Opening Comments: Congratulations to PSU on an important 56-52 home win. It is tough to play on the road, the last game with NU notwithstanding. This one went the wrong way.
PSU made their shots, UW did not. Sometimes the game is that simple. There was a stretch in the second half where Bruesewitz, Jarmusz, Gasser, and Nankivil all missed good threes. Meanwhile, PSU made their looks. Oh, well. Give them credit.
Summarizing the game in a few words: UW played well enough in the first half to win, but could not buy a shot in the second half and lost the game at the line when forced to foul.
Pace: The game had 53 possessions. We have been averaging 58 on the year, 57 in conference.
Efficiency: Was it bad offense or bad defense? Mostly poor offense. UW gave up 1.06 PPP, slightly more than the 1.03 we have been giving up in conference this year. But, we only scored .98 PPP, much less than the 1.18 we have been averaging in conference. Life sucks when your shots do not drop.
In the first half, UW scored a so-so 1.07 PPP while PSU was a bad .74PPP. Then, they switched sides of the floor. That one basket must be smaller or something. PSU opened it up for 1.33 PPP in the second half to UW’s .85 PPP.
BTW, if we played like we did the second half the entire game, we would have been in a dead heat with Indiana the other day when they beat Illinois. I doubt that anyone will win a game this year scoring .86 PPP in conference like Indiana did – and cut down the nets.
I am not backing off the clain that UW has a blue ribbon offense. We had a bad shooting day. These things happen. One day does not a trend make.
Shooting: PSU got to the line and made enough freebies to secure a victory.
eFG%: UW was an anemic 45% eFG%. PSU was much better at 55%. We have been at 48% and we typically hold our opponents to 47%.
3 pt shooting: Each team made 6 treys. UW tried 20 (30%) while PSU tried three fewer (35%). Leuer got the collar going 0-4 from deep.
2pt shooting: UW tried 32 two-pointers and made 16 for 50%. Not bad. PSU made 13 of 23 for 57%. That gave UW a 6 point advantage from the floor after taking 3 extra treys and 9 extra two point attempts.
1pt shooting: PSU went to the line for 20 attempts and hit 12 for 60%. For a fine free throw shooting team, that is a major off day. UW failed to capitalize. UW made 2 of their 3 attempts. That gave PSU a plus ten from the line, enough to overcome the 6 they lost from the floor.
The “We Make More Free Throws Than Our Opponents Attempt” Scoreboard
UW Makes: 256 Opponent Attempts: 313 Difference: -78
We are seriously sliding backwards and will not catch up this year.
The Trevor Mbakwe Challenge:
Trevor has missed 55 free throws and UW has missed 57. We are within two! But, Trevor has played one more game than UW. Also, if you only go to the line 3 times like UW did against PSU, it is a rather shallow victory to gain on him. But, let’s take this as a positive sign.
Location UW Opp
Arc 35% 32%
Mid Range 23% 4%
Paint 38% 43%
FT Line 4% 21%
UW simply did not get to the line enough. If not, those threes had better be dropping.
Rebounding: Neither team had a decided rebounding advantage, although PSU did somewhat better.
UW Defensive end: Of the 26 rebounding opportunities, PSU got 8 or 31% of their misses. That is below the national average of 33% but better than UW’s usual 29% for all games, 28% in conference games.
UW Offensive End: UW provided 28 rebounding opportunities and grabbed 7 of their misses for 25%. That is not very good, well below our 35% for the year, but close to our 26% for conference games. UW started out the year as an offensive rebounding juggernaut, but that has reversed since B1G play began.
Turnovers: PSU had 10 for 18% while UW was at 8 for 15%. Both are good numbers and about what one might expect. UW had some very strange turnovers, at least by UW standards. Leuer got picked in mid court and Taylor made some goofy passes, as did Jarmusz with a rare turnover.
Opportunity Index: UW had a plus one OI (Minus one on offensive rebounds, plus two on turnovers). PSU had 10 second chance points to UW’s 8 and UW outscored PSU by 3 off turnovers (11 to 8). That gave UW a net one point from OI events.
Fouls: Fouling was a big part of the game. UW had 20 to PSU’s 10. Those fouls led to 10 extra made FGA’s, the difference in the game.
Playing time: Bo shrunk his bench to 6 players getting double digit minutes. The starters all played at least 28 minutes and Bruesewitz got 15. Evans got 7. Bo played 11 players in total.
PSU went with 7 players getting 10 or more and 8 players total.
Notable Performances: All but 7 points were scored by Leuer, Taylor and Nankivil. Leuer scored 18 on 16 FGA’s (0-4 from deep, ugh), Taylor got 16 on 13 shots, 2-4 from deep but 2 regrettable turnovers. Keaton scored 11 on 10 shots, and grabbed 7 boards, Keaton, long will the tales of your exploits be told around the campfires of my people. Keaton is putting up one of the most efficient campaigns in Badger history, I believe. Keep it going.
Besides Jarmusz’s 5 on 4 shots (one offensive rebound and one turnover), the team really struggled. Gasser, Brust, Evans, and Bruesewitz were a combined 1 of 9 for two points and 3 turnovers. Ugh.
For PSU, Battle got 22 on 16 shots and 4 trips to the line. He was 3-9 from deep, not really great, but the shot over Nankivil was most memorable.
Brooks got 12 on 6 shots. Jackson scored 10 on 9 shots, a trip to the line, and a couple of turnovers.
Grading Shetown’s Predictions
1. Gasser follows up his triple double with a solid outing, scoring 10 or more points. The Lions defense is awful on the perimeter and that should open up opportunities for Josh. Miss. Gasser got two.
2. The Badgers shoot better than 44% from beyond the arc. The Badgers are decent 3-point shooters and PSU sucks at defending the 3. Miss. They hit 30%. They certainly had enough open looks to get to 44%, however.
3. Wisconsin grabs more than 29% of the rebounding opportunities on offense. Yes, I'm calling for a Badger weakness to overtake a Lion strength, so? Miss. We got 25%.
My Prediction: Wisconsin methodically dismantles Penn State, winning 68-54 in 55 possessions. Miss on the score. PSU 56-52 in 53 possessions.
Closing Thoughts: I was reminded of Dick Bennett defense in this game. Apparently, the man guarded by Nankivil was not a threat to score so he implemented the Dick Bennett “No One Crosses The Lane Without Getting Jostled” rule. UW knew PSU’s cuts well enough that Nank could step in front of all the cutters. A lot of bruises ensued.
Games like this happen. Some days you get the bear and some days the bear gets you. That is what makes sports fun.
I will not read the board for a day or two while people vent their frustrations. Then, we have a chance to erase this bitterness with a win over PU.