Four things the football teams from Iowa and Wisconsin can do to position themselves for success in Saturday's 2:30 p.m. game at Camp Randall Stadium:
Wisconsin (9-0, 6-0)
1. Play to the strengths
That means running the football effectively and that begins up front for Wisconsin.
The Badgers aren't just big on the offensive line, they're huge, lining up at 6-6, 6-6, 6-3, 6-6 and 6-7 and tipping the scales at 328, 336, 316, 317 and 315 pounds.
That beef has helped Wisconsin lead the Big Ten in rushing at 244.8 yards per game and has a lot to do with the production of Jonathan Taylor in the backfield.
The true freshman running back who like Iowa's Akrum Wadley is a New Jersey native enters the Iowa game averaging 152 yards per game. That's more than 50 yards better than the second-most productive running back in the league and the fourth-best total in the country.
Taylor leads the Big Ten with 12 rushing touchdowns this season.
2. Stay stingy
Reaching the end zone has been a challenging endeavor for Wisconsin opponents this season, in part because the Badgers simply haven't given up many yards on the ground.
Wisconsin has built its 9-0 record by allowing opponents to score a Big Ten-low 13.3 points per game and denying opponents points on 29.6 percent of their trips into the red zone. That's the most effective red zone defensive rate in the Big Ten.
Points aren't the only thing Wisconsin's defense has made it difficult for opponents to come by.
The Badgers aren't giving up many yards on the ground, either. Wisconsin is allowing 87.8 rushing yards per game. Only Michigan State surrenders fewer yards on the ground than the Badgers among Big Ten teams, allowing 87 per game.
3. Make game-changing plays
Wisconsin challenges opponents with its 3-4 look on defense, something Iowa has not seen this season, and it has created plenty of game-changing disruption.
The Badgers have kept opponents off schedule in a multitude of ways. Wisconsin is second in the Big Ten with 31 sacks and leads the conference with 14 interceptions.
Three Badgers rank among the top seven in the Big Ten in sacks, an effort led by the 6.5 recorded by outside linebacker Garret Dooley. His total ranks second in the conference. Alec James is fifth at 5.5 and Andrew Van Ginkel is tied for seventh with five sacks on the year.
On the back, safety Joe Ferguson leads Wisconsin with four picks. The work of the grandson of long-time Badgers coach Barry Alvarez has been complemented by T.J. Edwards, who has three interceptions.
4. Take control early
Wisconsin hasn't trailed in the second half of a game this season.
Alex Hornibrook's effective management of the Badgers' offense has positioned Wisconsin to clinch no worse than a share of the title in the Big Ten West if it can beat Iowa.
The sophomore has completed 64.4 percent of his passes this season -- up from the 58.6-percent completion rate which mirrors the work of Iowa's Nate Stanley as a first-year starter.
Hornibrook's top receiver, Quintez Cephus, is expected to miss the Iowa game with a leg injury, and a fast start provided either by an effective rushing attack or the work of senior Troy Fumagalli, the Big Ten's top receiving tight end with 30 catches, could prove invaluable.
Iowa (6-3, 3-3)
1. Establish the run
The yards won't be as easy to come by this week as they were a week ago when Iowa piled up a season-high 243 rushing yards against Ohio State.
Wisconsin's 3-4 defense will test the Hawkeyes and has traditionally created some issues. But, Iowa needs to gain some traction on the ground if it hopes to be in a position to knock of the sixth-ranked Badgers and earn its second win in as many weeks over a top-10 opponent.
Akrum Wadley enters the game averaging 4.2 yards per carry and return of a healthy James Butler as a more power-based complement to Wadley gives the Hawkeyes a chance to make that happen. Butler averages 4.6 yards per carry.
If Iowa can work its way - and it will take work - to around 150 yards on the ground as team, the Hawkeyes will give themselves a chance.
2. Keep 'em guessing
The stat sheet doesn't lie.
Iowa found the offensive balance to befuddle Ohio State last week, rushing for 243 yards and passing 244.
That blend started on first down, where early success in the pass game opened things up for the Hawkeyes' rushing attack to take control as the clock continued to run at Kinnick Stadium.
Iowa threw the ball 11 times among the 19 first-down snaps it had during the first half of its game against the Buckeyes. Nate Stanley completed passes on seven of those attempts, creating balance for Iowa and confusion for Ohio State.
That same type of blend - and the same level of execution - will be important.
3. Be the spoiler, again
After ending Ohio State's College Football Playoff hopes, Iowa has a chance to play the role of the spoiler against Wisconsin.
A win by the Hawkeyes would in all likelihood end the Badgers' postseason playoff possibilities as well.
Wisconsin has plenty of ongoing streaks, including an overall 10-game win streak dating to a Cotton Bowl win over Western Michigan that matches Georgia as the second-longest win streak in college football. Only Miami (Fla.), with 13 straight wins, is on a longer run of success.
The road team has enjoyed good success recently in a series that has been dominated by defense the past two years.
Iowa won at Camp Randall 10-6 two years ago and Wisconsin won 17-9 at Kinnick Stadium last season, extending a string of road wins between the teams to six straight games.
4. Do something special
Last week it was the polecat.
Who knows what Iowa's special teams might have in store for the Badgers?
The Hawkeyes have helped themselves with some well-timed trickery this season on special teams, and they've also helped themselves with some well-timed execution.
The leg of Miguel Recinos and his ability to deliver in what is expected to be less-than-ideal weather conditions - there is rain, snow, sleet and a blend of it all in the forecast - could loom large against the Badgers.
Recinos' work on kickoffs has been effective. He's averaging 63.2 yards and has recorded 24 touchbacks on 50 kicks this season while allowing returns of 16.5 yards.
The Hawkeyes' junior has been consistent this season, matching the work of Wisconsin kicker Rafael Gaglianone with a 9-of-11 start to the season in field goal attempts.
Gaglanone is from Brazil and played his high school football in not-so-chilly Chattanooga, Tennessee. Recinos grew up in Mason City. Given the possible conditions, advantage Iowa.