The 2012 Rose Bowl is bound to go down as one of the most memorable in the 98 occurrences of the Granddaddy of them all. After three quarters of play in Pasadena, the No. 9 Wisconsin Badgers lead the No. 6 Oregon Ducks 38-35. At 73 points already, there have only been four Rose Bowls with more points scored, with the record of 80 points set in 1991 when Washington beat Iowa 46-34.
Through three quarters, Badgers tailback Montee Ball has ran all over Oregon for 165 yards on 29 carries through three quarters. The Rose Bowl record for rushing yards in a game is 247 yards by Charles White of the USC Trojans in the 1980 Rose Bowl against Michigan.
Oregon freshman extraordinaire De'Anthony Thomas opened the second half scoring with a 64-yard touchdown run, his second long TD run of the game, giving the Ducks a 35-28 lead early in the third quarter. But, as has been the case all game, when one team scores the other one responds almost immediately.
Wisconsin got a 60-yard kickoff return from Jared Abbrederis which set them up in great field position for a drive that ended in a field goal to cut Oregon's lead to 35-31. Then, after Oregon punted for just the second time all game, Wisconsin answered with a nine-play, 73-yard drive that culminated in an 18-yard touchdown strike from Russell Wilson to Nick Toon in the front corner of the end zone for a 38-35 lead.
Oregon Darron Thomas has completed 12 of 16 passes for 190 yards on the day, but one of those incompletions was his seventh interception of the season, with about three minutes to go in the third quarter. Oregon left guard Carson York injured himself during the interception return and was carted off the field.
On the subsequent possession, Wilson threw his fourth interception of the season for the Badgers, giving Oregon the ball with a chance for the go-ahead score.