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Who is on Wisconsin Basketball’s Mt. Rushmore?

Who are the best basketball players of all time that have worn a Badgers uniform?

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Syndication: Journal Sentinel Rick Wood / USA TODAY NETWORK

I’ve explored the concept of Wisconsin Badgers football Mt. Rushmores in the past, but with hoops season now jumping to the forefront, it makes good sense to also look at this for Wisconsin Basketball.

My “Wisconsin Basketball Mt. Rushmores” features first, second, and third teams, along with 10 honorable mentions. These mountains will be position-free and are not bound by a particular era, although they are admittedly biased toward 1994 to the present.

So, let’s get started, Badger tourists.

1st Team All-Mt. Rushmore

Frank Kaminsky: What can you say about Frank The Tank that hasn’t already been said? National Player of the Year, two Final Fours, a polished scorer inside and out. A quirky persona. Some early headband/goggle flair. He was a Badger legend in every way.

Michael Finley: A stalwart in the early 90s Badger Renaissance, Finley came in hot as a freshman and never let up. He is now the Badgers’ second-leading scorer of all time. He was also a two-time All-Big Ten selection and is currently the No. 18 scorer all-time in the Big Ten.

Devin Harris: A rare NBA dude (drafted No. 5 overall) who was honing his craft for the Badgers, Harris was the Big Ten Player of the Year in 2004 and also a second-team All-American after averaging 19.5 PPG. That year, he led the Badgers to the Elite Eight, before being drafted by the Mavericks at No. 5 overall. Trivia: Devin recently graduated from Wisconsin, making good on an old promise.

Alando Tucker: Tucker was a certified stud for the Badgers, averaging an absurd 19.5 PPG over his last two seasons. He was also an All-American and Big Ten Player of the Year in 2007, and finished as Wisconsin’s all-time leading scorer. Some unfortunate recent events have rightfully soured many on him, but his incredible accomplishments in a Wisconsin uniform can’t be denied, so he still finds his way onto this mountain.

2nd Team All-Mt. Rushmore

Tracy Webster: Oddly unheralded relative to what he accomplished, Webster (along with Finley) was a prime architect in ushering into the modern era of winning Wisconsin Basketball. His flashy passes and clutch scoring helped lead the Badgers to their first NCAA bid (and win) in 47 years.

Sam Dekker: Yes, he was a bit of an acquired taste for Bo Ryan early on, but a much more polished and poised Dekker was instrumental to back-to-back Badger Final Fours. His clutch performances in the 2015 tourney are the stuff of legend.

Ethan Happ: Although some of his greatness was overshadowed by a poor 15-18 finish in 2018-19 and free throw issues, Happ was an absolute load for defenses on his way to being named first-team All-Big Ten an absurd three straight seasons. Ethan averaged 15.3 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 3 assists for his career, and led the team in all three categories twice, an incredible feat.

Danny Jones: A somewhat forgotten Badger titan, Jones was a key cog in the best Badger team since the 1940s back in ‘88-89 (narrowly missing an NCAA bid), averaging almost 20 points per game over his final two seasons. He led the team in both scoring and rebounding as both a junior and senior, leaving him as Wisconsin’s all-time leading scorer until Michael Finley took his place in 1995.

3rd Team All-Mt. Rushmore

Jordan Taylor: A smooth-shooting and slick-passing fan favorite, Taylor hit the ground running as a Badger and never looked back, averaging 14.4 points per game, 4.7 assists, and 3.1 rebounds for his career. He was also first-team All-Big Ten twice, and second-team All-American once. When he left the Badgers, Taylor held the mark for the all-time best assist-to-turnover ratio in college basketball history.

Jon Leuer: Leading the Badgers in both rebounding and scoring in both his junior and senior seasons, this sweet-shooting All-Big Ten forward always seemed to be the best and most poised dude on the floor. He finished his storied career as Wisconsin’s 12th-leading scorer.

Claude Gregory: Averaged 16 points and 8 rebounds over his career, including a silly 20.4 points per game and 9.2 rebounds as a senior in ‘80-81. While his Badger teams weren’t successful, Gregory was a standout who was absolutely robbed by never garnering first-team All-Big Ten honors.

Kirk Penney: The newest Badger assistant coach was a lights-out shooter with 217 career three-pointers, and was named first-team All-Big Ten twice for new coach Bo Ryan. He was also an underrated rebounder during his time with the Badgers, averaging an impressive six boards per game as a senior.

10 Bench Candidates For Future Wisconsin Basketball Mt. Rushmores

Bronson Koenig

Brian Butch

Johnny Davis

Nigel Hayes

Josh Gasser

Trevon Hughes

Wes Matthews

Rashard Griffith

Trent Jackson

Mike Wilkinson