BuckyCap: Wisconsin Gets Their Statement Win
Wisconsin Badgers needed to make a statement on Saturday. This statement is not just winning the game, rather, a statement about all of the things that are happening right now in Madison. Kobe King left the program. Brad Davison was suspended for the game against Michigan State for a nut punch. And some fans wanted to put Greg Gard on the hot seat (More on that later). Wisconsin won 64-63 in a final score that looked much closer than it was due to Michigan State hitting the last two shots. This is the biggest win of the year for Wisconsin, and right now, they should be off anyone’s bubble.
Player of the Game: Aleem Ford – With Davison and King gone, the Badgers needed someone to step up. That player became Aleem Ford. He scored 13 points with an offensive rating of 137. That is a great game from Ford. He played the most minutes this season against the Spartans. This is the second Big Ten game of the season where Ford scored more than double-digits, but that happened against Indiana in early December. Ford hadn’t scored more than 10 points since New Year’s Eve against Rider.
Honorable Mention: Nathan Reuvers – I thought about going with Tyler Wahl or Trevor Anderson, but here’s the thing, Wisconsin needed a star on Saturday afternoon. Reuvers played that role for Wisconsin. He scored 15 points going 5-for-9 from the field and made two threes. Reuvers got off to a strong start in this one. At the beginning of the year, we wondered who would be the man for Wisconsin this year, and that answer is Reuvers.
One thing to talk about: Greg Gard hears the boos – Some Badgers fans were upset that Greg Gard got booed at the start of the game. Media members were also unhappy. Everyone has the right to boo. The boos were not that loud, and fans are right to be frustrated a bit with Gard after what happened against Iowa. The future is very bright for Wisconsin with their two recruiting classes. But people don’t care about that especially in 2020 where everything is instant gratitude.
Next up: Wisconsin heads to Minnesota on Wednesday night. That will be a showdown between Wisconsin and Minnesota. It’s an obvious rivalry game, but the Golden Gophers need their statement win. Daniel Oturu versus Reuvers is worth the price of admission. Minnesota’s offense has been less than stellar with their offensive efficiency ranking 10th in KenPom.