A big reason why the Wisconsin Badgers have made it into the 2014 Final Four is the way they prepare for games. Not just the video preparation, but the way the scout team helps the starters and role players get ready for each game. Bo Ryan knows, however, that preparing for the Kentucky Wildcats poses a big problem.
Big as in the length of their players. Kentucky’s backcourt of the Harrison twins, Aaron and Andrew, and James Young are all 6-6. Wisconsin’s guards of Traevon Jackson, Ben Brust and Josh Gasser stand at 6-2, 6-1 and 6-3, respectively.
Bo Ryan would love nothing more than to steal a page from Inspector Gadget for his scout team to prepare for Kentucky:
Same reasons with a lot of other teams that we play, it’s hard to simulate that, but our scout team tries to — you know, we just ask them to be like go-go-Gadget, our scout players. If your arms go this far, then get them to go this far or get them to go this far. So that’s how we ask them to play to simulate the length.
At the same token, coach Ryan knows how valuable his scout team and assistant coaches are to this program:
We do what we do. We have the other team simulate their cuts, their reads, their tendencies, and the assistants have done an unbelievable job with that. Our scout team has been so dedicated, and they take a lot of pride in what they do.
With how talented this scout team is and how well they have helped the Wisconsin Badgers prepare all season long, Kentucky is just one of those teams that is difficult to prepare for. Bo Ryan went as far to say that “we can’t simulate Kentucky.”
There’s no doubting that John Calipari has done a phenomenal job with this young Kentucky team. With the new version of the Fab 5, the Wildcats went through some growing pains during the course of the season. But after losing 61-60 in the SEC championship game to eventual overall number one seed Florida, Kentucky has made a remarkable run into the Final Four.
Bo Ryan might not have go-go-Gadget arms on his scout team, but there’s no doubt they will have this Badgers squad as prepared as can be on Saturday. Just keep an eye out for the evil Doctor Claw.