Wisconsin was able to outlast in-state rival Marquette 70-64 on Saturday at the packed Kohl Center because they have more firepower.
Although the No. 8 Badgers (10-0) and Golden Eagles (5-4) differ in the standings by a few games, they can both really defend and limit opportunities for their opponents to get good looks, but the stark contrast in the two comes in Wisconsin’s offensive firepower.
This isn’t the Bo Ryan basketball of methodical pace and layups.
This year’s Badgers have a lineup full of shot-makers and with the emergence of Frank Kaminsky at center, the steady guard-play of veterans Traevon Jackson, Josh Gasser and Ben Brust and the overall play of sophomore forward Sam Dekker, this Wisconsin team can really put up points.
Dekker had 20 points, 10 rebounds and a memorable dunk down the lane against Marquette and his ability to score in any way possible makes Wisconsin particularly lethal. This Wisconsin group can not only defend, they can score with the best of them now.
Marquette struggled to generate consistent offense once again and although the score is close, Jamil Wilson got hot from the perimeter late and Juan Anderson and Devante Gardner also hit tough contested perimeter jumpers after the offense struggled much of the day.
Without Todd Mayo, who was sitting out due to a violation of team rules, the Golden Eagles had a hard time finding a go-to player that could create a shot and score or get to the line.
Buzz Williams and Marquette deserve credit for staying in the game, but they need someone to step in and become the leader on offense.