For the Wisconsin Badgers in the 2019-20 season, big changes will be forthcoming with the losses of Ethan Happ and Khalil Iverson. Looking ahead to the future, B5Q writers asked ourselves, “Who should be the players to watch for next season?”
Six of us sat down to discuss and rank the returning/incoming 2019-20 players 1-15 based on our respective point of views (criteria we laid out on Friday morning). We have started to reveal and break down our top five from No. 5 to No. 1 in the past few days, and will continue to do so on Sunday.
No. 3 on B5Q’s “Badgers to watch” list will be a new face on the court next season. When he first sees time depends upon a potential waiver is approved to allow him to the start of the 2019-20 campaign or if he is forced to sit until after first semester is completed.
Regardless, Ohio State transfer Micah Potter brings Big Ten starting experience and some interesting skill sets to the team that will miss the inside presence of Happ.
- Did not play due to transferring to Wisconsin. Per UW in January, program plans to apply for a waiver to have him play immediately next season, rather than after the first semester of the 2019-20 season.
- Career at Ohio State: 59 games (16 starts); averaged 4.1 points, 2.8 rebounds and 12 minutes per contest.
Why B5Q ranked him at No. 3
Our group of writers came together once again to debate the merits of Potter’s position on the list. The conversation has been lightly edited for clarity.
Jake Kocorowski: Sitting at No. 3 on our list of Wisconsin players to watch in 2019-20 is Ohio State transfer Micah Potter.
Now disclaimer, folks, at the moment he has to sit for the first semester of the season, but UW told B5Q in January that the plan was to apply for a waiver to have him play immediately next season.
However, the big man has experience and whenever he does play, he could bring a big presence to the front court with Happ leaving.
Drew Hamm: Micah Potter aka The Mystery Box.
Drew: Anyways, that clip is how I feel about Potter ... and I’m Peter Griffin.
Owen Riese: Wow a big that can shoot the three and not only play in the paint? what a revelation.
Jake: Owen and Kevin, you had Potter at No. 5 and 6, respectively—the lowest of our six writers. What stands out to you about his game?
Ryan: Wisconsin will get back their prototypical big man situation.
Drew: Mike Wilkinson couldn’t shoot the three!
Ryan: 33.7% career shooter from outside, not bad for a big.
Neal: Micah Potter is Keaton Nankivil!!
Ryan: Whenever Potter dunks, I vote the standard will be to include #Leviosa in all tweets about said dunks.
Jake: Awww man, Ryan, is that a Harry Potter reference?
Neal: Ahem, its #leviOsa
Drew: Beat me to it!
Kevin: My reasoning for having Potter as No. 6 is we just don’t know how good he can actually be. It’s not like his numbers at Ohio State were very eye popping (4.1 ppg and 2.8 rpg in 12 minutes played a game) but he has all the tools to be a perfect fit at Wisconsin. He can shoot outside the paint which will be refreshing to watch and going off some of his Ohio State highlights he can move pretty well for big man.
Ryan: Sorry Owen... (well played)
Owen: I don’t think he’ll be a huge epiphany to the offense, but his intrinsic value is to free up Trice and Davison to drive to the hoop because there won’t be a guy planted there.
Kevin: I think Potter can give this team a real boost next season, but I think expectations should be tempered just a bit.
Jake: I had him the highest out of our writers at No. 3. I think the biggest thing for this Wisconsin squad is finding replacements for Happ’s production. It’s going to have to come from a little bit of everyone in the frontcourt, but Potter’s presence could be a huge lift for the team.
Drew: Every statistical category of Potters’ improved from 2017 to 2018 except his three-point percentage. If he can get that back up to Wilkinson levels, he’ll be valuable.
Jake: You all called it out that we do not necessarily know what we’ll see out of him, but just based on “breakout potential” in the parameters, it could be huge.
Kevin: Do we think he starts next to Reuvers?
Ryan: Would be awesome to have the two of them on the court at the same time.
Neal: I think the fact he’s played two seasons of Big Ten basketball at a position the Badgers have two returning (contributing) players is enough to warrant quite a bit of focus. He will almost certainly be on the floor quite a bit, whether his production warrants it or not.
Between Reuvers penchant for foul trouble and Ford still figuring out the maximum defensive effort thing, someone will need to be guarding post players.
Ryan: And it seems like he can knock down free throws too. Shot 80% as a sophomore.
Drew: Walt McGrory on Trevor Anderson’s shoulders could guard a post player.
Jake: I want that to happen now.
Neal: Would they do the bit wear Trevor wears the shorts and McGrory the jersey?
Ryan: Oversized jersey.
Neal: Or would they each wear the full set???
Drew: Like kids trying to get into an R-rated movie.
Ryan: I would put Anderson on the bottom, looks to have a stronger base, although coming off the knee injury ...
Neal: Gard should send them to the scorer’s table like that once just to see if it works.
Drew: I’m writing a post on the potential of two players checking into the game as one and YOU CAN’T STOP ME, JAKE!