Erdmann could make first start at center
Walk-on from Slinger ready to take over if Biadasz is out
MADISON – Michael Deiter understands as well as anyone the transition Wisconsin teammate Jason Erdmann was forced to make against Iowa.
After prepping for almost the entire week to fill in at guard if needed, Erdmann had to replace Tyler Biadasz at center for all but one series in the second half.
According to Deiter, the toughest challenge for Erdmann, who had worked at left guard in UW’s first nine games, was correctly identifying the defensive front and directing the linemen to make the correct combo blocks.
“You work all week at guard and that’s not something you need to think about,” said Deiter, who started a combined 16 games at center and 11 at left guard in his first two seasons before moving to left tackle. “You’re thinking about your guard techniques.
“And then going from guard to center in the middle of the game, you become the guy that directs the traffic and really gets everyone on the same page.”
Biadasz, a redshirt freshman from Amherst High School who has started all 10 games this season, suffered a left leg injury late in the first half against Iowa and played one series in the second half before coming out.
He is listed as questionable for the game Saturday against Michigan.
Erdmann, a walk-on from Slinger High School, is expected to make his first start if Biadasz isn’t cleared to play.
“For the little bit of reps he took at center ... I think he did a really good job,” Deiter said of Erdmann’s work against Iowa.
"I knew he would be able to block. I just didn’t know if he was going to be as clean as he was . ... He did a really good job of directing traffic.”
From the infirmary: Safety D’Cota Dixon (right leg) also is questionable for Saturday.
Dixon, third on the team in tackles with 46, did not play at Illinois. He played sparingly at Indiana and did not play against Iowa.
Linebacker Chris Orr, who suffered a left-hamstring injury at Indiana and did not play against Iowa, is out this week.
UW coach Paul Chryst noted he doesn’t anticipate senior wide receivers Jazz Peavy or George Rushing will be ready to play anytime soon.
Rushing has been out all season with a left-leg injury. Peavy was slowed by a right-ankle injury and left the team for personal reasons.
Three yards and a cloud of dust?: Kyle Maynard, who became the first quadruple amputee to climb Mount Kilimanjaro without the aid of prosthetics, spoke to the UW players and coaches on Oct. 17.
Maynard’s inspirational talk, three days after UW improved to 6-0 with a 17-9 victory over Purdue, led the players to adopt a motto for the remainder of the season.
“Our motto is 3 feet at a time,” Erdmann said.
“Just keep chipping away at it. We ignore the outside noise and focus on ourselves.
“He said when he was climbing the mountains all he could do was look three feet in front of him.”
Extra points: UW’s regular-season finale on Nov. 25 at Minnesota will start at either 2:30 p.m. or 2:45 p.m. …
Tailback Jonathan Taylor, who rushed 29 times for 157 yards in the victory over Iowa, on Monday was named Big Ten freshman of the week for the sixth time.