Although Stanford might have just made it into the Top 25, Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez said the Cardinal will be a worthy Rose Bowl opponent.
While the No. 4 Badgers took time off for the Thanksgiving holiday, Stanford was busy beating Notre Dame 40-37 Saturday in its first non-conference win this season.
"I'm impressed with what I see," Alvarez said of No. 22 Stanford. "They remind me of a team much like ours where it's obvious they have a tremendous chemistry on that team," he said. "They've got a lot of momentum going right now."
Stanford began the season by losing its opener at Texas by 52 points, but the Cardinal closed its Pac-10 conference season 7-1, making possible their first trip to Pasadena on New Year's Day in 28 years.
"They started slow, they found that they can win, they know how to win. They play very confident and they get the job done," Alvarez said.
If Wisconsin wins the Rose Bowl game, as many predict, it will be the only Big Ten team in history to win consecutive Rose Bowl games.
But Alvarez said it's always too early to start counting on a win.
"If you're an underdog and people are telling you how poor you are and how you're going to be beaten in the game, that's motivation. So it tends to make those people focus a little more," he said.
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