PennStateHoops.com Discussion Forum

IGT: vs Wisconsin 2020, 2:15 Saturday, Jan. 11 (BTN)

Wisconsin transfer Micah Potter has been eligible for a couple weeks, and seems to be growing more comfortable on the floor.

Badgers totally happy to take long twos at any time in the shot clock. Probably because they make a lot of them.

Pesky, helping defense. Solid, block-out defensive rebounding.

Gonna be a challenge.

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Wisconsin has found their stride. They are what you’d expect them to be. Incredibly annoying personalities, not particularly athletic, Davidson flopping like a fish. Trice takes a million elbow jumpers off the high ball screen and hit a lot of them.

Potter has given them some added offense inside, I dont think he’s a great defender. But he can hit a few and has had a good night so far vs. Cockburn.

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Hoping Illinois had deflated their hopes. They ahd a similar losing streak to the Badgers as we have right now.

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For all of you on this board and especially for those of you who will be in attendance for this game on Saturday, I urge each and everyone to watch this week’s The Journey on BTN.

Incredibly moving story on former Wisconsin player and current Badger assistant coach Howard Moore. Those “Do Moore, Be Moore, 4 Moore” shirts have quite a story behind them.

If anyone from the Legion Of Blue can come up with a proper way to honor the Badger family and Coach Moore, I’d encourage you to do so.

We as fans like to see all the good in our team, while trying to point fingers and bring out the bad in the other team or school (See Rutgers “F Penn State” chant or even our own “overrated” chant toward the Terrapins).

But it is a show like The Journey that helps bring light to how human these kids and coaches are, who come into our building with the same hopes, dreams and even hurts that our own players and coaches have and deal with on a daily basis.

Howard Moore’s story will undoubtedly move each and every one of you to think better of your actions come Saturday and beyond.

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Wisconsin’s recent success was a total mirage, catching wounded teams and being generally just lucky. They are a bottom-half Big Ten team - albeit a strong conference this year. I have long been low man on them of all the publicly available systems, I had them 48th before Illinois nipped them last night. It’s actually comical that they’ve been considered a Top 25 type team by some.

The spread will probably be closer to PSU -3 or -4 - mostly because the many of the systems out there are flawed… we really deserve to be ~7 point home favorite over this Badger team this weekend. Wisconsin are not a scary team.

Pat fell into the Curtis Jones trap door because of one flukey performance and it cost us dearly vs Rutgers. He has no absolutely NO BUSINESS playing more minutes than Jamari Wheeler who jump starts our transition offense. Jamari needs to play 30 and run a few sets for him to get to the rim. He is the one guy on our team that can absolutely wreck opposing guards in their half court sets.

If we bring our A-game we run them out of the gym.

Yin

Yang

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To be fair, Curtis has won us 2 games Iowa and Bama. But yeah, his production outside those games could be improved. But the reason Wheels didn’t play much in the Rutgers game was cause of foul trouble, nothing more.

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Oh Lord, it’s hard to be humble
When you’re perfect in every way
I can’t wait to look in the mirror
‘Cause I get better lookin’ each day
To know me is to love me
I must be a hell of a man
Oh Lord, it’s hard to be humble
But I’m doin’ the best that I can!

He fell into a trap door? We lost the game against Rutgers because we couldn’t make any shots, I’m not sure how Jamari Wheeler is necessarily the anecdote for that. It also didn’t help that he picked up two fouls in the opening few minutes.

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Here’s the guy that doesn’t like Curtis Jones!

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His performance as a whole so far has proven me very right. I want what is best for the team so I would love nothing more than for him to start proving me wrong.

wat

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Last year the Badgers came to PSU after consecutive losses to Western Kentucky and at home to Minnesota. They looked ripe for the taking and smoked us 71-52.

Here’s hoping history does not repeat itself and PSU proves they are different this year.

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And, Wheels is very fortunate that his flagrant foul was deemed a “1” and not a “2.” As much a Penn State homer as I am, that could easily have been ruled a “2.” I love Wheels’ defensive intensity, but our current challenge (and I’ve said this in other threads) is unless/until Myles snaps out of his lengthy shooting funk, we’ve got 2/5ths of our starters who generate no scoring punch. That puts inordinate pressure on the other three guys and also makes Penn State much easier to defend. Pat has no choice but to sub in Curtis and IB in the hopes of generating some balance on the offensive side. Fortunately, those two guys are both decent defenders in their own right so not giving up too much there.

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This game becomes key for us. Given the depth of the B1G this year, if you want to make the tourney, you can’t allow one loss to give way to a second, third, etc. Need to stop the bleeding and regain the winning mindset. I believe strongly we are a much better team than we showed against Rutgers on Tuesday. We didn’t have it either physically or mentally after half time. This time around, Wisky will be the team coming in with two days’ rest and trying to bounce back physically and emotionally. We need to get off to a strong start on Saturday and bury them early. Not an easy task by any means, but unlike prior years, we have the quality and depth of athletes to do it.

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I actually was surprised it wasn’t a 2, it def could have been. Lucky there for sure, one of the few calls on our side that night.

The Wisky game is super important for the rest of the season. Years past we’d drop this one for sure after what happened Tues night. So far we’ve rebounded from losses, hoping the same here. And I keep waiting for Dread to break out cause I know he can, and hope it’s in this game.

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Wisconsin leads the overall series 38-10. WE NEED THIS WIN. 12-game losing streaks just aren’t for any PSU team. It’s incredibly difficult to do imo in basketball. Yet Wisconsin managed to have a 15-game win steak against Illinois (was just snapped) and an ongoing 12-game win streak against us. We need to beat Wisconsin and put to bed this awful losing streak.

However, Wisconsin is not alone. Penn State has not defeated Purdue since the 2013-14 campaign. PSU has one credible win streak at the moment, a 6-game streak with Illinois.

Streaks in the Big Ten for PSU (best to worst)
PSU vs. Illinois W6
PSU vs. Maryland W2
PSU vs. Northwestern W2
PSU vs. Michigan W1
PSU vs. Iowa W1
PSU vs. Nebraska W1
PSU vs. Rutgers L1
PSU vs. Ohio State L2
PSU vs. Indiana L3
PSU vs. Michigan State L3
PSU vs. Minnesota L4
PSU vs. Purdue L9
PSU vs. Wisconsin L12

Wisconsin has ALMOST always been one of those teams that rates better by the metrics than they look with the eyeballs (with a few exceptions during the peak years of Bo Ryan’s time there where they really were just a finely tuned machine of basketball efficiency). This year might be the most egregious discrepancy however.

I’ve seen them play a bunch now and I can’t understand how they’ve climbed to 24th in the KenPom ratings, after being 60th just a month ago. I guess you could point to Potter entering the fray as the moment things really swung for them, but he hasn’t exactly been dominant - maybe just a chemistry thing they were missing without him.

That’s not to say I don’t buy them as a legit top 25 team, or that I think we should easily beat them. I just have a hard time figuring them out.

We know they’re going to try to suck us into playing a very slow, half-court game. And doing so favors them a great deal, not only because that’s their specialty but because it’s the opposite of the way we want to play.

If we can turn them over a bit and get a lead early, force them to play from behind and maybe throw the press on them to try to speed them up… I like our chances. But I’m expecting a game that gets settled in the final 2 minutes and I think they’re way more comfortable in that situation than we are. Hopefully we can find a way to avoid it being that close late. .

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Non-analytical, fandom statement warning

I think us coming out and ragdolling Wisconsin into submission will mean this season will be really special.

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I’m sure the Illini game didn’t help much there haha. Hope we’re catching them at the right time.

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