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Wisconsin Men’s Basketball vs. Stanford Game Preview

Let’s talk Brew City Battle!

NCAA Basketball: PAC-12 Conference Tournament - Stanford vs Arizona Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Both Wisconsin men’s and women’s basketball are in action tonight as part of the Brew City Battle in Milwaukee. The games will be played at Miller I mean American Family Field with the women’s team taking on Kansas State and the men’s team taking on the Stanford Cardinal.

When: Women’s game tips at 3:30, Men’s game tips at 6:30

Where: American Family Field Milwaukee, WI

How (to watch): Fox Sports 1

Line: UW -4, total of 135

Series History: According to sports reference Wisconsin and Stanford have played 9 times, with the Badgers taking four of the contest. The most recent meeting was in 2018 where the Badgers won 62-48 on the back of a dominating performance from D’Mitrik Trice.

Opponent Preview

NCAA Basketball: Pac-12 Media Day Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin men’s basketball will square off with the Stanford Cardinal who come into this game 1-0 on the season after defeating Pacific 88-78 earlier this week. The Cardinal come into this season with NCAA tournament expectations and are a pretty consensus top-5 team in most PAC-12 preseason predictions. In the preseason PAC-12 voting the coaches of the conference were picked to finish fifth in the conference standings.

Stanford has a strong trio of talent to lean on in 2022 with a couple of returning players and a new face added to the lineup. One of the returning stars is Senior Spencer Jones who returns after an All PAC-12 honorable mention season last year. However, Jones missed the opener with a lower-body injury and is considered day-to-day. Whether he plays this evening sounds like it is still up in the air. Additionally, the Cardinal return Sophomore Harrison Ingram. Ingram had a dominating year last year which ended with him bringing home PAC-12 Freshman of the Year honors.

In terms of new faces, Stanford also welcomes Michael Jones who previously played at Davidson. Jones is a lights-out shooter from Woodbury, MN. How he ended up at Stanford and not Wisconsin is beyond me! Jones was dominant in the Cardinal’s opener as he put in 31 points on a 9-15 shooting night.

Things to watch for Wisconsin

NCAA Basketball: UW-Eau Clarie at Wisconsin Kayla Wolf-USA TODAY Sports

The shooting: Look, this game is being played in a baseball stadium. That’s cool and all, but I don’t know if it’s really conducive to knocking down shots. Generally, when we see basketball games played in football stadiums and other big venues like this it can sometimes take both teams a little bit to start finding their rhythm. Add in that both of these teams are pretty good on the defensive end and you could have a game that starts a little... ugly. Well, beautiful to some!

The matchups: I’ll be interested to see what Wisconsin does from a matchup perspective on the defensive end. Harrison Ingram is a big, physical player standing at 6’7” and 230 pounds. I’d assume Tyler Wahl draws that matchup given his ability on the defensive end. Crowl will likely guard Raynaud and center James Keefe who split time at the five spot in the Stanford opener. Stanford plays a true point guard in Michael O’Connell which means Chucky Hepburn likely lines up there.

Beyond that, it’ll be interesting to see who guards Spencer Jones should he play, and Michael Jones. Spencer Jones stands at 6’7” but can really spread the floor. Michael Jones stands at 6’5” and is a very dangerous shooter from beyond the arch. I’d assume Jordan Davis and Max Klesmit would draw those matchups which would be a good test for both early on in the season.

Final Prediction

I think this one is going to be a little slow early, which isn’t a bad thing as both teams play very strong defense. I do think Wisconsin might have some matchup issues that will allow Stanford to put some things together on the offensive end. However, I think Tyler Wahl and company find a way to put together enough buckets and stops to pull this game out late. I’ll take the Badgers to pull one out late in a close battle 65-61.