Though Mike Bruesewitz may look like Ronald McDonald with his red “wig” he was actually not a McDonald’s All-American, as Ryan pointed out at media day. Bruesewitz, who made a name for himself with his huge three to beat Kansas State in the NCAA Tournament, will need to take that major step from being a role player to a 30-minute a game type of player. In Wisconsin’s system of stretching the floor, setting screens and shooting threes, the now hairless Bruesewitz will have to contribute if the Badgers are to remain competitive.
The surprise sensation last year was freshman guard Josh Gasser, who started 30 of 34 games and posted the first ever triple double in Wisconsin with 10 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists at Northwestern last January. He also banked in a buzzer beater to avoid an upset at Michigan. But will Gasser have a sophomore slump? Will he be able to shoulder some of Taylor’s scoring load? The 6-6 Ryan Evans and the 6-4 Rob Wilson will also vie for a starting spot at the 2-guard position. A couple of young guards, George Marshall from Chicago and Traevon Jackson from Ohio, might soon make up one of the most athletic backcourts in Wisconsin history, but for now they will have the chance to learn from Taylor. Look for the Badgers to try out a few different starting fives before Ryan settles on one rotation.
The Wisconsin Badgers are extremely well-coached, and have one of the best leaders on the floor in Jordan Taylor. Their system relies on role players who can stretch the floor, shoot consistently, and defend. Once they figure out their seven or eight-man rotation, and who their go-to big guys will be, look for Wisconsin to be right back in the thick of the Big Ten race this season.
How good is Taylor? How deep in March will the Badgers go?
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