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Tough Draw for UW

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First of all, congratulations to Bo Ryan and the Wisconsin Badgers for reaching the NCAA Tournament. That’s eleven straight seasons in the Big Dance—quite an accomplishment for the UW basketball program.

 

While earlier I questioned whether Wisconsin deserved to be in the tournament, now that they’re in, I have to wonder about the seed that they received.

 

The Badgers beat Michigan twice during the regular season. Yet the Wolverines are a 10 seed, while Wisconsin is a 12. What’s worse, UW has to face Florida State, one of the hottest teams in the country.

 

FSU senior guard Toney Douglas is averaging 21.1 points per game, and the Seminoles just knocked off North Carolina on Saturday.

 

The Bad News for Wisconsin:

Florida State is far more athletic than UW, and Douglas is a superstar. He’s scored 20+ points in nine of his last ten games. Earlier this year he dropped 32 points on North Carolina in an 80-77 Tar Heel victory.

 

Consider this scary statistic: between January 24th and March 14th the Seminoles lost four games. All of the losses were by five points or less. Three of the losses were by just three points. And the teams Florida State lost to during that stretch? Wake Forest, North Carolina, Duke and Boston College.

 

The Good News for Wisconsin:

Although the Seminoles are hot, they’re not invincible. Northwestern handed FSU its first lost of the season during the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.

 

Douglas is the only FSU player to average double figures in scoring, and despite Florida State’s size, Wisconsin is probably the better defensive team.

 

The game is being played in Boise, so there’s no home court advantage for the Seminoles.

 

The Bottom Line:

Trevon Hughes must have a monster game on Douglas if Wisconsin is going to pull off the upset. The best chance for the Badgers to get a victory is by controlling the tempo and hoping to win a defensive battle.

 

Personally, I’m picturing a repeat of the Champs Sports Bowl except on the hardwood.