Tomorrow night is the home finale for Wisconsin Badgers. They will conclude their home season against fifth-ranked Purdue Basketball. The Boilermakers have already clinched at least a share of the Big Ten Conference. A win for the Badgers would go a long way for their NCAA Tournament hopes. Tip time is 8 PM on FS1. Here is a preview of tomorrow night’s game.
What To Do With Zach Edey
The Badgers, like any other team, had their hands full with Zach Edey last season. At 7’4, it’s almost impossible to guard him one on one. Last season, the Badgers threw players like Steven Crowl, Ben Carlson, and Christ Vogt at Edey. This was a way to stay out of foul trouble. Wisconsin was able to sweep the season series vs. Purdue Basketball, but Edey had his way.
Now as a junior, Edey has gotten a lot better. He’s averaging over 30 minutes a game and 22 points a game. He’s become one of the best players in the country and a favorite to win the Wooden Award. I would expect Steven Crowl and Carter Gilmore to have their shot. Don’t be surprised if we see Chris Hodges as well. The Badgers will need all their big men on notice tomorrow night.
Guard Play Could Be The Difference vs. Purdue Basketball
Purdue has two good guards in Fletcher Loyer and Braden Smith. Both are freshmen and will be really good guards by the time their Purdue Basketball careers are over. The two combine for about 21 points a game, shooting at least 33% from three. They can get hot, especially if they are left open.
However, Smith and Loyer have struggled lately, especially with physical play. That is to be expected with freshmen in the Big Ten. We don’t know if Chucky Hepburn will be available tomorrow, but players like Max Klesmit, Jordan Davis, Connor Essegian, and Kamari McGee will have to defend Smith and Loyer really well and make them uncomfortable.
Wisconsin vs. Purdue Basketball Prediction
This could be the right time for the Badgers to face Purdue. Despite having a share of the Big Ten title, they have lost three of their last four games. We don’t know if Chucky Hepburn will go or not, either. If not, it is a massive loss for the Badgers.
Purdue Basketball is a really efficient team on both sides. They shoot 46% from the field as a team and 76% from the line. They will be looking to avenge a 79-71 home loss to Indiana Saturday. Wisconsin is looking to rebound from the heartbreaking overtime loss to Michigan Sunday.
A month ago, I would have told you Purdue would win this game by 30. These teams were going in opposite directions. Now? I think Wisconsin has a chance to get an upset win they need for their NCAA Tournament résume.
I think Zach Edey will get his points. There’s almost no way to defend him. I think it’s how players like Smith, Loyer, and Mason Gillis play. If they can produce for Purdue Basketball, it will be a long day for Wisconsin. Can the Badgers have a great offensive day in their final home game, and what could be the last time we see Tyler Wahl on the Kohl Center court?
Every now and then, you need to take your shot and go with a bold prediction. I am going to take mine here. I think Wisconsin can have a similar shooting day they had at Michigan with or without Chucky Hepburn. Depth will be tested, and they need some things to go their way too. Give me the Badgers in a massive upset tomorrow night.
Wisconsin 69 – Purdue Basketball 67
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