Maui 4: A little practice, a little play (with photos)

Lots to cover from the first full day in Maui.

First of all, the four-hour time change is playing fits with our body clocks. I think most of the travel party sprung awake sometime between 3 and 5 a.m. Saturday morning. If you were fortunate enough to fall back asleep, you might get acclimated, but for those that were up, it's going to take a few days to feel adjusted.

After a morning laying around the pool or walking the beach, the team held its first practice in Hawaii, heading to Lahainaluna High School Saturday afternoon.

A pretty standard practice altogether, going through a few ball-handling drills, doing some shooting and then beginning preparations for Arizona.

The gym was a classic old high school hardwood. Picture a small, muggy and quiet setting high atop the Lahaina hillside. Whatever the inside of the gym may have lacked for ambience, the view from the school more than made up for it. Pretty spectacular.

ESPN's Jimmy Dykes, Jay Bilas and Bill Raftery stopped by practice to check out the team and talk to Coach Ryan a bit. The Badgers will have Sean McDonough, Bilas and Raftery calling the game on ESPN2 Monday night. Dykes could have Wisconsin on Tuesday or Wednesday depending on how the team does.

Couple of their impressions... Dykes was impressed with Rob Wilson's stroke... Bilas thinks Leuer could become a big-time player this season... they were impressed with the business-like attitude of the team.

Saturday night provided some fun for the guys with an Xbox/EA Sports ocean-side party. Against a back drop of a setting sun, tiki torches and a full buffet, the players had a video game tournament on the new College Basketball 2010 game. Jason Bohannon and Trevon Hughes were UW's representatives in the single-elimination, one-on-one tourney.

XBox/EA Sports Party Photo Gallery

With all the players from all eight teams surrounding the competitors and four giant flat screen TVs, the setting got pretty rowdy during crunch-time. I got a kick out of listening to players coach their digital recreations or get frustrated with "themselves" when they missed shots or turned it over. One player from Arizona was begging teammates Nic Wise to take him out of the game in the closing moments because he couldn't make a shot.

It was also funny to hear the guys laugh about any mistakes or inaccuracies in the game. Some of the college majors listed were funny like Jordan Taylor as a phy-ed teacher (he intends on majoring in marketing). Tim Jarmusz appeared to be either really tan or perhaps African-American and Ian Markolf sported a nice long mullet down his neck on the game. Good stuff.

As for the results... Bohannon lost a first-round heart-breaker as Nic Wise from Arizona hit a last-second 3-pointer to cap a late comeback. Hughes won his first game over an Arizona opponent, but got tripped up in a tight gmae in round two, losing to Grant Gibbs from Gonzaga. Madison.com's Rob Schultz has a recap too.

Let's hope the squad does better in the real competition come Monday.
ON WISCONSIN