DENVER, Colo. - "You think back to when you were a kid, always saying I want to play in that game and it's actually happening."
Former Wisconsin Badgers running back Montee Ball is riding high, a mile high to be exact.
"This was my plan, since I was 8 years old, to play for the Broncos, and it happened. Landing on my favorite team growing up as a child and then ending up in the Super Bowl is a story that a lot of people can't say they've been a part of."
What a four year ride it's been for Ball, shattering records in Madison, three straight Rose Bowls, and now a Super Bowl in his first NFL season.
"They say count your blessings, because you're lucky to land here. I'm spoiled. I come in and we have a great season, a great great season, and that doesn't happen to a lot of players ever."
Montee is not the only one living the Super Bowl dream. Between the two teams, five former Badgers will be either playing or coaching in Sunday's big game. Ball the sole Wisconsin representative playing in Denver.
"After the game I'll make sure to talk to them but before the game, you gotta stay professional, and all that stuff."
Having shared the huddle with Russell Wilson and Peyton Manning, Montee knows all about super quarterbacks.
"Russell, he does a lot of things that kind of resemble Peyton. He steps in the room, you want to listen to what he has to say. And I can't say too much about what he's doing now with the Seahawks but I most definitely can tell you they're in the Super Bowl for a reason, because I'm sure he's led them in the right direction."
Ball just hopes that Wilson isn't blocking his path to getting the big win that eluded him at Wisconsin.
"My parents would always tell me, God, it's not in his plan right now for you to win the big one. They would say the same thing to me next year and the third year when we were in the Rose Bowl they said the same thing. This is the time."
And as all those Badgers chase their storybook ending of winning a Super Bowl, they do so with fond memories of where it all started.
"Madison is always in my heart. I've had the greatest memories of my life there, made great friends, and it's a place that I'll never forget."