The No. 17 Wisconsin Badgers (7-2) play host to the Idaho State Bengals (1-7) Wednesday night at the Kohl Center. The Badgers enter currently on a three-game win streak, while the Bengals got their first win of the season two games ago, but lost their most recent match up against Lamar University.
- G: Bronson Koenig (15.2 ppg, 1.7 apg)
- G: Zak Showalter (6.7 ppg, 2.7 rpg)
- F: Nigel Hayes (13.1 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 3.8 apg)
- F: Vitto Brown (7.1 ppg, 3.4 rpg)
- C: Ethan Happ (13.8 ppg, 9.8 rpg)
- G: Ethan Telfair (19.8 ppg, 6.2 apg, 5.2 rpg)
- G: Brandon Boyd (13.1 ppg, 2.1 apg)
- G: Geno Luzcando (11.9 ppg, 6.3 rpg)
- G/F: Gary Chivichyan (7.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg)
- C: Novak Topalovic (9.8 ppg, 7.3 rpg)
The Badgers come into this game playing their best basketball of the young season, having won three games in a row, including two very solid performances against then-ranked Syracuse as well as Oklahoma. Both of those teams participated in the 2016 Final Four.
The Bengals, on the other hand, led by fifth-year head coach Bill Evans, are struggling so far this season. Idaho State is 1-7, although they have played some much bigger and tougher programs like New Mexico and Texas Tech, where they were clear underdogs.
That being said, the team had pretty high expectations coming into this year. The Bengals had their best season in 15 years record-wise last year, and return their star player Ethan Telfair, younger brother of NBA journeyman Sebastian Telfair.
Wisconsin will obviously come in as the heavy favorite, but will certainly have to contain Telfair who averages about 20, 5 and 5 per game. He’s not quite as athletic, but his game is similar to that of Kiefer Sykes, who caused the Badgers plenty of problems while at UW-Green Bay a few years back.
The 17th-ranked Badgers will look to continue their improved shot choices, while not turning it over and forcing up as many three-pointers. Wisconsin would also be wise to feed the post often, as they have a talent and depth advantage in the paint.
The Badgers and Bengals will match up at 7 pm in Madison on Wednesday, and the game can be streamed on ESPN3.