1962 Wisconsin Badgers football team
|1962 Wisconsin Badgers football|
Big Ten champion
|Conference||Big Ten Conference|
|1962 record||8-2 (6-1 Big Ten)|
|Head coach||Milt Bruhn (7th season)|
|MVP||Ron Vander Kelen|
|Home stadium||Camp Randall Stadium|
|1962 Big Ten football standings|
|No. 2 Wisconsin $||6||–||1||–||0||8||–||2||–||0|
|No. 10 Minnesota||5||–||2||–||0||6||–||2||–||1|
The 1962 Wisconsin Badgers football team represented the University of Wisconsin in the 1962 Big Ten Conference football season. Wisconsin was the Big Ten Conference champion and ended the season with a #2 ranking in both the AP and UPI (now known as the Coaches' poll) polls, which remains the highest season-ending ranking in these polls in program history (since the inception of these polls in 1936 and 1958, respectively). Wisconsin played the #1 USC Trojans in the historic 1963 Rose Bowl, the first bowl game in college football history to pair the #1 and #2 teams in the nation. The 1962 team is also tightly linked to the resurgence of the program in the nineties through All-America end Pat Richter, who returned to the program as its athletic director in 1989 and is responsible for hiring Barry Alvarez.
Wisconsin opened the season by defeating New Mexico State and Indiana. On October 13, they defeated Notre Dame 17–8, which would propel them to a number 10 ranking. The Badgers then defeated the Iowa 42–15, which left them ranked number 5 in the nation. A 14–7 loss to Ohio State the following week dropped Wisconsin out of the polls (dropping out of the top 10, not the top 25 as the polls are currently structured).
On November 3, the Badgers defeated Michigan on the road, 34-12. This set up the November 10th homecoming game with the Badgers ranked #8 versus #1 Northwestern at Camp Randall Stadium. Wisconsin soundly defeated Northwestern, 37-6, resulting in a move up to #4 in the next poll. A win at Illinois set up a #3 Wisconsin vs #5 Minnesota battle for Paul Bunyan's Axe. Wisconsin won 14-9, securing the Big Ten Conference championship and the berth in the Rose Bowl, as well as a season-ending #2 ranking.
The Badgers faced #1 USC in the historic 1963 Rose Bowl – the first bowl game in college football history where #1 faced #2. However, season ending rankings were already set: neither of the major polls (AP, UPI) published polls after the bowls until much later, so Wisconsin's 1962 season-ending rank would be #2 regardless of the Rose Bowl, or any other bowl, outcomes.
Quarterback Ron Vander Kelen seemingly "come from nowhere" to lead the Badgers to a conference championship. He had missed the 1960 season due to an injury and was declared academically ineligible for the 1961 season. Vander Kelen was named the Big Ten Conference MVP for 1962 in his only season of play (except for a minute and a half of late-game mop-up in 1959 versus Marquette).
Senior end Pat Richter was a unanimous consensus All-America selection and came in sixth in the Heisman Trophy voting for 1962. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1996. Despite his an accomplishments as a player, he may be better known to younger generations for hiring coach Barry Alvarez when he became the athletic director at Wisconsin decades later.
Schedule and results
|September 29||NMSU*||Camp Randall Stadium • Madison, WI||W 69-13||40,495|
|October 6||Indiana||Camp Randall Stadium • Madison, WI||W 30-6||41,354|
|October 13||Notre Dame*||Camp Randall Stadium • Madison, WI||W 17-8||61,098|
|October 20||Iowa||No. 10||Camp Randall Stadium • Madison, WI||W 42-14||60,297|
|October 27||at Ohio State||No. 5||Ohio Stadium • Columbus, OH||L 7-14||82,540|
|November 3||at Michigan||Michigan Stadium • Ann Arbor, MI||W 34-12||53,789|
|November 10||No. 1 Northwestern||No. 8||Camp Randall Stadium • Madison, WI||W 37-6||65,501|
|November 17||at Illinois||No. 4||Memorial Stadium • Champaign, IL||W 35-6||36,762|
|November 24||No. 5 Minnesota||No. 3||Camp Randall Stadium • Madison, WI (Paul Bunyan's Axe)||W 14-9||65,514|
|January 1||No. 1 USC*||No. 2||Rose Bowl Stadium • Pasadena, CA (1963 Rose Bowl)||L 37-42||98,698|
|*Non-conference game. Homecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll.|
Team players in the 1963 NFL Draft
|Pat Richter||End||1||7||Washington Redskins|
|Gary Kroner||Back||7||93||Green Bay Packers|
Team players in the 1963 AFL Draft
- "Year-by-year Final Coaches' Polls". American Football Coaches Association. Archived from the original on January 2, 2011. Retrieved January 14, 2010.
- "Poll Archive". Associated Press. Archived from the original on May 25, 2010. Retrieved January 14, 2010.
- John Underwoord (September 9, 2010). "Vander Kelen". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved July 4, 2011.