Opening Comments: Wisconsin won a hard-fought home victory 66-59 despite a second half surge by Purdue.
Wisconsin won with the basics: Made their free throws, rebounded well, avoided fouls, avoided turnovers, and played good defense. This is a classic example of a Bo win that he will not get much credit for: They did their thing and out executed their opponent.
Summarizing the game in a few words: Although UW did not shoot well, they compensated by getting up more shots thanks to superior rebounding on both ends of the floor and a decided turnover advantage. While the free throw line was good to UW, it was not decisive, UW outscored PU from the floor and the line.
Pace: The game had 59 possessions. Actually, based upon the formula, PU had 61 and UW 58, which is obviously incorrect. So, my habit is to average the two team’s results, which is how I got to 59 and how it might disagree with Pomeroy and others who only do it team-by-team.
Efficiency: Was it good offense or good defense? UW scored at 1.12 PPP and gave PU 1.00 PPP. Since PU was winning during the last minute, the difference in the game occurred during that time period.
In the first half, UW scored 1.14 PPP and PU only .67 PPP. Then, PU hit 9 of their first 10 shots in the second half, or whatever it was. UW absorbed that blow and came back to win.
Shooting: UW had the unusual situation where they put up more shots from each point on the floor: Beyond the arc, inside the arc, and at the line.
eFG%: PU’s eFG% was 53%, fourth best for an opponent this year. UW was at 48%, 14th best out of 21 games. But, remember that an offensive rebound undoes a missed shot, which is not captured in eFG%. We rebounded well.
3 pt shooting: Both teams shot about the same percentage, but UW put up more shots. PU was 5 of 13 for 38%. UW was 7 of 18 for 39%. That gave UW a plus 6 points from the arc.
2pt shooting: PU was 18 of 35 for 51%. UW took two extra shots, 37 and made two fewer baskets, 16, for a low 43% from inside the arc. PU outscored UW by one in the paint, 11 to 10. This gave PU a plus 4 points inside the arc but UW was plus two from the floor.
1pt shooting: UW kept up the good free throw shooting. UW was 13 of 16 for 81%, very close to our nation-leading 82%. PU hit 8 of 9 for 89%. They needed to make up more than two points they lost from the field, but gave up 5 at the line for the 7 point game margin.
The “We Make More Free Throws Than Our Opponents Attempt” Scoreboard
UW Makes: 269 Opponent Attempts: 331 Difference: -62
We actually picked up four this game.
The Trevor Mbakwe Challenge:
We have now caught up to Trevor in games played, 21. Here are the number of free throw misses:
Can we catch him?
Location UW Opp
Arc 32% 25%
Mid Range 18% 17%
Paint 30% 44%
FT Line 20% 14%
Rebounding: UW ruled the boards on both ends of the floor.
UW Defensive end: There were 24 rebounding opportunities and PU got 4 or only 17%. Not good for them, excellent for UW.
UW Offensive End: When UW shot, there were 33 rebounding opportunities and UW snarfed up 12 for 36%. That is very good for a B1G game.
UW shot 23 of 55 from the floor for 42%. Not good. But, they grabbed 12 offensive rebounds thus negating 12 misses and changing the results to 23 of 43 for 53%.
PU was 23 of 48 for 48%. But, after recovering 4 of their misses, they were at 23 of 44, 52%. Or, they got one extra shot and missed it.
Normally I cannot do this analysis because I do not know if there were offensive rebounds off free throws. In this case, PU missed one free throw, which I believe we got the rebound from. UW missed only 3 FTA, and I am quite sure we did not get rebounds off of those misses.
Turnovers: PU turned the ball over 22% of the time (13 TO’s) to UW’s 12% (7 TO’s). PU did better with their fewer TO’s by scoring 11 points to UW’s 10. But, they also had 6 fewer opportunities to press their superior eFG% against UW.
Opportunity Index: UW was a plus 14, second best of the year. We were plus 8 on offensive rebounds and plus 6 on turnovers. From a points perspective, UW outscored PU by 5 on second chance points and gave one back off turnovers for a net plus 4.
Fouls: PU out fouled UW 19 to 11. Those extra 8 fouls lead to UW taking 7 more free throws and making 5 extra shots.
Playing time: Bo played 8 in total, 7 got more than ten minutes (Smith had a quality 6 minutes). Evans had a productive 19 minutes. Taylor, Leuer and Gasser all had more than 35 minutes.
Painter had a similar rotation playing 10 in total and 7 more than 10 minutes. Johnson and Moore played 39 and 38 respectively.
Notable Performances: Leuer and Taylor shouldered the load, per usual. Leuer had a dub dub with 24 points on 18 shots (6-6 from the line), and 13 rebounds. He was tagged for 4 of UW’s 7 turnovers. Taylor got 15 on 13 shots, 6-8 from the line, and 7 boards. He got two of UW’s TO’s (Jarmusz the other). Mrs. Turomon reminded me that she chose Taylor as her favorite player last night. Jon and Jordan, I salute you!
Evans and Gasser came up big. Evans scored 10 on 9 shots, but were they ever timely. He chipped in a rebound and avoided any nasty turnovers. Evans had a major defensive play in the lane late tying up the PU player (was it Moore?), hit a key two pointer from the free throw line to take the lead, and scored on a breakaway dunk to put the game away. Gasser was an ultra productive 4-4 from the field, 11 points, four boards and no turnovers. Ryan and Josh, long will the tales of your exploits be told around the campfires of my people.
Keaton had a quiet day scoring 6 on 6 shots. But, he had two offensive boards and no turnovers along with a block and a steal. Q came in and played a solid game for 6 important minutes.
Grading Shetown’s Predictions
1. Badgers drain more than 40% of their threes. Purdue has the worst three-point defense in the conference and the familiar confines of the Kohl should combine for a lights-out performance. Miss. They hit 39% of their deep balls. Close, but no cigar.
2. Keaton is the leading scorer for the Badgers. He's a Boiler killer, shooting 75% from beyond the arc against Purdue, and having both of his two >20-point games against them. Miss. He was the fifth leading scorer on the team with 6. He passed the Boiler-killer baton to Gasser and Evans.
3. Wisconsin grabs more than 73% of the rebounding opportunities on the defensive end. They neutralize one of the better offensive rebounding teams in the Big Ten. Hit. They got a great 83%.
My Prediction: The Badgers rebound, escaping with a 66-64 victory in 58 possessions. Hit. UW’s 66 was right on, you gave PU more credit with 64 than they deserved (59 actual points), and the possessions was close (I have 59).
Closing Thoughts: Good win. PU is a top ranked team and UW ground out the win by doing what we do – stick to the game plan and win.
I hope we can beat then in West Lafayette so Bo can even his record against the Boilers at 8-8.
We still have a home game against OSU coming up, which we have a decent chance of losing. We only have one road win so far – NU. So, we must start piling up some other road wins against our remaining competition – Iowa, Purdue, Michigan, Indiana and OSU. But first, we must take out MSU Sunday.
I remember when Taylor was a freshman there were threads about how he could not score and was a wasted scholarship. Anyone want to admit to that? Raise your hands. Taylor’s offense was rather poor. He had a Pomeroy o-rating of 81. Now it is 131, one of the best in the nation. In my opinion, posters concentrate on offense too much and focus too much on scoring. Bo expects people to protect the ball and play defense first. Scoring can come later, if at all.
As long as players are efficient, they need to be prolific. If a player disappears for a few games, no problem as long as they are efficient.
When UW drops a game, people come out of the woodwork spewing their pent up venom directed at our players. Ugh. I guess you will need to bottle that up for another game and release it some other time.