Wisconsin Outruns North Dakota: Frank Kaminsky Dominates


Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

The Badgers haven’t scored 100 points in a game since 1995.

On Tuesday night the Badgers accomplished the feat again, for the first time ever at the Kohl Center in front of the home crowd.

The No. 12 Wisconsin Badgers defeated North Dakota 103-85 and were led by the ridiculous scoring outburst by junior center Frank Kaminsky. From the beginning Kaminsky was hot and he would not cool off until he hit the showers.

Essentially North Dakota was the lamb and Kaminsky was the slaughter.

Kaminsky ended the game with a school-record 43 points as he went 16-19 from the field. That’s right; Kaminsky is the Badgers’ all-time leader in single-game points above the likes of Alando Tucker, Devin Harris, Michael Finley and all others. Bo Ryan surely enjoyed Kaminsky’s game and gave him one more possession at the end of the game for a chance at the record. Kaminsky didn’t miss.

The most impressive part? Kaminsky scored his 43 points in only 28 minutes. To put that in perspective he scored over 1.53 points-per-minute when he was on the court.

Let that soak in.

The impressive part for the Badgers is that they didn’t even impose their will and slow down North Dakota’s game in order to win. Instead, Wisconsin decided to play the fast break game with North Dakota, which always plays a fast-paced game – North Dakota won their season opener 110-69. Not only could the Badgers keep up with and compete with North Dakota’s fast-break offense, they outplayed North Dakota at their own game.

The offensive theme of the night for the Badgers was someone would drive into the lane, the defense would collapse and the ball would be kicked out to Kaminsky for a three point attempt. Six times Kaminsky let the ball out of his hands from behind the three-point line and six times the bench jumped in excitement as he went 6-6 from three-point land.

"“I can’t really describe it,” Kaminsky said, “It’s an awesome feeling. Looking back on the game now and being able to see the stats and everything, it just was an awesome game.”"

It sure was.

It wasn’t all Kaminsky though, as a team Wisconsin shot 59.3% from the field on the game and 60%on three pointers. Those are impressive numbers that will win most games, but when put up at home? That’s pretty much a guaranteed win.

The Badgers’ other star Sam Dekker was the main man drawing the defense to him and then dishing to Kaminsky and he ended up tying his career-high mark of four assists on the day. Dekker also chipped in a quiet 19 points in the campaign but was rightly overshadowed by Kaminsky’s performance.

North Dakota rebounded evenly with the Badgers as both squads ended with 31 boards on the night. This was a quality win over good opponent despite the fact that Wisconsin (Kaminsky) torched them. North Dakota is expected to compete for the Big Sky Conference championship.

That makes the Badgers’ 4-0 start even more impressive because they haven’t played one team that anyone can say for sure will not make the NCAA tournament. The Badgers also proved that they can run the court and keep up with fast teams that want to fast break. That should give Bo Ryan immense confidence that the Badgers can compete with anyone and any style of play as the year goes on.

Game Ball: I think it’s quite obvious…

What This Means: The Badgers are 4-0 and should have all of the confidence in the world that they can compete with anyone in the country. Kaminsky just grew up from a solid player to a star and should command extra respect from opponents the rest of the year from this game alone.

Dark Spot: Kaminsky missed three shots. He could have gone 19-19 but he regretfully messed up his opportunity for perfection. Kidding. I see no dark spot to this game despite the fact that the Badgers let North Dakota score 85 points but I’m not here to nit-pick, it was a hell of a game.

Looking Forward: Thursday Nov. 21 the No. 12 Badgers (4-0) welcome the Bowling Green Falcons (1-1) to the Kohl Center at 7:00 PM CT on ESPN3. 4-0 feels good but 5-0 will feel even better, don’t let your foot off the gas Bucky and lose a game you should easily win.

How about one more round of applause for “Frank the Tank.”