The Wisconsin Badgers will continue their pre-conference play when they take on Wake Forest. Wisconsin is coming off of a third-place finish in the Battle 4 Atlantis. This tournament in the Bahamas was highlighted by the Badgers nearly knocking off Kansas, who was then ranked third in the nation. It also saw Wisconsin freshman Connor Essegian become a fan-favorite among Badgers fans. Now back at Madison, Wisconsin will face a tall task taking on the Demon Deacons and their high-powered offense.
Quick Hit #1: Wake Forest Puts Up a lot of Points
The Wake Forest Demon Deacons are averaging 81.7 points per game while shooting 47.8% from the floor. Their leading scorer is Tyree Appleby, who averages 17.9 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 5.6 assists per game. The fifth-year senior who transferred to Wake Forest from Florida is shooting 50% from the field and 41.4% from three.
In Wake Forest’s last game, sophomore Cameron Hildreth recorded a triple-double with a stat line of 14 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists. Junior guard Damari Monsanto added 20 points in the Deacons’ 97-70 blowout of Hampton.
Quick Hit #2: Wisconsin Will Need to Control Pace of Game to Win
Oddsmakers have the Wisconsin Badgers favored to win despite Wake Forest’s high-powered offense. However, Wisconsin will need to control the pace of play in order to limit Wake Forest’s possessions. Wisconsin plays a slower style of basketball and averages 62.7 points per game. However, they have held their opponents to just 54.0 points per game this season. If the Badgers can limit the possessions of the Deacons’ offense, they can limit their scoring potential.
Quick Hit #3: Let Wahl Lead the Way
The Wisconsin Badgers are led in points and rebounds per game by senior forward Tyler Wahl. Wahl is averaging 14.0 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. In the Badgers’ thriller against Kansas, he put up 23 points and 10 rebounds. The Deacons have an excellent backcourt, but Wahl can do some damage in the front court and down low. The Badgers must rely on their senior star to set the tone for the game.