This latest loss for the Wisconsin Badgers is a tough one to take.
The Badgers just ended a three-game winning streak Saturday when they beat the Purdue Boilermakers at Mackey Arena, a place they hardly ever win. Things were starting to look up again for Wisconsin as many fans were hoping they were going to go on another nice winning streak.
And then the Northwestern Wildcats came to town. The same Wildcats who generally finish at or near the bottom of the Big Ten. The same Wildcats who got run out of their own gym in the conference opener by these same Badgers. And it was these same Wildcats that shocked the basketball world by upsetting the Badgers 65-56 at the Kohl Center.
What a difference four weeks makes.
Losing to the Indiana Hoosiers was bothersome, but it was on the road in a hostile environment at Assembly Hall. The Badgers next loss came at the hands of the Michigan Wolverines, who now sit atop the Big Ten alone. The Minnesota Golden Gophers also pulled off an upset a week ago in Williams Arena.
Those three losses, although tough to take, were a major bump in the road but hey that‘s Big Ten life right? This last one to Northwestern however leaves a bad taste in my mouth for various reasons.
Wisconsin shot colder than the weather in Madison. Not one player shot over 50% Wednesday night. Ben Brust may have been the leading scorer with 21 points, but he only shot 38.9% from the floor. The Badgers as a team shot just 26.3%, taking 57 shots and only connecting on 15 of them.
You would also think the Badgers would use this game to spring-board them to the end of the regular season and into the conference tournament. Coming off three straight losses the Badgers were able to get a victory over Purdue and Northwestern was supposed to be just what the doctor ordered to start another winning streak. No offense Northwestern fans, but your team is generally not good. This was Wisconsin’s chance to gain even more confidence heading into their showdown with Ohio State on Saturday.
Now the Badgers have to really regroup and find out how to fix this and fast. Hopefully this embarrassing loss wakes up this team and they can end this regular season on a strong note.