MADISON, Wis. -- Riding a four-game win streak, the Badgers will try to stay in the hunt for a Big Ten championship Thursday when they host No. 16 Indiana. After starting off 1-3 in Big Ten play, the Badgers have battled back to a 5-3 record, including two tough road wins over Purdue and then-No. 25 Illinois. In his weekly press conference, Bo Ryan said Monday that you can't predict or generalize about streaks in the Big Ten -- there are more subtle factors at work.
"What can I say? I don't say much, because I never try to over-analyze anything," Ryan said. "You get opportunities. Every game is an opportunity. We've been able to take care of some things against certain teams on certain days. I've always felt that so much of the schedule in basketball is who you play, when you play, who you played before, how many days off ... no sport is controlled (by the schedule) more than basketball."
"There is absolutely no rhyme or reason ... It's all about who you're playing (and) when you're playing."
The Badgers have 10 Big Ten games left this year, and will try to take advantage of the key games left on their schedule. With four games left against ranked opponents, the Badgers still have a chance to make a move in the wide-open Big Ten race, even after their disappointing start to conference play.
The Week Ahead
Just one game for the Badgers this week: Wisconsin hosts No. 16 Indiana on Thursday, Jan. 26, at 8 p.m. CST. The game will be broadcast on ESPN2, as the Badgers look for their fifth straight win, and second win over a ranked team this season.
In The Polls
The Badgers snuck back into the AP and Coaches' Polls this week, checking in at No. 25 in both polls. Wisconsin is one of five ranked teams in the Big Ten, behind No. 4 Ohio State, No. 10 Michigan State, No. 16 Indiana, and No. 20 Michigan.
In The Standings
The Badgers are just one-half game out of first place in the Big Ten, behind Ohio State, Michigan State, and Michigan. The Badgers have three games left against teams above them in the standings, with a pair of games left against Ohio State and a road trip to play Michigan State in East Lansing.
The Badgers will try for their ninth-straight win over Indiana this Thursday, and haven't lost to the Hoosiers since 2007. The Badgers have won 10 straight games over Indiana in Madison, but still trail in the overall series 93-63.
A selection of Bo Ryan's words of wisdom from his weekly press conferences:
"I know at the sock hop, I asked more ladies to dance going into my sophomore year than my freshman year." -- Ryan referring to Gasser's extra confidence in his sophomore season.
"I don't think it's a good idea at all. I've never liked the idea of people leaving the program after four years of development. If you make a move, you sit." -- Ryan on the NCAA's rule allowing athletes who have received their degrees to transfer without having to sit out a year.