October 1, 2014

Badgers earn 5-seed, draw Mississippi

The Wisconsin Badgers finished 1-win shy of winning the Big Ten Tournament title

Bo Ryan

Bo Ryan

on Sunday, falling to the Ohio State Buckeyes 50-43.  The loss in the title game came after the Badgers earned wins over Michigan and Indiana to get to the Sunday matchup.

Wisconsin should be battle tested for the upcoming NCAA Tournament.  They’ve earned wins in the regular season and Big Ten tournament over Indiana (2), Michigan (2) and Ohio State (1).

Now they get a date with Mississippi on Friday morning (11:40am) in Kansas City.  Just how good is Mississippi?  They beat Florida in the SEC title game 66-63 on Sunday, coming from 14 down in the second half to do so.  The Rebels are in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2002.

The Badgers, just like the rest of the Big Ten, has been beating up on each other since January.  Wisconsin’s offense has been a little hit and miss at times, but coach Bo Ryan is happy with the defense heading into the postseason.

AUDIO: Bo Ryan is pleased with his team’s defense :14

The Badgers will certainly need to play well, but to their advantage, they won’t have to face any one of the other 6-Big Ten teams until the Elite 8.  The Badgers and Ohio State Buckeyes could be on crash course for another meeting.  But first things first.  The Badgers have to win the first to get to the second and so on.

Wisconsin will have to hold down 6’2 junior guard Marshall Henderson, who averages 20-points a game and shoots 35.7% from three-point range.

The Badgers are a No. 5 seed after earning No. 4 seeds each of the last three seasons, which included a pair of runs to the Sweet 16 in 2011 and 2012.

Wisconsin is making its 15th consecutive trip to the Big Dance and the 12th time in Bo Ryan’s 12 seasons.  Wisconsin owns a 25-17 record all-time in the NCAA Tournament, including a 16-11 mark under Bo Ryan.