Tag: Wisconsin

Wisconsin Badgers' Kaminsky and Ohio State Buckeyes' Thompson fight for a rebound during their NCAA game in Chicago, Illinois

Frank Kaminsky playing well for Wisconsin on Canadian trip


With Ryan Evans, Jared Berggren and Mike Bruesewitz — Wisconsin’s three top rebounders from last season — graduating, Bo Ryan is looking for some added production on the frontline besides rising sophomore Sam Dekker.

On Wisconsin’s trip to Canada, the Badgers may have an answer in 6-foot-11 rising junior Frank Kaminsky. As a sophomore, Kaminsky played around 10 minutes per game, averaging 4.2 points and 1.8 rebounds. However, he’s made a solid inside-out combo with Ben Brust in these Canadian exhibitions according to Jim Polzin of the Wisconsin State-Journal.

On Saturday night, in a 88-76 win over A-Game Hoops, Kaminsky had a team-high, tied with Brust, with 17 points. He is averaging 14.3 points per game on this trip, which is good for second on the team behind Dekker.

“Obviously, I’ve had a chance to step in and play some more minutes now that most of our frontcourt has graduated,” Kaminksy told Polzin in a phone interview. “It’s been nice to be able to step in and play more and get looks that maybe I would have gotten last year. I’m excited about what this year is going to bring.

“I feel like I’m building on what (coach Bo Ryan) is saying. After every game, he talks to us (and shows) teaching clips. I’m just really excited to work on it now when we have actual games so I can prepare for it when practice comes.”

Last week, Wisconsin got word that point guard Josh Gasser would be cleared to play in Canada after missing the 2012-2013 season. The addition of Gasser, and the rise in Kaminsky’s game — along with Dekker, Brust and Traevon Jackson — and the Badgers have a solid core on a team trying to build on a 23-12 (12-6 Big Ten) season, while also trying to make up for an early exit in the NCAA tournament.

“It’s a great learning experience for some of these younger guys when they’re going to press us in the Big Ten, because you learn to play with a lead,” Kaminsky added. “That’s what this trip is about is learning to do those type of things.”

No. 3 Indiana falls to No. 22 Wisconsin in Big Ten semifinals

Yogi Ferrell

No. 3 Indiana is solidly at the top of the list of elite teams in the country, but after its 68-56 loss to No. 22 Wisconsin Saturday afternoon in the Big Ten semifinals, is it still a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament? If they’re not, the Badgers’ 12 straight wins over Indiana will be a thorn in the Hoosiers’ side.

But the answer is likely “yes.” Perhaps we should focus on the bigger question, which is will the Hoosiers be the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament? Indiana is a perfect 18-0 against teams not in the RPI Top 50, an unblemished mark rivaled only at the top by Gonzaga. They also have the benefit of being ninth in strength of schedule.

We may have a better feel after Saturday night when a Big East tournament champion is crowned. If Louisville beats Syracuse, it could be in the conversation as well with just one loss against teams outside the RPI Top 50. The Cardinals would also be riding into Selection Sunday on a 10-game winning streak.

There are some concerns going forward for Indiana, though. Wisconsin is a team that is comfortable with grinding a team down to a halt, slowing the pace, and forcing offenses into half-court sets. Saturday, it didn’t look like Indiana was comfortable doing that. Cody Zeller was 4-of-10 from the floor for 13 points and added 11 rebounds, but there was still a good deal of room for improvement as far as getting him more involved.

Victor Oladipo shot an uncharacteristic 33 percent from the floor and turned the ball over four times, though he had four steals, seven rebounds, and three assists. Oladipo has proven to be the engine and not necessarily the complement to Indiana’s offense.

This NCAA tournament will likely come down to matchups. With so much parity between the middle of Division I and higher majors, Indiana will need to watch out for teams that can emulate the sorts of things that Wisconsin can do. They’ll need to be patient in the half-court, get Zeller, Oladipo, and Christian Watford involved, and find lineups that prevent big scoring runs by the opposition.

The Hoosiers are elite, that’s for sure, but are they elite enough to be the overall No. 1? We will know Sunday.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

Wisconsin escapes Penn State with win on Traevon Jackson’s buzzer beater (VIDEO)

Traevon Jackson
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Wisconsin will have to sit and wait while a possible four-way tie takes place atop the Big Ten, but it pulled some dramatics of its own Sunday. Penn State, which has played competitively of late under coach Pat Chambers, already has an upset win over Michigan under its belt. Wisconsin’s Traevon Jackson would not let it be two Top 25 wins for the Nittany Lions, though.

After Penn State forced a jump ball that left Wisconsin with 3.3 seconds to play and the ball under the opposite basket, it was inbounded to Jackson, who drove the length of the floor and got a three-pointer off in time from the wing and nailed it for the win. Watch below:

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_