Brad Davison told the Badgers’ locker room following the loss to Michigan State last Sunday that the team would rather beat the Spartans during the Big Ten Tournament anyway.

Following the #9 Badgers cathartic win over #8 Maryland in the second round on Thursday, Davison has the opportunity to make his statement come true.

For the second time in just five days, Wisconsin and #1 Michigan State will face off against each other. Wisconsin gave Michigan State all it could handle in a 68-63 defeat in the Kohl Center. The Badgers won five of their last seven, but most importantly, they need to beat the Spartans to keep their NCAA Tournament hopes alive.

Michigan State beat Wisconsin 68-63 on February 25th. Tom Izzo’s squad has won both contests this season between the two teams, as MSU easily handled Wisconsin in East Lansing in January by 15 points.

Cassius Winston has averaged 18.5 PPG in the two meetings thus far, including a perfect six-of-six from beyond the arch on Sunday. Davison scored a career-high 30 points on Sunday with 23 coming in the second half.

Even though the Badgers have been playing their best stretch of basketball all season long, it’s still going to take a monumental effort to top MSU. The Spartans have won 12 straight and have not lost since mid-January.

On Wednesday, the Badgers beat the Terrapins with a solid defensive effort combined with a balanced scoring effort. Four Badgers starters were in double figures and Maryland failed to score over 30 points in either half.