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Wisconsin Basketball: 3 Keys to a Badgers Victory vs. Ohio State

Here’s how Wisconsin basketball can take down Ohio State and snap the four-game losing streak.



Wisconsin basketball; Badgers point guard Chucky Hepburn
Wisconsin guard Chucky Hepburn (23) is greeted by head each Greg Gard during the second half of their game Friday, January 26, 2024 at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wisconsin. Wisconsin beat Michigan State 81-66.

Now at a losing streak of four games, Wisconsin Badgers basketball returns home tonight (Tuesday) to take on the Ohio State Buckeyes. UW took the first meeting in Columbus on January 10 71-60. The Buckeyes beat Maryland 79-75 in double overtime on Saturday and sit with a record of 14-10 and 4-9 in the Big Ten.

Wisconsin basketball needs something to go their way and something to feel good about as we enter the last few weeks of conference play. Does that start tonight? Tip time is 8 PM on Peacock. Here are the keys to victory against Ohio State.

Wisconsin Basketball Needs to Keep an Eye on Jamison Battle

The third member of Ohio State’s trio is Jamison Battle. The Wisconsin Badgers are all too familiar with him as he spent the last two seasons with Minnesota.

In the first game, Battle got hot from three early, but did not do much in the second half.. Still, Battle is a 43% three point shooter and can score buckets in a hurry.

I would expect AJ Storr to take the assignment of Battle. He has to know where he is at all times. With how much attention will be on Thornton and Gayle Jr, Battle is not a player you want to forget about.

Bruce Thornton/Roddy Gayle Jr vs Chucky Hepburn/Max Klesmit

Just like the first meeting, I think whichever teams wins the guards matchup will win this game. Max Klesmit hada  second half to remember in Columbus with 18 second half points. Wisconsin basketball doesn’t win that game without him. Chucky Hepburn was great on Bruce Thornton in the second half of that game.

Thornton and Gayle Jr are a lot of what the Buckeyes wants to center thier offense around. Thornton is a great jump shooter and Gayle Jr will be the most athletic player on the court not named AJ Storr. It will be important for the Badgers to contain this duo.

Who Takes Charge and Leadership on This Wisconsin Basketball Team?

There’s no doubt this Wisconsin basketball team is reeling right now. What they’re doing or have tried to do over the last two weeks has not worked at all. They are struggling to score points and they are in complete shambles on the defensive side.

I think in order for this losing streak to end, they have to get back to the basics of Wisconsin basketball. Take care of the ball and win on defense. The last few games the Badgers have coughed the ball up early and have put themselves in a hole almost right away.

The offense will come back if this team puts themselves in good situations. When the Badgers were taking care of the ball and getting after it on defense, they played more loose and more freely. That resulted in scoring 70+ points as often as they did. This is an Ohio State team that will likely miss the NCAA Tournament a second straight year. It’s time for the Wisconsin Badgers to get back to doing what they do best.

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Dylan began as a staff writer for Badger Notes in August 2023. He has written about Wisconsin Badger Football and Men's Basketball since May 2020. Dylan's work has been featured on Yard Barker, NewsBreak, and Bleacher Reports