Wisconsin Men's Basketball 2014 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Wisconsin Badgers
Big Ten (26-7, 12-6)


Once again, Bo Ryan’s team has had a strong year in the Big Ten.  They seem to be in position every season to challenge for the Big Ten title.  This season has been no different.  As usual they play as strong a defense as anybody in the country.  They held Virginia, one of the ACC’s best, to 35 points for the entire game back in December.  With the style they play, the Badgers are in very good position to make another Sweet Sixteen and have an outside shot to make a run at the Final Four.  The Badgers will need to score more points, but this is another one of Ryan’s steady teams.

Big Wins: 11/12 Florida (59, 53), 12/4 at Virginia (48-38), 2/16 at Michigan (78-70)
Bad Losses: 1/14 at Indiana (72-75), 1/22 at Minnesota (68-81), 1/29 Northwestern (56-65)
Coach: Bo Ryan (13 seasons at Wisconsin)

Why They Can Surprise:
Like every year, their defense will carry them.  They only allow 64 points per game, which puts any team in good position to win, including a team that is not proficient at scoring like Wisconsin.  The Badgers pace of play can irritate their opponent.  They set up every possession and slow the pace down whenever they have the ball.  If they can set up their offense, they have a great chance to come out victorious.  This is a smart team with playmakers like Sam Dekker and Frank Kaminsky.   Wisconsin is also one of the most disciplined teams in the country.  They hardly ever turn the ball over, and they do not foul often.  It is a rare thing to see them beat themselves.  They can go toe-to-toe with anyone for forty minutes.  If you are going to beat the Badgers, you have to win the game.  Rarely do they get in their own way.

Why They Can Disappoint:
Wisconsin lacks firepower offensively that would make them even more dangerous.  They score 73 points per game, which works for them over the course of the season since their defense keeps them in games.  There will be some point during this tournament when they will have to answer some buckets with big buckets of their own.  Going cold from the floor - as they have done a few times this season - is not an option.  The Badgers also have a difficult time on the glass.  They have gotten outrebounded in many of their wins this season.  They do not have a very deep bench and require a lot of production out of their starters.  Lack of depth could hurt them in a long game.  Wisconsin is just going to have to keep up.  Playing from behind is not their style.  Should they find themselves behind at any point in a game, they are going to have to speed things up and would like to avoid that if they can.

Probable Starters:
Traevon Jackson, Junior, Guard, 10.4 ppg, 3.9 apg
Josh Gasser, Junior, Guard, 9.2 ppg, 1.8 apg
Ben Brust, Senior, Guard, 12.9 ppg, 1.3 apg, 4.6 rpg
Sam Dekker, Sophomore, Forward, 12.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg
Frank Kaminsky, Junior, Forward, 13.6 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 1.7 bpg

Key Roleplayers:
Nigel Hayes, Freshman, Forward, 8.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg
Bronson Koenig, 3.2 ppg
Duje Dukan, 2.6 ppg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 73.2 (105th in nation, 4th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.2 (42, 4)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.5 (110, 4)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.1 (150, 11)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.7 (49, 3)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 37.1 (64, 3)
Free-Throw Percentage: 74.7 (23, 3)
Rebound Margin: 1.1 (156, 7)
Assists Per Game: 12.0 (229, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 8.2 (1, 1)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NCAA    Second Round loss to Mississippi
2012    NCAA    Second Round win over Montana
2012    NCAA    Third Round win over Vanderbilt
2012    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss t Syracuse
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Belmont
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Kansas State
2011    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss to Butler
2010    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Wofford
2010    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Cornell
2009    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Florida State
2009    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Xavier
2008    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Cal State Fullerton
2008    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Kansas State
2008    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss to Davidson
2007    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Texas A&M Corpus Christi
2007    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to UNLV

*all team stats through 3/9


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules