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The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Teachers pet: Ryan tramples former assistant

[media-credit name=’BRYAN FAUST/Herald photo’ align=’alignright’ width=’336′]MBB_No42_BF[/media-credit]While Rob Jeter's game plan may have been a spitting image of his mentor Bo Ryan's, it was Ryan's that was better looking Tuesday as No. 7 Wisconsin (10-1, 0-0 Big Ten) cruised to a 68-49 victory over UW-Milwaukee (2-10, 0-1 Horizon).

Jeter, the current Panthers head coach and former Badger assistant coach under Ryan, could do little to motivate his inexperienced team, as Wisconsin quickly jumped out to a 9-0 lead to start the game.

"The two teams really mirrored themselves doing the same things," Jeter said. "There were just a few different bodies in uniforms."


The big difference was UW senior forward Alando Tucker, who scored a game-high 20 points.

Despite the Badgers' early lead, the Panthers clawed back to a three-point deficit at about the midway point of the first half. Tucker then took over, hitting turnaround jumper after turnaround jumper to spark an 11-0 Wisconsin run.

"Alando Tucker, in that key stretch, hit a few turnaround jump shots," Jeter said. "Just a couple plays like that — that's why he's one of the best players in the country, he made some tough shots.

"The difference in that stretch was some of the things [he] was able to do one-on-one," Jeter added.

Wisconsin went into halftime with a 35-20 lead, but it was that key run that gave the Badgers some breathing room.

"Sometimes, runs like that happen at different times, it just happened to be at that time," Ryan said. "We got the ball in pretty good position, [and] Tuck knows how to finish around the paint; he had some good looks inside."

For Tucker, he knew it was time for him to take over.

"Knowing a team like Milwaukee, they're a team that can make something happen," Tucker said, "so I wanted to concentrate on making sure we got a big lead, we got ahead and put the game out of distance right from that point."

After halftime, Wisconsin went right back to work, never letting UW-M get within 10 points.

While Tucker led the way for the Badgers, his fellow seniors also guided the way.

Kammron Taylor scored 10 points, and Jason Chappell chipped in eight points and five rebounds.

In a game sandwiched in between two ranked teams (No. 17 Marquette and No. 2 Pittsburgh), Ryan knew his seniors would step up, especially against an in-state rival such as UW-M.

"Those guys have been in these state games before, and we knew it was going to be a grinder," Ryan said. "The upperclassmen, they were a little more patient. … Consistency comes with age, normally."

Now, the Badgers will be getting ready for yet another Panthers team, though this time it will be the No. 2 Pittsburgh Panthers, who will visit the Kohl Center this Saturday.

With the national implications of this game, Wisconsin's players already know just how important it is.

"It's a big game for our program," Taylor said. "We had a pretty game last week against Marquette, so the seniors, we're going to definitely make sure the younger guys don't get caught up in it."

"It's another chance to prove ourselves," Tucker added. "We always talk about the respect that we want to get as a program; this is our opportunity."

Having already seen both teams this season, Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton offered his preview of the Wisconsin-Pittsburgh matchup following the Seminoles 88-66 loss to the Badgers in Madison back on Nov. 28.

"They are two of the better teams in the country that have totally bought into the systems that the coaches have, and they execute very similarly," Hamilton said. "They're both very patient, they make great decisions and they seem to move the ball until the defense makes a mistake."

Ryan, on the other hand, downplayed the hype of the game, saying it's just another game for the Badgers to play in the 2006-07 season.

"It's the next one on the schedule," he said. "They're good."

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