When Duke came to the Kohl Center in December, Wisconsin basketball players downplayed the game as a fun non-conference opponent to help prepare UW for conference play.
The Badgers then knocked off the Blue Devils with an intensity normally reserved for March.
When Purdue traveled to Madison three weeks ago head coach Bo Ryan passed the game off as another tough Big Ten game.
UW proceeded to play with a fire fans hadn’t seen since, well, the Duke game.
With No. 5 Michigan State (19-3, 9-0 Big Ten) coming to Wisconsin (16-5, 6-3) Tuesday, UW players and Ryan are once again making light of a game with huge Big Ten and possible NCAA Tournament ramifications.
While the cliché responses are easy to understand, it is a lot more difficult to believe them.
“Every game is big,” UW junior Keaton Nankivil said. “We don’t look at it differently. This is a chance to play against a very good team at home… so it is a good chance to prove ourselves on the home floor.”
I hope the Badgers hand Michigan State their lunch. GO BUCKY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!