Really, that's what 2009 is shaping up as. As much as NIU, Fresno State, Wofford, and the Rainbow Warriors would have us believe otherwise, we should be 4-0 in those games. Look at the second half of our conference slate: Purdue, Indiana, the once mighty Michigan (at home), and Northwestern. Yeah, Northwestern isn't a given, but those other three? Even in our present devalued state, we're favorites (maybe big favorites) in those games.
As much as the commentor crazies at various places (JSOnline, BadgerBeat, Badger message boards, etc.) want everyone to believe that the Bielema Badgers are the second coming of Morton's Badgers, it's hard to believe they will be. You have to have an awfully negative view of things to believe a team returning this many guys on offense will be that bad.
What that means is the difference between a mediocre season with a decent bowl (7-8 wins) and a solid or even great season comes from those four weeks starting September 26 through October 17. MSU, @ Minnesota, @ Ohio State, Iowa. Last year wasn't all that different, with Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Iowa all in a row. We went 0-4, and went on to a mediocre bowl with awful results.
This year? Another 4-week season.
I, for one, can't wait for the pre-season.