Saturday, March 23, 2013

A few thoughts from Bucky's meltdown

That was not a nice way for the Badgers to go out yesterday, scoring 46 points and getting upset by Mississippi (aka, a state Scott Walker wants us to emulate). Shoot under 26%, and it's pretty damn hard to win. And when you look at the Badgers' games from this year, this stat jumps out at you.

Badgers scored 60 points or more: 21-2
Badgers scored under 60 points: 2-10

I know Nate Silver talks about if something is signal or noise. I think that split inlcudes plenty of sample size to show that 60 points is a signal. Sure makes you wish Vander Blue hadn't backed out of his commitment to UW and gone to Marquette instead, doesn't it?

People say "defense wins championships", but you also gotta score. You can't advance in March expecting to win 55-50. This held true even in the Badgers miracle run to the 2000 Final Four, where Dick Bennett-coached teams scored at least 60 in all four of their wins on the way to Indy.

So what do we do about it? It does seem like the talent will upgrade, especially now that Sam Dekker will be the main guy next year (and Bo can't go with his excuse of having the seniors play over him, regardless of talent). Get a contributor up front along with Dekker, and Bucky should be very good in the next couple of years, with Gasser, Jackson and Brust all back to play guard. And more play-making ability in that group as well, particularly since Gasser will do more ball-handling, allowing Jackson to create and spot-up shoot more (he's got the confidence, the decision-making is still a bit shaking with Tre).

But the lack of talent always seem to catch up to these guys at some point, and it just happened sooner than usual this time. The defense is there for UW, but it's offense and playmaking that needs to pick up next year.

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