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Big Ten in NCAA Basketball Sweet 16 Preview: Wisconsin should beat Baylor

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Wisconsin, the first of three Big Ten teams to play in the Sweet 16, should beat Baylor tonight.

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The game. which starts at 7:47 pm US EST, features two teams that have qualified for the Sweet 16 three of the last five years. Ironically, Baylor and Wisconsin have never played each other in the NCAA basketball tournament. .

The Badgers (27-8) are the No. 2 seed in the West region and beat American University and Baylor to earn their place in this regional semifinal game. Bo Ryan has never had a better scoring team in his 13 years as Wisconsin's head coach,

Four of his five starters routinely score in double digits. Junior forward Frank Kaminsky leads the way with a 13.6 points per game (PPG) average. He is closely followed by senior guard Ben Brust at 13.0 PPG and sophomore forward Sam Dekker at 12.7 PPG. Junior guard Traemon Jackson is scoring at a 10.8 PPG pace.

Baylor (26-11) brings an equally well-balanced offense led by senior forward Cory Jefferson who has a 13.6 PPG average. Three of their starters average between 11 and 12 points a game. Senior guard Brady Heslip is at 11.9 PPG, junior guard Kenny Chery is at 11.5 PPG and sophomore center Isaiah Austin has a 11.2 PPG avcrage.

The Bears, the No. 6 seed in the West region, beat a Big Ten team in the second round of the tournament. They defeated No. 11 seed Nebraska, 74-60, and then whalloped No. 3 seed Creighton, 85-55, to earn their spot in the Sweet 16.

Here are a couple of reasons that Wisconsin should beat Baylor tonight:

  • The Badgers have played seven of the top 25 teams this season and beat five of them
  • The players want to take their coach to the Final Four for the first time in his career.
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