Wednesday, December 9, 2009

UW-Green Bay thoughts

I turned 34 today, and as far as birthday presents go, tonight's game was on par with a gift certificate for a discounted colonoscopy. Which I'll probably receive several birthdays from now.

Let me lead with something I wrote in the aftermath of the win over Duke:

So many of the national stories in the wake of last night's games had a theme along the lines of "Never doubt Bo Ryan ... the Badgers will definitely make the NCAA Tournament ... they're a Big Ten title contender." I appreciate the sentiment but think that we might be getting ahead of ourselves. There are a lot of games left to play.

The bold is newly added, and I'm sorely disappointed that I had to bring up that passage just two games after that seminal win a week ago. But tonight showed that Wisconsin is far from a finished product.

Green Bay may turn out to be a tournament-caliber team, but thus far this season they have losses to UAB and Long Beach State under their belts, with no wins of note before tonight. They're a veteran team that has some decent guards, but there's no real polite way of saying this: this is a bad loss for the Badgers.

It started early, when Green Bay seemingly made every shot they took, especially Bryquis Perine. They ended up shooting less than 50% somehow, but still scored 88 points, and grabbed a ton of offensive rebounds on the rare occasions they did miss. It felt like all five of GB's starters had career games tonight.

We turned the ball over almost 20 times, when Duke could only force us to cough it up five times.

Wait a minute -- UW-Green Bay scored 88 points on the Badgers? Good lord.

Offensively, where was Jason Bohannon? He took four shots tonight. Troy Cotton managed to hoist up 13 for GB, Rahmon Fletcher 16, Perine 20. Our best shooter took four.

Trevon Hughes kept us close by getting fouled 154 times and wearing out a path to the free throw line, and Jon Leuer played well, too. But when the Badgers score 84 points -- 75 in regulation -- there's no way in hell they should lose to a Horizon League team. That was some god-awful defense from the fellas in red tonight.

You know, if we're going to lose a game we weren't expecting to, I'd rather it be to a local program like Green Bay and not, say, Oakland. My earlier snarkiness aside, I've always hoped the Phoenix would return to the glory they experienced during the Dick Bennett days, those were exciting. It would be great if they ran the Horizon and made this loss look not quite so bad.

But right now, it feels pretty bad. Not exactly a momentum-builder heading into the Marquette game.


Anonymous said...

worst birthday ever?

Anonymous said...

You gotta feel better now after the Marquette win.