Wisconsin 87, Samford 51: Balanced Badgers blast Bulldogs

This one was simply over from the very get go as Wisconsin opened up the game on an 8-0 run and never looked back in an 87-51 victory over the visiting Samford Bulldogs. With the non-conference schedule out of the way Wisconsin can now concentrate on a date with Penn State next Thursday to open up Big Ten conference play. 

Saturday was all about balance for the Badgers as 5 players managed to score in double figures, led by Frank Kaminsky's 16 points. Joining Kaminsky in double digits were Ryan Evans (14), Mike Bruesewitz (13), Sam Dekker (12), and Jared Berggren (10). 

With that things are changing up a bit in our recap coverage as we'll now be giving you a look at player grades and individual analysis more than the story of the game per say, so enjoy… 

 

Player Stats/Thoughts Grade
Ben Brust, G

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8pts, 4 rebounds, 6 assists, 3-6FG's, 

Brust didn't light it up from the field, but he had another solid basketball game and it's hard to argue the game he had wasn't good either. Sure, it wasn't another double-double, but can we really expect that out of him on a game by game basis when Big Ten play hits? 

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Mike Bruesewitz, F

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13pts, 4 rebounds, 6-7FG's, 2 steals, 3 assists, 25 min.

The Bruiser came back to the starting lineup in a big, big way to say the least.. Maybe he could've grabbed a few more boards, but anytime you get 13 points from Mike freaking Bruesewitz you take them and run. On Saturday afternoon there may have been only one other person hotter from the field, but we'll take 6-7 shooting from the mop-topped Bruesewitz all day. 

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Traevon Jackson, G

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4pts, 4-4FT's, 2 assists, 2 turnovers, 20 min.

Jackson was in there for his defense again, but if he keeps turning the ball over and making stupid mistakes like he did again today it's going to be really tough to live with his limited offensive ability at the moment. He's lucky he can play D or it would be bench city for the kid in my book. Can we try Fahey or something at PG to get good effort on both ends of the court?

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Ryan Evans, F

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14pts, 12 rebounds, 5-14FG's, 3 steals, 2TO's, 26 min.

Evans's double double was nice to see, but it's hard to take it with more than a grain of salt when it's against a team like Samford. However it was refreshing to see him have some confidence. We'd still like to see him be more efficient in his shooting as 5-14 isn't the greatest either. Overall a double double can't be beat though.

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Jared Berggren, F

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10pts, 9 rebounds, 4-6FG's, 4 blocks, 22 min.

Berggren's game was efficient to say the least and his defense was amazing too. There wasn't much that you could find fault with in his game as he did just about everything the coaching staff wanted him to do in his minutes on the floor.

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George Marshall, G 

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3pts, 4 assists, 1 rebound, 23min. 

Marshall played well on the offensive end of the floor, directing traffic well. However, another big time mental lapse sent him off the floor for an extended period and he can't have those mental lapses on that side of the court in Big Ten season or it'll really cost him minutes.

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Sam Dekker, F

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12pts, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, 4-8FG's, 19 min.

This might have been Dekker's most complete game to date. He drove hard to the basket, got his teammates involved, played some solid defense and didn't make was on fire from deep, hitting 3-4 treys. Overall a solid performance for just 19 minutes

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Frank Kaminsky, F

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16pts, 2 rebounds, 4-43pt FG, 6-7FG, 12 min.

Now this is the Kaminsky we were all waiting to see. He simply couldn't miss on the offensive end of the court and probably would've played more minutes had the UW lead not been so huge. Really there isn't anything he didn't do well in his minutes. Hard to argue with more points than minutes played.

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3 Takeaways:

- This was the perfect game to get Wisconsin back on track as this time of year is so strange with finals and long breaks between games. It was the most awake I have seen this team all season long and coming out and leading wire-to-wire was huge. 

-  Can we see more of that from Frank Kaminsky please? If we see even half of that on a consistent basis come Big Ten play Bucky will be in great shape.

- Defense continues to matter most in the point guard rotation as George Marshall helped on a play that didn't need help, left his guy wide open and the shot was drained. He was immediately pulled from the game in favor of Traevon Jackson. If UW has to rely on Jackson to play 25 or more minutes a game in Big Ten play that is not good news to say the least. If Marshall can get it together early in conference play on the defensive end that is the best case scenario to happen for this team because they are vastly better as a team on that end of the court with him at the point.

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Andrew Coppens

About Andrew Coppens

Andy is a member of the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) and has been covering college football for nearly half a decade. He is the Managing Editor of MadTownBadgers.com and associate editor of Bloguin's World Cup site, 32flags.com

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