Monday, January 15, 2007

Badger basketball team ascends to #2

Thanks are due to the Virginia Tech Hokies, who, in upsetting North Carolina, set the stage for the Badgers to continue to climb to heights they've never seen before. They're officially second in the nation, according to the AP, and the target on the team's collective back is getting larger as the weeks wear on.

The Badgers succeeded this week by riding Kam Taylor to victory. His performance was noted by the Big Ten, and he is currently the reigning Big Ten Player of the Week. Congrats to Kam.

The game against Northwestern was ugly. I don't have to tell you that. Basketball's a weird game; the three-point victory over OSU looked a lot more decisive than the six-point victory over Northwestern. The Wildcats just wouldn't go away; they capitalized on a lot of Wisconsin miscues, including a particularly ugly sequence to end the first half. Apparently, some members of the press were trying to call this a "moral victory" for Northwestern, and as this Wildcat columnist says, that tag is just inappropriate when you're close to getting an ACTUAL victory
instead. (And, by the way, Chris West sensed that the Wildcats would mean trouble for the Badgers.)

In hockey, the Badger defense showed up on Saturday, but there was no offense to be found as they split the series with Minnesota on the wrong end of a one-goal shutout. I watched the game half-interestedly at the bar on Saturday ("the sound was off, but I think I got the gist of it") while taking in the Eagles-Saints game. Whether my torpor was a result of the numbing effect the Colts-Ravens game left on me or the libations consumed during the game is anyone's guess. Anyway, the Badger Backer did watch the game, paying close attention, so see what he says right here.

In other news: the House Rock Built is grateful for the Badgers' Capitol One Bowl victory; Forbes says that the Wisconsin football team is the 15th-most valuable college team in the nation; and if you ever wonder why we only hear about the negative off-the-field incidents perpetrated by college athletes, this guy's got the perfect antidote.