After maintaining their spot in the AP poll, holding steady at No. 23, the Wisconsin Badgers basketball program also celebrated an individual accolade, as combo guard John Blackwell claimed Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors from the league office.
Blackwell’s achievement marks a significant milestone, making him the first Wisconsin player since Brad Davison to earn multiple Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors. Other notable Badgers who’ve accomplished this feat include Ethan Happ (3x), Nigel Hayes (4x), and Sam Dekker (2x).
Greg Gard and the Badgers went 1-1 this past week with a road win over the Michigan State Spartans in East Lansing and a road loss to the No. 1 Arizona Wildcats on Saturday. In those games, Blackwell averaged 13.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.5 assists on 50% shooting from the floor while connecting on 4-of-7 attempts from beyond the arc.
The 6-foot-4 guard also turned the ball over just one time in 46 total minutes between the two contests. He has now scored in double figures seven times this season and is 4th on the team in scoring, averaging 9.9 points per game in just over 18 minutes a contest.
Blackwell has been a revelation for the Wisconsin men’s basketball team this season, and is currently second on the Badgers in points over replacement per game (PRPG) at 4.1, according to Barttorvik, behind only fourth-year junior Steven Crowl.
He also leads the Wisconsin basketball team in offensive rating, true shooting percentage, 3-point shooting, and is the team leader in both free throws made (32) and attempted (37).
The 7-3 Badgers return to the court Thursday at 7 p.m. (CT) to face Jacksonville State in a game broadcasted on Big Ten Network.