Wisconsin did not look ready for conference play in first game against Buckeyes

Wisconsin (3-5, 0-1 Big Ten) fell to Ohio State (6-3, 1-0 Big Ten) last Saturday in Madison 83-58 to open up Big Ten play for each team.

Prior to what would be a disappointing loss to the Buckeye football program in the Big Ten Championship later in the day, the Badger basketball loss was perhaps even more disheartening.

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Ohio State started out the game hot, shooting 78.3 percent from the field and 87.5 percent from 3 as a team before the half.  Wisconsin simply could not keep up, as they shot less than 30 percent from both the field and beyond the arc for the first half.

Unsurprisingly, Keita Bates-Diop was the main offensive weapon for the Buckeyes this game.  The small forward shot 7-9 from the field with 17 points for a double-double with a team-high 11 rebounds and 5 assists.

There are few positives to take away from this game, as star forward Ethan Happ was completely shut down for only 6 total shot attempts with the rest of his teammates unable to keep up.  Freshmen Kobe King and Brian Davison were the only players with significant minutes to put up decent stat lines on the scoring end, each going 4-8 from the field.

Men’s Basketball: Badgers run out of ammo in battle with CavaliersThe University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team fell short yet again in their ACC/Big Ten Challenge matchup against Virginia Monday Read…

However, in limited minutes Nate Reuvers was also able to perform, going 4-4 from the field on 2-2 from three as a 6’10 true freshman. While the Badgers were dominated in practically every facet of this game, at least some of the younger players showed promise on the offensive end.

The postseason outlook after this game appears bleak; The Badgers are 3-5 and have lost every game against power conference opponents this year.  While in past games Wisconsin was at least able to stay competitive in their losses, the blowout against an unranked opponent leaves many wondering if Wisconsin will miss the NCAA tournament for the first time in 19 years.

The last time the Badgers were in a situation this dire was 2 years ago where they began the season 6-5 with losses to Milwaukee, Marquette, and Western Illinois.  Fortunately, the Badgers hot finish landed them a spot in the tournament that year and they will need a similar turn in momentum to reach that goal this season.