After a big win Tuesday against Michigan, Wisconsin stays home tomorrow. They will take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. Rutgers Basketball is on a three-game losing streak after spending most of the Big Ten season in second place. It’s another big game for both teams. Tip time is 11 AM on BTN. Here is a preview of tomorrow’s game.
Which Offense Will Come Through?
Both Wisconsin and Rutgers Basketball are above-average defensive teams. Defense usually travels on the road as well. Wisconsin only averages 65 points a game, while the Scarlet Knights average only 70. Offense just isn’t the identity of either team.
I do think both teams will go on an offensive slump at some point tomorrow. The defenses are too good, in my opinion. Rutgers Basketball did just give up 82 points at home to Nebraska Wednesday. However, I would fall out of my chair if Wisconsin did that tomorrow. They don’t have enough offensive weapons to make that happen.
Something will have to give, however. I think this will be a low-scoring slug fest.
The Better Bench Will Be the Difference vs. Rutgers Basketball
Wisconsin and Rutgers Basketball both have pretty thin benches. They play their starters a lot of minutes. Both teams will most likely go only about seven or eight deep. If players get into foul trouble, the benches will be asked to step up.
The Wisconsin bench only put up 12 points against Michigan, but it was a productive 12 points. Carter Gilmore played excellent defense on Hunter Dickinson. Jordan Davis and Kamari McGee made timely shots and won 50/50 hustle plays. They gave this team a spark. Hopefully, this is a spark the bench can use in the final stretch.
It doesn’t have to be a lot of minutes, but a spark could be all that’s needed to win this game.
Rutgers Basketball vs. Wisconsin Badgers Prediction
Rutgers is only 2-6 on the road this season. They have a big home-court advantage with Jersey Mikes Arena, but they don’t take that on the road with them. I would give the advantage to the Badgers, but Rutgers Basketball is on a three-game losing streak, and this is an experienced team. I would expect the Scarlet Knights to come in with a ton of energy and a purpose, as you don’t want to be playing your worse basketball this time of year.
This is a big opportunity for the Badgers. Their BPI and NET rankings are not great, and it’s hurting their NCAA Tournament resume. Rutgers is pretty safely in the bracket right now. This is a chance for the Badgers to get a home win against a likely tournament team. They have yet to win back-to-back games since January 3. If they want to get in, they have to get on a winning streak.
Rutgers Basketball is physical, and they have three elite defenders in Paul Mulcahy, Caleb McConnell, and Clifford Omoruyi. Expect these players on Tyler Wahl, Steven Crowl, and Connor Essegian. This has to be a game Chucky Hepburn plays well.
Cam Spencer is the wildcard for Rutgers. He’s deadly from three and has taken over games this season. Don’t sleep on Aundre Hyatt too. He’s coming off a 24-point and five three-pointer performance against Nebraska.
I’ve been pretty optimistic about the Badgers NCAA Tournament hopes. I just have a feeling this is the game they can win their second straight and maybe get on a roll. It was encouraging to hear the crowd Tuesday as well. I think that is a factor tomorrow, and the Badgers make timely shots. Give me Wisconsin in another close game.
Wisconsin 64 – Rutgers Basketball 62
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