The Wisconsin basketball team always seems to be a tough group to figure out when it comes to previewing the team. In the 2019-20 season, I was ranking the Badgers down towards the bottom of the conference. That year Wisconsin finished in a tie for first place in the conference, finishing with a record of 21-10 (14-6). With Greg Gard returning most of his talent in 2020-21, ranking Wisconsin at the top of the conference only felt right. The season did not finish the way they wanted, finishing 18-13 (10-10). Coming into the 2021-22 season, the same feeling hits as it did for the 2019-20 season.
Wisconsin basketball has a lot of questions that need answering when looking at the roster and potential playing time for the upcoming season. Here are some of the few things that you can expect from the Badgers in 2021-22.
Davis, Wahl, and Davison Lead the Way
With Wisconsin losing four of their top seven scorers from a year ago, Greg Gard will be looking for some guys to step up. Jonathan Davis, Tyler Wahl, and Brad Davison all come back to Madison, being the only three on the roster that played meaningful minutes a season ago. Davison is a fifth-year senior who brings leadership and toughness every time he steps on the floor. Jonathan Davis is a young, rising sophomore who will be a major key in the offensive attack for Wisconsin Basketball this season. Lastly, Tyler Wahl is a junior who played great minutes for Greg Gard last season but should see more opportunities on the offensive end than he did last year.
Wisconsin Basketball Searches For Minutes Coming Into 2021-22
If you are a Wisconsin basketball fan, looking at the roster for this season, there is no surprise there is a lot of questions. The topic of how players will do stepping into a bigger role is probably a discussion that the coaching staff is having a lot this off-season. Outside of the big three that the Badgers return, no returning player hit over 10 minutes per game in 2020-21 besides incoming Wake Forest transfer, Jahcobi Neath. One player that will see more minutes, and potentially a starting role when the season rolls around is sophomore, Ben Carlson. Carlson only appeared in seven games due to an injury but showed a presence in the rotation in his time played. If he can stay healthy, Carlson will be a huge presence in the post next season and in the future for Wisconsin basketball.
2021 Recruiting Class/Transfers
The Wisconsin coaching staff brings in a top-five recruiting class in the Big-Ten, highlighted by 3-star PG Chucky Hepburn. A ton of potential comes to Madison this season from high school and the transfer portal. Here is the rest of the recruiting class and pickups from the transfer portal.
2021 Recruiting Class
- Markus IIver– 3-star, 6-8/195lbs, PF
- Matthew Mors- 3-star, 6-7/220lbs, PF
- Chris Hodges- 3-star, 6-8/235lbs, PF
- Chris Vogt- Cincinnati, 7-1/260lbs, C
- Isaac Lindsey- UNLV, 6-4/190lbs, SG
- Jahcobi Neath- Wake Forest, 6-3/200lbs, PG
Prediction for 2021-22 Season
When it comes down to it, there will be a lot of things that need to be figured out for Wisconsin this season. Losing a very talented senior class makes this upcoming season a rebuilding year if you want to put it that way. Only three returning players have valuable playing time, which makes it take time to get in the swing of things. With the talent of teams like Purdue, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Maryland, and Illinois seem to be all in better spots than Wisconsin. If I had to throw out a prediction today, the Badgers will finish ninth in the Big Ten in 2021-22.