Nov. 15, 2013
MADISON, Wis. -- Despite suffering just their fourth loss of the season on Wednesday in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten tournament, the Badgers are in a position they have not been in for nearly two decades.
With the NCAA tournament selection show slated for Monday, head coach John Trask and his players will patiently await an announcement that Wisconsin has waited 18 years for: a berth in the Big Dance.
Following a regular-season in which the team won 13 games for the first time since winning the national title in 1995, UW will look to make its sixth appearance in the NCAA tournament since the program’s inception in 1977.
“To see a group of 13 (seniors) realize their dreams as student-athletes here at Wisconsin … and to see these guys not only come in second place but I think have a good shot of getting an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament,” Trask said, “it’s a really exciting time for my staff and the players involved with this program.”
The Badgers battled their way to a second-place finish in the Big Ten by beating a pair of ranked conference foes in Michigan State and Northwestern, while also owning an unbeaten home mark and the nation’s longest active home unbeaten streak in the country (13).
With an RPI ranking of 29 prior to Wednesday’s match, UW will hope its strength of schedule and home success impresses the NCAA committee enough to grant the team an opening-round home match.
Regardless of the venue or the opponent, the Badgers are just happy to be in the driver’s seat for what they hope is a deep postseason run.
“I still believe there’s a lot more in this team,” Trask said. “I think there’s another 15 percent in this team, and hopefully they’re going to have an opportunity to prove it on down the line as these games get bigger and bigger and bigger.”
The NCAA tournament selection show is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. CT on Monday.
NCAA.com will provide a live stream of the selections as all 48 participants are announced.