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Wisconsin Basketball News: Losing Streak Continues, New Target, More



Wisconsin Badgers Basketball head coach Greg Gard
Jan 10, 2023; Madison, Wisconsin, USA; Wisconsin Badgers head coach Greg Gard yells to his players during the second half against the Michigan State Spartans at the Kohl Center. Mandatory Credit: Kayla Wolf-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a busy week for the Wisconsin basketball program, ladies and gents, but fear not because BadgerNotes can help get you back up to speed with a roundup of some important news you may have missed. 

Wisconsin Basketball Drops Three Straight Games 

After a 3-0 start in Big Ten play, Wisconsin basketball has now dropped three straight games without their best player, Tyler Wahl.

It’s no secret Wisconsin looks like an entirely different team without Wahl in the lineup (obviously), averaging under 60 points per game during the skid. But it’s the defensive end where his absence has been the most glaring.

With Wahl in the lineup, the Badgers held opponents to 61.2 points per game. Without him? Opposing teams averaged 70.3 points per game and 48% shooting from the field.

That said, the sky is hardly falling in Madison.

Roughly a week and a half ago, Wisconsin basketball was undefeated in league play and ranked No. 14 in the country after being picked to finish 9th in the preseason by media pundits.

Yes, this team needs its “big three” healthy to compete for a double-bye in the Big Ten tournament, but show me a team that loses its best player and doesn’t miss a beat. I’ll hang up and listen.

Rumor has it Wahl will be back in the lineup on Tuesday when the Badgers take on Penn State.

Wisconsin Basketball Showing Interest in 2024 Sharpshooter

Last week, Wisconsin basketball became the latest Power 5 program showing interest in 2024 three-star shooting guard Cole Certa out of Bloomington, Illinois.

“Coach [Dean] Oliver is recruiting me; he came to my game on Friday night,” Certa told BadgerNotes. “I’ve watched UW basketball all my life and love how they play. They [Wisconsin] play hard and do it the right way – I’ve seen them have a lot of success with guys who have a similar game to mine.”

According to 247Sports, Certa is the No. 36 SG in the country and the No. 7 player in Illinois.

Already considered one of the best shooters in the Midwest, Certa currently holds offers from Bradley, Illinois State, Drake, Southern Illinois, Loyola Northwestern, Penn State, and Rice. 

The three-star SG plans to visit UW in the coming month.

Wisconsin Basketball Rotation Depth is Razor-Thin

Because of Tyler Wahl’s injury, head coach Greg Gard has played several inexperienced bodies outside the regular rotation.

With Carter Gilmore shifting into the starting lineup, Markus Ilver, Chris Hodges, and Isaac Lindsey have all seen extended playing time. To varying degrees of success.

“Some guys aren’t maybe quite ready, and they’re having to learn and adjust and grow really fast, maybe a little uncomfortably fast,” Gard said.

Gilmore has proven to be a serviceable forward. And once Wahl returns, he will provide some much-needed stability to the bench. But in my opinion, nobody other than Lindsey has forced their way into a more prominent role moving forward. And even his role should be marginal.

Guys like Ilver, Hodges, and Kamari McGee still need time before they become reliable contributors.

Wisconsin basketball will need a clean bill of health to make a run in 2022-23 because we’ve now seen the rotation depth is razor-thin.

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