Sunday, February 25, 2007

Losing streak

Unlike the pathetic contest with Michigan State, it's tough to sit back and instantly know what went wrong with this one.

Well, one obvious thing was having Kam Taylor at the free-throw line with a possibility to change a one-point lead in the dying seconds of the game to a three-point lead, only to have him miss the first shot of a one-and-one. The Badgers weren't doing great from the line to begin with (they didn't get there very much in the first place) but with a senior on one of the top teams in the nation, who has the sixth-best free throw percentage in the conference ... you just HAVE to make that shot.

This game was memorable for a lot of reasons. It was officiated very loosely; the referees "let 'em play," that's for sure. Greg Oden committed about twelve fouls and was actually called for three, which in my book means the game was called really fairly. (Seriously ... he didn't get away with as much as he usually did. Hell, they called him for a travel on a pivotal possession! What more can you ask for?) Then we had several replays of Brian Butch's injured elbow, a nice shot of Joe Krabbenhoft picking his contact lens off of the court and putting it in his mouth, then Thad Matta doing the same thing with a piece of gum. Jason Bohannon went off while the nation watched -- he'll ably fill the hole that Kammron Taylor leaves when he graduates.

So, the game ended with a blocked shot after a pretty finger-roll by Mike Conley, and the Badgers have now lost two in a row. It's funny; this is possibly the best team Wisconsin's ever fielded, and they're not even going to win the conference.

A Florida loss keeps some hope for a one-seed alive, and the Big Ten Tournament title is still definitely within reach. But this is a bad penultimate regular-season game result, and now the Badgers will have to go where they're going without Brian Butch's services.

So, now we sit and wait, and hopefully beat Michigan State at home. Hopefully there's some fun left for the Wisconsin Badgers this season.

(If you want to relive the game, the Capital Times has a liveblog up.)


John said...

The Badgers are running the offense so slow they will not go very far in this tournament. Can someone please kick the offense in the butt so they move, with or without the ball. Get Stiemsma in the starting lineup and rotate Taylor more with the freshman. Play him till he fouls out so he learns. And tell Landry to drive like his brother, do you even want to play NBA? This is it people, get it together and play ball. I don't pay for these expensive tickets for nothing!!!

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