Following their exit from the Big Ten Conference tournament, the Wisconsin Badgers basketball team is left with quite a few questions regarding their season. Especially, regarding where the team should go from here after failing to meet the lofty expectations the team set for themselves. With the NCAA Tournament seemingly gone, the Badgers may still have an opportunity to play again this season.
Wisconsin Badgers Basketball Struggle With Young Unit
In what was already supposed to be a year of fine tuning the team, Wisconsin became their own worst enemy this season. The Badgers played inconsistent basketball much of the year, especially down the stretch as the magnitude of the games increased. Wisconsin beat Western Michigan and Minnesota back-to-back on January 3rd, and did not win two games in a row after those wins.
The offense in particular struggled to find their stride the last two months of the season. Before January, Wisconsin scored over 70 points in a game six times. After January, the team did so three times and lost two of those games. Wisconsin also scored under 60 points six times since January and lost all six of those games.
Wisconsin’s inconsistent play was what led to the downfall of a young team this season. Coach Greg Gard has noted that this often happens with young teams and accepted the fault for their inconsistent play in 2023. The Wisconsin Badgers basketball team needs time to adjust to each other while learning a new style of basketball. Often the team began to move away from their designed plays, which is also another sign of a young team.
Is Time All The Wisconsin Badgers Basketball Team Needs?
Perhaps the biggest question following the 2023 season for Wisconsin has been what the team should do next. While many fans want Greg Gard gone due to their performance, giving this young team time and patience may be just what they need.
One word that coach Gard has used to describe the process the team must endure is “Maturing”. The Badgers need to mature and grow into college basketball players. The team has already proved they have the ability to win, with amazing games against Marquette and Maryland. Wisconsin has also proved they have the resiliency to come back against teams like Ohio State, Kansas, and Purdue.
Despite the results not going in the way the Badgers would like, their ability has been undeniable. The Wisconsin Badgers basketball team can certainly be a threat next year with the right development. Greg Gard and his staff getting another chance to grow the team will also contribute to their success.
What Is Next After The Big Ten Conference Tournament Exit?
The Badgers can still certainly receive a bid for the NIT Tournament. The question becomes whether or not the team will decide to accept a bid, if it is given. Wisconsin is a young team and giving them something to compete for to end the season could be a smart move. However, it could also be a bad idea to run the team out there for a less meaningful tournament.
Running into an injury or losing a player potentially for next season would be the worst case scenario. Yet, the Badgers could accept their bid and go on a run, which could help in the long-term development of the team.
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