The Wisconsin Badgers have so far accomplished every goal they had set almost a year ago after they lost to Kentucky in the Final Four. The next item on that list, get revenge against the Wildcats and make it to the Nation Championship Game. Even though Bo Ryan's Badgers are the definition of a team, Saturday's game will have many intriguing individual match up battles to keep an eye on.
By now, if you don't know that Kentucky is undefeated, then you might be living under a rock somewhere. Kentucky is stacked throughout their lineup with size, including 5 guys contributors that are at least 6'9". Compare that to Wisconsin's team, who has just 4 guys who play who are at least 6'7". Size has been Kentucky's strength this season, but what happens when they meet a team that is able to go almost just as big with them?
Match up to Watch: Frank Kaminsky vs. Willie Cauley-Stein
In what could be one of the most exciting one on one match ups this entire season, both big men control the game on different ends of the court. Frank Kaminsky has turned into an offensive juggernaut after having breakout games in last year's NCAA Tournament, the same tournament that Cauley-Stein did not take part in because of an injury.
Frank, the Big Ten Conference player of the year, has scored 20 points or more in every game so far this tournament, and will need to do so again if the Badgers want to ruin Kentucky's so far perfect season. Kaminsky is scoring an average of 18.7 points per game, along with grabbing 8 rebounds and dishing out 2.7 assists per game. Part of Frank's ability to score at will, has come from his ability to move very much like a guard along the three point line shooting 41.5 percent on the year. Kaminsky takes it to another level by using his quick guard like feet down low in the post, matching it with his arsenal of shot fakes, Kaminsky finds plenty of different ways to score.
Willie Cauley-Stein on the other hand has become a defensive force field inside the paint for the Wildcats, averaging 6.5 rebounds, 1.2 steals, and 1.7 blocks per game this season. Cauley-Stein's presence down low has altered how teams look to score against Kentucky, with his 7 foot size, he is able to force opponents into taking terrible shots in the paint and sometimes not even trying to come into the lane. Willie is not only a defensive post specialist, his athletic ability much like Frank's enables him to switch pick and rolls with anyone and stay with a much smaller opposing guard. Finally Cauley-Stein (9.1 ppg) can run the floor very much like a guard in transition and this allows him to get many open fast break dunks and put backs.
Saturday's game between the Badgers and Wildcats will have plenty of great matchups to watch including Kentucky's defensive strategy to try and stop a red hot Sam Dekker, but no other matchup could be more important than Kaminsky against Cauley-Stein and Frank the Tank will need a big game for the Badgers to move on.