Connect with us


Wisconsin Basketball vs. Purdue: Analytics Game Prediction



Wisconsin Badgers Basketball players Kamari McGee, John Blackwell, and Chucky Hepburn celebrate during the game vs. Rutgers at home.

If you missed my latest Wisconsin Basketball Predictions, find them here: Indiana | Illinois | Rutgers.

Let’s talk briefly about the First Half because that half was a continuation of what we’ve seen from this Wisconsin Basketball team since February. Sloppy ball control on offense led to a very poor NoT eFG% that overshadowed a good 3P shooting performance and a strong FTAR.

Those issues fed into a lackadaisical defensive effort where the same issues were present. Woeful performance getting over the top of ball screens, leading to easy mid-range jumpers. The one performance that needs to be commended was Steven Crowl’s. As opposed to the Indiana Game, he stuck to his principles not letting Omoruyi behind him for easy dump downs and lobs. Allowing, at least in the half-court, our off-ball defenders to stick on shooters. Limiting the issue to really strong Mid-Range Shooting from Rutgers.

That was the First Half, in the 2nd Half. The Nov-Jan Badgers showed up, and boy, was that a sight for sore eyes. The offense put up (by my charting) a RAW Offensive Efficiency of 126/100 Possessions versus the #7 Defense in the COUNTRY.


Everything was clicking. We shot it well (50% from 3P), we were getting to the FT Line (39% FTAR), crashing the offensive glass (27% OREB%), and best of all, they took care of the basketball with a 14% TO Rate down from 22% in the 1H. Defensively, some of the same issues still existed, but not for a 6-minute stretch where we went on a 19-2 run and sealed the game.

That 3-Guard Lineup of Chucky/McGee/Blackwell + Wahl & Crowl is by far the Wisconsin basketball team’s best defensive lineup against the P&R/Zoom Actions, and in limited run (17 Total Minutes & 27 Possessions), it is one of our best offensive lineups. In total, that lineup has a NET efficiency rating of +97.4!! That’s tallying an Offensive efficiency of 176.0/100 & a Defensive efficiency of 78.6/100.

Now, that Offensive efficiency is a bit inflated due to the low sample, but I don’t have ANY fear when looking at that Defensive efficiency number we’ll see much regression. I think it’s safe to say we’d all love for Greg Gard to ride that lineup giving Chucky & Storr decent rests around the Under 16:00-Under 8:00 Media’s. Ramping up the defensive intensity and never skipping a beat offensively.

That’s what we had Nov-Jan…and lost. Badger fans everywhere should be glad we’ve gotten that back.

With that, let’s dive into the Prediction Model for Sunday’s matchup vs. Purdue!!!

Wisconsin Basketball Prediction Model

First, let’s start off with what comprises my Prediction Model (See Below):


Gard Your Fickell’s Model | 66 Projected Possesions

KenPom Model | 66 Projected Possesions

Torvik T-Rank | ???

Haslam Metrics | 64.18 Projected Possions = (Projected Points / “Should” OEFF)


Wisconsin Basketball is at a Height advantage vs. Purdue, with an Average Height of 78.39 vs. 78.21 (inches). Razor Thin…

This Height “Factor” influences my DREB% Model but is only a part of the equation. Combining the overall Height advantage and the other Metrics listed in the Model (3PAR, FTAR, 2P%, 3P%, and OPP OREB%), I can then project out each team’s DREB%.


Based on all the combined metrics in the DREB% Model, Wisconsin Basketball is projected to lose the DREB% battle vs. Purdue, with an expectation of UW grabbing 71.32% of their Defensive Rebound opportunities in Sunday’s Matchup vs. an expectation that Purdue grabs 75.06% of their Defensive Rebound opportunities.

DREB% is arguably the 2nd most important individual metric in basketball and a huge component in “Stop Factor”, essentially my own Defensive Efficiency Metric. And with Zach Edey crashing the glass, although the Badgers are an ELITE DREB team, Purdue is just that strong of an OREB team. This is the battle we need to watch, and all 5 need to close out possessions vs. Purdue. Transition opportunities will drop —> Zero, but if we can achieve a DREB% >75%, we’ll have a shot!


Wisconsin basketball is also projected to lose the Stop Factor advantage, coming in at a projected 1.31 Stop Factor to Purdue’s 1.53.

For those unfamiliar with Stop Factor, it’s looking at a Team’s ability to be efficient on Defense.

That can come in various ways:

  • Low eFG% given up to your opponent
  • Forcing a lot of turnovers
  • Collecting a high % of Defensive Rebounds available.

A Stop Factor over 2 is really good, or in Rutgers’ case, indicative of a truly brutal offense and NoT eFG%!

Score Prediction | Model Table | EFF Ranks:

Final Thoughts on Wisconsin Badgers vs. Purdue

That 2nd Half and the spark we get from Kamari McGee that allows Chucky to maintain is level of play for 100% of his minutes on the court. Has been something I’ve been talking about for a while, and while I want to caution against confirmation bias Rutgers provided me. I still hold that analysis to be true.

Let’s hope I’m right because even a strong outperformance to the analytics might end up in an L. A 9.39-Point Gap per 100 Possessions is a lot to overcome.

The “OTHER” Analysts:

KenPom: 70 – 81

Torvik: 69 – 81

Haslammetrics: 68.46 – 81.03

EvanMiya: 67.8 – 80.5

Gard Your Fickell: 74.74 – 80.93

I’ve got us as much closer dogs vs. Purdue. But still underdogs.

The biggest area that I see a reasonable chance to outperform the analytics is in DREB%; if Wisconsin basketball can maintain its DREB%’s or only lose 1-4%, not 7-8%, we’ll be right in it to end this game! That will require all 5 on the Defensive Glass for 40 Minutes Sunday. Do we have the discipline to do so?

We’ll find out in less than 24 Hours.

On Wisconsin!

Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to read our work at For more Wisconsin Badgers Athletics and Big Ten content, follow us on Twitter & Facebook. You can also subscribe to our YouTube Channel. You can also follow me on Twitter @GardYourFickell

Also, be sure to check out our shop, subscribe to our newsletter, and the BadgerNotes After Dark podcast, which is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and all other streaming platforms. Because of your support, we have become one of the fastest-growing independent media outlets focused on giving a voice to the fans!

Gard Your Fickell is a leading authority on Wisconsin Badgers analytics, specializing in dissecting the intricate data behind football and basketball. With a deep passion for the game and an analytical mindset, Gard Your Fickell offers readers a unique perspective on the Badgers performance.