The Big Ten only had one game on Saturday, but it was a significant meeting in Bloomington as Wisconsin traveled to face Indiana. The game would end up lopsided.
Let’s take a look at what happened.
Game of the Night:
-Indiana Hoosiers 63, No. 18 Wisconsin Badgers 45
On paper, this looked like a really even matchup. While the advanced numbers liked Indiana better, the Hoosiers had struggled in recent weeks. And even if Wisconsin might be without star forward Tyler Wahl, the program had proven it could play short-handed and succeed. Both teams also had plenty of motivation to win after missteps earlier in the week.
None of that would proven true.
Indiana not only controlled the matchup, but would win by 18 points in a game that might not have even been that close. The Hoosiers controlled both sides of the court and held Wisconsin to a putrid 0.71 points per possession on the afternoon. Trayce Jackson-Davis led the way with 18 points and 12 rebounds. Not a single Wisconsin starter scored double-digits.
The Hoosiers improved to 11-6 overall and 2-4 in Big Ten play with the win. It was the team’s first win since December 23rd and and its first win over a top 90 KenPom opponent since November 30th. Things had been spiraling for Indiana in recent weeks, so getting (even a momentarily) reprieve has to be much needed for the program. Fans will hope Jackson-Davis and his teammates can bring a similar energy moving forward.
On the other side, Wisconsin fell to 11-5 overall and 3-3 in Big Ten play with the loss. It’s Wisconsin’s third straight loss and deals another blow to the team’s rapidly declining Big Ten title hopes. The Badgers have likewise declined considerably in the advanced stats over this stretch, dropping from 42nd to 66th on KenPom. It’s a big enough drop to where the team is now projected to finish league play with a record below .500. Not exactly good news for a team that seemed poised to be in Big Ten title contention a few weeks ago.
Indiana will now prepare for a challenging road game against Illinois on Thursday. Wisconsin will hope to rebound against Penn State at home on Tuesday.