Hello everyone at TOC, well after that nice bounce back victory vs Penn State, MSU finds themselves in an always tough game at Wisconsin. While the Kohl Center is usually a very formidable place to play the Badgers have lost their last three there for the first time in Bo’s tenure. While the Northwestern stats were a bit all over the place, their rotation has barely changed since the start of the season.
This Badger team plays the same 8 man rotation that started the season with the only difference being that Hayes has found his scoring game during the conference season, while Kaminsky has slowed down. They play a four guard and four forward rotation. They play a similar game to Michigan in they try to slow the game down to a crawl and beat you with their offensive efficiency. They are a pretty good three point shooting team although they have been colder in the recent B1G play. They do not foul, block shots, or turn the ball over. They are also mediocre on the boards. Payne and out outside shooting will be key in this matchup.
Starting with the Frontcourt, Kaminsky, Junior, leads the team in eFG%, O rating, both rebounding percentages, and blocks. He is third on the team in shot attempts and while he takes most of his shots from inside the arc, he does shoot 41% from three point land. While he does lead the team in rebound percentage, he does not have great rebounding numbers overall. His shooting numbers have also slowed in conference play to having an eFG% of 53.4 and are only shooting 37% from 3. The other starter is Dekker, Sophomore, who leads the team in points per 30. He also leads the team in field goal attempts and is second on the team in three point attempts even though he is only shooting around 31% from three which is easily the worst percentage in the starting 5.
The Backcourt is led by Brust who is the best shooter in this backcourt. He is also a very good rebounding guard and is very dangerous from the three point line. He has taken the most shot attempts on the team and around 62% of them come from 3 where he hits around 40%. He also plays the most minutes on the team and has a pretty amazing fouls per 30 minutes number. Next is Gasser, Junior, who even though he plays the second highest number of minutes does not look to score anywhere near as much as the other starters. He does not play a big role in the Badger offense and is really pretty average in everything. The final starter is Jackson, Junior, who is the sole person with high assist numbers on the team. Other than that though he is not an efficient shooter and has the highest turnover numbers on the team.
The reserves consist of 2 forwards and 1 guard. The first person off the bench is usually Hayes, Freshman, who has really played better in the conference season. He is a banger in the post and unlike the rest of his team does not possess an outside game. He like the rest of the team is only a mediocre rebounder, but unlike the rest of his team does not have good foul numbers, and only has a 57% free throw percentage. The next off the bench is Koenig, Freshman, who does not look to score, and has the worst rebounding numbers on the team. Other than that all his numbers are pretty average. Finally Dukan, Junior, is the second reserve forward. He is only the fourth or fifth option on offense depending on the lineup around him. He is also pretty average compared to the rest of his team.
All in all Wisconsin always plays MSU tough although we have gotten the upper hand lately. This should be a pretty back and forth game coming down to a few possessions at the end of the game. Wisconsin has not played very well recently losing 5 of their last 7. In these games their interior D has failed them, where they are giving up a ton of penetration and points to opposing guards which bodes well for Gary, but would really be a boon if Keith can play. I think Payne coming back really opens up our offense and while the game is close for the first 35 minutes or so a late offensive push puts us over the top. Go Green!
Ps. Wish me luck. I have Jury Duty on Monday.