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What’s Going Wrong In Wisconsin?

by: AnthonyP On  Thursday, January 29, 2009

Bo RyanTotal Pro Sports – One of the biggest stories in college basketball right now is not what’s happening at the top of the rankings, it is what’s happening off the charts as Wisconsin tumbles down the Big Ten standings.

For the first time in Bo Ryan’s career as Wisconsin head coach, the team has lost two games in a row at home, and for the first time since 1998 the Badgers have lost five conference games in a row.

During the most recent loss to Purdue, the ESPN announcers diagnosed the problem as a “lack of offensive identity.”  The one thing they didn’t point out is that Bo Ryan, as coach, is responsible for creating that.  Players can only do so much individually and Ryan’s job is to bring them together as a team.

Last night against the Boilermakers with the game on the line, Ryan put the ball in the hands of freshman point guard Jordan Taylor instead of junior Trevon Hughes.  Taylor missed an off-balance lay-up that would’ve tied the game, and the Badgers had to foul.  After Purdue made both their free throws, Trevon Hughes sank a three with .2 seconds left on the clock, and the Badgers lost by one point.

Granted, Taylor did make a big three against Iowa to send that game to overtime, but still, why not give the ball to Hughes, one of your best scorers?

As a Badger sports fan, it is frustrating to watch another season where our high hopes are smashed immediately after conference play starts.  We just went through this in the fall with the football team, and now it’s déjà vu all over again, to quote the great Yogi Berra.  The basketball team, like the football team, has the talent but is underachieving.

For a team expected to challenge for the Big Ten title, this five-game losing streak isn’t the final nail in the coffin – it’s the dirt being poured in and the grass being replaced.

Unless there’s some sort of miracle in the last ten games of the season, the Badgers’ high hopes will have to wait another season.

Via guest reporter Brian at Illegal Use Of Hands




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