||at Penn State
||at Ohio State
Dec. 22 - 28
Up Next: Badgers travel to Cal after break
Winners of three straight, No. 5 Wisconsin returns from a nine-day layoff for final exams on campus to take on Cal in Berkeley, California. The Badgers have won 10 consecutive regular-season, non-conference games away from home, including four straight in true road venues. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. (CT) on ESPN2.
Up next, the Badgers will close out their non-conference schedule by hosting Buffalo on Dec. 28. The game will air on BTN with time to be determined on Dec. 21.
NOTES TO KNOW
1 STELLAR START: Wisconsin has opened the season 10-1 or better for the fourth time under Bo Ryan. The Badgers are out-scoring foes by an average of 22.8 ppg.
2 BEATING THE BEST: According to the NCAA official RPI, UW owns five RPI top-100 wins, tied for the highest-such win total in the nation. UW has beaten Green Bay (14), Oklahoma (28), Boise State (31), Marquette (60) and Georgetown (82).
3 AT HOME ON THE ROAD: Wisconsin is 21-5 (.808) away from home over the last two seasons, going 11-2 at neutral sites and 10-3 in road venues. UW's 21 road/neutral wins are the most among major conference teams and the Badgers' .808 win percentage trails only Villanova (.818) and Louisville (.810).
4 BALANCING ACT: According to Ken Pomeroy's efficiency rankings, the Badgaers are third in the nation in adjusted offense (114.7) and seventh in defense (88.3). UW is one of four teams to rank among the top 10 in both categories (UK, Nova, UVA).
5 WHY UW IS GOOD: In addition to tough defense, UW doesn't foul (sixth in the nation at 14.0 fouls per game), doesn't turn it over (second in NCAA with 8.9 TOs per game) and controls the glass (+8.3 rebounding margin is second in the Big Ten).
6 "THE TANK" IS FULL: Preseason All-American Frank Kaminsky earned Battle 4 Atlantis MVP honors after leading the Badgers to the championship. Kaminsky leads the Badgers with 16.0 points, 7.6 rebounds per game, while pacing the Big Ten with four double-doubles. He is shooting 54.5%, including 42.4% from 3FGs and leads UW with 21 blocks and 13 steals.
7 HAYES' EXPANDED GAME: In year two at UW, Nigel Hayes has taken his game to new heights averaging 11.7 ppg and 7.6 rpg. He is shooting a team-high 56.8% from the field (35.0% on 3FGs) and 66.7% at the free throw line.
8 DEKKER PICTURE OF HEALTH: After being hobbled by an ankle injury for the past few games, Sam Dekker returned to form scoring 17 points in back-to-back wins last week. He is averaging 11.8 ppg and shooting 53.3% on the year.
SERIES VS. CAL
Wisconsin and Cal will meet for the ninth time in history on Monday. The Badgers are 3-5 all-time vs. the Golden Bears. This year's meeting marks the return trip of a home-and-home series that included an 81-56 Wisconsin win in Madison on Dec. 2, 2012.
• Cal head coach Cuonzo Martin faced Wisconsin seven times during his playing career at Purdue, owning a record of 5-2.
• Cal assistant coach Tracy Webster played at Wisconsin from 1991-94, scoring 1,264 points. He still holds the UW career assists record with 501 dimes and set the school 3-point shooting mark by hitting 49.0% (75-153) from long range in 1992. Webster also ranks second in Badgers annals with 183 career steals.
NOTES FROM UW's LAST GAME
#5/6 WIS 86, Nicholls 43 - 12/13/14 - Kohl Center
• UW won its third straight game by doubling up Nicholls, 86-43, on Saturday, Dec. 13 at the Kohl Center. The Badgers had five players score in double figures for the second time this season.
• Sam Dekker led UW with 17 points, five rebounds, three assists and two blocks. Josh Gasser scored a season-high 14 points (7-7 FTs) while Nigel Hayes added 12 points and eight rebounds. Frank Kaminsky and Vitto Brown each chipped in 10 points.
• The Badgers shot 70.4% in the first half, going 19-for-27 from the field, including 3-for-6 from 3-point range. UW would finish at 51.9% from the field.
• Wisconsin made a season-high 26 free throws, going 26-for-35 (.743) at the stripe. Nicholls was just 5-for-8. The Badgers also forced Nicholls into 21 turnovers, matching UW's season high.
• The Badgers out-rebounded the Colonels by a margin of 41-to-26. That included 14 offensive rebounds for Wisconsin, matching the season high.
• Wisconsin has won 26 of its last 27 regular-season, non-conference games dating back to Dec. of 2012. The Dec. 3 loss to Duke snapped the longest regular-season, non-con win streak (23) in school history.
• The Badgers have won 49 consecutive regular-season, non-conference games against unranked teams. The last time UW lost to a team that was not ranked in the AP poll was a 58-51 defeat to Notre Dame at the 2010 Old Spice Classic (11/28/10).
• Under Bo Ryan (since 2001-02), Wisconsin owns an overall record of 141-31 (.820) in non-conference games, including a mark of 103-8 (.928) at the Kohl Center.
• Ryan's teams are 86-2 (.977) at the Kohl Center against teams outside of the six major conferences, including a streak of 59 straight wins. UW's only two home losses under Ryan against non-major teams are a 62-55 loss to North Dakota State in 2006 and a 70-67 overtime defeat to Temple in 2001, Ryan's first season.
BEATING THE BEST
• Wisconsin has already posted five wins over teams ranked in the top 100 of the NCAA's official RPI. That figure is tied with Kansas, LSU and Old Dominion for the most in the nation.
• The Badgers are set to play two more RPI top-100 teams before the end of the non-conference schedule: California (83), Buffalo (18).
TAKING THE SHOW ON THE ROAD
UW is renowned for its incredible home success, but it has been just as good on the road lately.
• Wisconsin is 21-5 away from home since the beginning of last season, going 11-2 at neutral sites and 10-3 in road venues.
• Among major conference teams, UW owns the most wins away from home over the last two seasons. Villanova (18-4, .818) and Louisville (17-4, .810) are the only two major conference teams with a higher win percentage away from home over the last two years.
• Last season, the Badgers posted road wins at No. 15 Michigan, No. 15 Iowa, Virginia, Indiana, Illinois, Purdue, Northwestern and Green Bay. This year they have knocked off Marquette and Milwaukee on the road.
• Since Bo Ryan was hired in 2001, Wisconsin has been the Big Ten's best road team, owning the most true road wins (76) and best road win percentage (.524) in the conference.
TRENDS IN 2014-15
The Badgers are off to a 10-1 start and a few trends have emerged in the early going.
• UW has been out-rebounded just twice in 11 games and owns a +8.3 margin on the glass, the second-largest rebounding margin in the Big Ten.
• UW has gone 155-for-217 (.714) at the free throw line, averaging 19.7 FTAs per game. By comparison, the Badgers' opponents are just 86-for-134.
• UW leads the Big Ten allowing just 51.7 points per game. Opponents are shooting just 38.3% and just 32.5% on 3FGs.
• UW is fourth in the Big Ten shooting 49.3% from the field. The Badgers have connected on at least 48% of their shots in eight of 11 games.
• UW is averaging just 8.9 turnovers per game (second in the NCAA).
• Seven different Badgers have hit at least seven 3-pointers on the year. Josh Gasser ranks 12th in the Big Ten shooting 46.7% from 3-point range.
LET'S BE FRANK
• Through 10 games, Wisconsin is allowing just 52.6 points per game, the top mark in the Big Ten and ranking eighth nationally.
• UW has led the Big Ten in scoring defense in eight of the past 12 seasons and finished among the nation's top 10 in nine of the past 12 years.
• The Badgers have held eight of their first 10 opponents to 60 points or less this season, something they did 13 times in 2013-14.
• Wisconsin has limited six teams to their lowest point total of the season: Northern Kentucky (31), Chattanooga (45), Boise State (54), UAB (43), Marquette (38), Milwaukee (54).
LET'S BE FRANK
• Just the third AP Preseason All-American in UW history, Frank Kaminsky is living up to the hype. The senior forward leads the Badgers in points (16.0), rebounds (7.6), blocks (21) and steals (13). He is also second on the team in FG% (.545), 3FG% (.424) and third in assists (25).
• He has scored 15+ points in nine of 11 games this season, with a season-high 26 points vs. Boise State. He has 8+ rebounds in seven of 10 games with a high of 13 (Chattanooga).
• Kaminsky opened the season with three straight double-doubles and earned Big Ten co-Player of the Week (11/24). He has a conference-high four double-doubles on the season.
HAYES FOR DAYS
• The 2014 Big Ten Sixth Man of the Year, Nigel Hayes, has expanded his game in 2014-15. Hayes is third on the team in points (11.7), and second on the team in rebounds rebounds (7.6), blocks (8) and steals (12). He also leads the team shooting 56.8% from the field, which ranks eighth in the Big Ten.
• Hayes has scored in double figures in seven of 11 games this season, including a career-high 25 points vs. Green Bay (Nov. 14) and two double-doubles.
• The sophomore has made great strides in three areas in particular: rebounding, 3FG shooting and FT shooting. Hayes averaged just 2.8 rpg last season, but is now third in the Big Ten at 7.6 boards per game. Hayes did not attempt a 3FG in 2013-14, but is already 7-for-20 (.350) from distance this season. Hayes shot 58.5% from the FT line last season, but is shoooting 30-for-45 (.667) this year.
• A preseason candidate for both the Wooden and Naismith Awards, junior Sam Dekker started the season strong before an ankle injury slowed his productivity and minutes.
• Dekker was averaging 17.3 points per game through the first three games, then reached double figures only twice in his next six games while hobbled.
• Dekker returned to full practice on Dec. 8 and has since returned to form, scoring 17 points in back-to-back games. The Sheboygan, Wisconsin, native notched 17 points (7-10 FGs, 2-2 3FGs) and five rebounds in 20 minutes at Milwaukee (12/10), then led the Badgers with 17 points while adding five rebounds, three assists and two blocks vs. Nicholls (12/13).
• On the season, Dekker ranks second on the Badgers averaging 11.8 ppg and fourth with 4.0 rpg. He is shooting 53.3% from the field, including 35.7% (10-28) on 3FGs.
HIP, HIP DU-JE
• A fifth-year senior, Duje Dukan has emerged as a dangerous weapon off the UW bench. Over three games in The Bahamas during the Battle 4 Atlantis, Dukan averaged 10.7 points and 4.0 rebounds per game. The 6-foot-10 stretch forward wewnt 6-for-11 from 3-point range over the 3 games.
• On the year, Dukan is 12-for-32 (.375) from 3-point range, the third-highest mark on the team. He is also third on the team with 4.7 boards per game.
• Dukan entered the season with a career scoring average of 2.0 ppg and owned just one double-digit scoring game (vs. St. John's in 2013). This season, he scored 11 points vs. UAB (Nov. 26) and had 13 points and six rebounds vs. Georgetown (Nov. 28).
• He also grabbed four+ rebounds in a game on three occassions heading into this season (with a high of five). He has now had four or more rebounds in six games this season, with a high of seven (vs. Nicholls).
CENTURY CLUB WATCH
• The Badgers have four players who could all reach the 1,000-point milestone in the 2014-15 season. If Sam Dekker (937), Frank Kaminsky (902), Josh Gasser (889) and Traevon Jackson (775) match their point production from last season, each would eclipse 1,000 career points.
• In his first 13 seasons at Wisconsin, Bo Ryan has seen 12 players reach the 1,000-point plateau. In fact, seven of the top 14 scorers in Badgers history have come in the Ryan era.
• Wisconsin will enter the season with its highest-ever preseason ranking, checking in at No. 3 in the AP Top 25 and No. 4 in the Coaches Poll. UW has only opened the season in AP top-10 on two occassions: No. 9 in 2006 and No. 10 in 1962.
• The Badgers were also tabbed as the preseason favorite to win the Big Ten, followed by Michigan State at No. 2 and Ohio State at No. 3. This season marks Wisconsin's first-ever preseason No. 1 ranking under Bo Ryan. The Badgers have been in the top three of the preseason rankings six times during Ryan's tenure.
• Senior Frank Kaminsky was named to the 2014-15 preseason All-American team as announced by the Associated Press. Since 1986-87, when the AP started its preseason squad, Kaminsky is the third player in Wisconsin history to earn such distinction joining Jordan Taylor (2011) and Michael Finley (1994).
Junior Sam Dekker also received votes for the AP preseason All-American team.
• Kaminsky was also tabbed the Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year by a panel of conference media members. A unanimous choice for Preseason All-Big Ten, Kaminsky was joined on the All-Conference team by Dekker, marking the first time UW has ever had two players on the preseason list.
BO RYAN, FUTURE HALL OF FAMER
Complete men's basketball game notes in printable PDF format.
• Following Wisconsin's berth into the Final Four, respected basketball writer Dick "Hoops" Weiss typed out a poignant tweet, proclaiming: "will someone please put bo ryan in the naismith hall of fame - has 4 d III national champ rings."
• In addition to his incredible Div. III success, in 13 years at Wisconsin, Ryan has built the best record in Big Ten history, coaching the Badgers to a mark of 156-66 (.703), surpassing runner-up Bobby Knight's mark of .700.
RYAN JOINS BIG TEN'S 700 CLUB
• With a win over Minnesota in the Big Ten tournament, Bo Ryan tallied his 700th career win, becoming just the 40th coach in college basketball to reach the 700-win plateau.
• Ryan is one of five active Division I coaches with 700 wins, joined by Mike Krzyzewski (Duke), Jim Boeheim (Syracuse), Roy Williams (North Carolina) and Bob Huggins (West Virginia).
BIG TEN CONSISTENCY
• Since Bo Ryan took over, Wisconsin has won five Big Ten titles - three regular season, two tournament (only Ohio State has more) and owns the top record in conference games, going 156-66 (.703). Ryan's .703 win percentage (156-66) is the highest in Big Ten history.
• The Badgers finished off their 14th-consecutive season with a winning conference record. In 108 years of Big Ten basketball, only one school has a longer streak of continuous success.
• During UW's streak of 14 straight winning seasons, every other Big Ten team has had multiple seasons with losing records, except Michigan State, which finished .500 twice in that span. Among the major conferences, only Kansas (24) has a longer active streak of above .500 seasons.
• Wisconsin has never finished lower than fourth in the Big Ten standings under Ryan. UW's active streak of 13 consecutive seasons in the Big Ten's top four is tied for the longest in league history.