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ESPN Wisconsin Blogs - Zach Heilprin

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Badgers basketball: UW adds second recruit for class of 2015

Sep 21, 2014 -- 11:33am
Photo/Shaymus McLaughlin/Herald-Review
 
MADISON - The University of Wisconsin bolstered their class of 2015 on Saturday with the commitment of power forward Alex Illikainen. 
 

 

Originally from Grand Rapids, Minnesota, Illikainen currently plays for Brewster Academy in New Hampshire.
 
The 6-foot-9, 210-pound, Illikainen chose the Badgers over offers from Minnesota, Iowa, Maryland, California, Indiana and others.
 
A four-star recruit according to ESPN, he is rated as the No. 21 power forward in the country and the 95th best player overall.
 
His AAU team, Howard Pulley in Minnesota, has sent a number of players to the Badgers, including Kammron Taylor, Jordan Taylor, Jared Berggren and Joe Krabbenhoft.
 
Illikainen is the second member of the 2015 class, joining DePere guard Brevin Pritzl.
 
Some highlights:
 

Badgers football: Highlights from UW's win over Bowling Green

Sep 20, 2014 -- 10:24pm

Badgers basketball: UW has the best offense in the country?

Sep 19, 2014 -- 4:39pm
 
MADISON - This is new.
 
Long known for their defense, even if it wasn’t up to Bo Ryan’s normal levels last season, the University of Wisconsin is now being lauded for their offense. In fact, ESPN’s John Gasaway says the Badgers have the best offense in the country heading into the 2014-2015 season.
 
 
1. Wisconsin Badgers
 
Bo Ryan's team didn't even have the best offense in the Big Ten last season, much less in the country. How can I pick the Badgers as No. 1 in the nation on that side of the ball for 2014-15? Here's my thinking...
 
Wisconsin will rarely turn the ball over this season. We know that in advance because, well, Wisconsin hardly ever turns the ball over. In Big Ten play last season the Badgers gave the ball away on just 12 percent of their possessions.
 
I also suspect this will again be a perimeter-oriented offense, just as it was last season (launching 39 percent of its field goal attempts from beyond the arc in conference play). And I have to wonder whether a team that shot 75 percent at the free throw line in Big Ten action might be able to do a little better than 35 percent on its 3s this time around. Ben Brust will be missed, sure, but I expect Sam Dekker to improve on last season's 33 percent accuracy from deep.
 
Lastly, these Wisconsin guys get to the line (a new wrinkle in Madison). Dekker, Frank Kaminsky, Traevon Jackson and (especially) Nigel Hayes -- each draws at least four fouls per 40 minutes. Only Iowa (barely) posted a higher free throw rate in Big Ten play last season.
 
The rest of the top 10 looks like this:
2) Duke
3) Kentucky
4) Kansas
5) Wichita State
6) Villanova
7) Arizona
8) Iowa State
9) Virginia
10) BYU

Badgers basketball: Student section sold out in 5 minutes

Sep 17, 2014 -- 9:56am
 
MADISON - That didn’t take long.
 
Student tickets for the University of Wisconsin basketball team went on sale at 7 a.m. Wednesday morning and were gone within five minutes.
 
 
It’s the 10th time in the last 13 years that the 2,100 seats in the student section have been completely sold out.
 
The speed in which the tickets were gone shouldn’t come as a surprise. After a trip to the Final Four last April, and four starters returning from that team, UW is expected to start the season in the top 5 of the national polls.
 

Badgers football: Kickoff time for South Florida announced

Sep 15, 2014 -- 9:20pm
 
MADISON - Another kickoff time for the University of Wisconsin was set on Monday.
 
Officials announced the Badgers non-conference game with South Florida on Sept. 27 will start at 11 a.m. and be broadcast on ESPN2.
 
It’ll be the third-straight game at Camp Randall Stadium with the late morning start time.
 
 
Date
Opponent
Location
Time / Result
08/30/14
vs. LSU 
Houston, Texas
L, 28-24
09/06/14
vs. Western Illinois 
Camp Randall Stadium
W, 37-3
09/20/14
vs. Bowling Green
Camp Randall Stadium
11:00 a.m. CT
09/27/14
vs. South Florida 
Camp Randall Stadium
11:00 a.m. CT
10/04/14
at Northwestern *
Evanston, Ill.
TBA
10/11/14
vs. Illinois *
Camp Randall Stadium
TBA
10/25/14
vs. Maryland *
Camp Randall Stadium
11:00 a.m. CT
11/01/14
at Rutgers *
Piscataway, N.J.
11:00 a.m. CT
11/08/14
at Purdue *
West Lafayette, Ind.
TBA
11/15/14
vs. Nebraska *
Camp Randall Stadium
TBA
11/22/14
at Iowa *
Iowa City, Iowa
TBA
11/29/14
vs. Minnesota *
Camp Randall Stadium
TBA
12/06/14
Big Ten Championship 
Indianapolis, Ind.
TBA

 

Badgers football: Idle UW sees movement in the polls

Sep 14, 2014 -- 2:23pm
 
MADISON - The University of Wisconsin had the week off but still saw some movement in the national polls released Sunday.
 
In the Amway Coaches poll the Badgers came in at No. 17, while they dropped one spot to No. 19 in the Associated Press poll.
 
The Big Ten still has four teams in the poll, with Michigan State at No. 11 in both the AP poll and the coaches’ poll. Following their blowout win over Akron, Ohio State dropped one spot to No. 23 in AP poll and stayed at No. 18 in the coaches’ poll. And Nebraska, which took care of Fresno State to move to 3-0 on the year, reappeared in the AP poll at No. 24 and moved down one spot to No. 22 in the coaches’ poll.
 
Only one Big Ten team, Penn State, is in the receiving votes category for either poll.  
 
You can find both polls here.
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