Shortly after the Badgers completed an impressive road win over Illinois on Sunday, they likely watched and waited for the Michigan State/Michigan game to end. After MSU won, Wisconsin earned themselves the four seed and packed up to return to Madison.
And that’s just how Bo Ryan and Badger fans like it; go about your business and keep playing hard.
The Badgers will face Illinois on Friday afternoon, a rubber match for two opponents who played well against each other this season. However, UW clearly has the upper hand going into the Big Ten tournament, as they continue to ride the hot hands of Jason Bohannon and Jon Leuer, as well as the steady guard play of Trevon Hughes and Jordan Taylor.
If all goes accordingly, the Badgers will most likely face Ohio State in the semifinals. In my opinion, this would be the best game of the tournament, if not the whole month of March. In their first meeting, Evan Turner was injured, and the Badgers rolled to an easy victory. When Turner returned later in the season, OSU toppled Bucky.
So if there’s any pattern here, it’s that the Badgers have many scores to settle throughout the Big Ten tourney.
The gameplan against Illinois is pretty simple: out rebound them, let Jason Bohannon get the hot hand, and have Trevon Hughes pilot the whole operation. Throw in a healthy dose of Jon Leuer, along with solid play off the bench, and the Badgers should have no problem advancing.
Assuming Ohio State advances through the winner of the Michigan/Iowa game (and they will), the Badgers would play in their second consecutive rubber match of the tournament.
It never comes easy in the Big Ten, but you’d never guess that’d be the case with the way Bo has his guys playing, not just this March, but every March.
Peeps’ ”Article of the Week”
I came across this article today and the first thing I thought of was “NBA Live 94″ for Sega Genesis. Remember the days where some players didn’t have their names used in popular video games? (I’m looking at you, MJ). Well now, Ed O’Bannon is suing the NCAA for using player’s likenesses in everything from video games, DVD’s, apparel, and magazines.
You’ll have to read the article to get the jist of everything (Frank Deford is a great writer, so its worth it). But it looks like the NCAA might actually be at fault in this regard, something that you don’t hear often.
Cheers and happy reading!
Brian Peoplis is a regular contributor at Bleacher Report. He is also an analyst over at www.wiscosportstalk.com.
Follow him on Twitter @PEEPSMKE