that Paul Chryst ran. He came in and impressively learned the playbook in a short period of time, and not to mention quickly gained the respect in the locker room. O’Brien still has two years left of eligibility so he definitely has more time to adjust than Wilson did, but it will not be easy. With offensive coordinator Chryst gone, O’Brien will have to respond to NIU’s former OC Matt Canada’s orders.
Although only time will tell, the Wisconsin Badgers have high expectations for the 2012 season. Danny O’Brien is welcomed to Badger Nation with open arms but he is expected to deliver. With the dynamic-duo Montee Ball and James White in the backfield, putting points on the board should not be an issue for the Badgers. Badger fans should be excited for what’s coming in the next two years under the signal-calling of Danny O’Brien.
Danny O’Brien Highlights
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