Nebraska - Wisconsin primer

Nebraska looks like a team playing with more confidence the last two games. Nothing could be a bigger boost than knocking off Wisconsin in Madison.

After getting back to .500 in the Big Ten, Nebraska (10-6, 2-2) travels to No. 7 Wisconsin (15-2, 3-1) on Thursday night.

The Badgers, who had an eight-game winning streak snapped by Rutgers on Sunday, will be without the services of senior Treveon Jackson (9.4 ppg / 2.9 apg). Sophomore Bronson Koening (4.9 ppg / 2.1 apg) is expected to fill in for the senior.

“Koening is a really good player,” said Nebraska head coach Tim Miles. “(He) facilitates. His assist to turnover ratio is really good. He finds open players. He can rhythm into a jumper. Traeveon is a little more aggressive.

“If Bronson needs a break or if you get into the backup, that’s going to change the rotation more.”

Wisconsin will have the services of center Frank Kaminsky, who missed the Rutgers contest with concussion like symptoms. The senior is averaging nearly 17 points per contest while pulling down 8.2 rebounds a game.

“Watching his development has been really exciting as a coach,” said Miles. “Here is a kid who didn’t play much our first year here. Now, he’s one of the final 25 finalist for the Naismith award a candidate for Player of the Year in the conference and maybe the country.”

Wisconsin played a huge part in Nebraska making the NCAA tournament last year. The Huskers knocked off the No. 9 Badgers at Pinnacle Bank Arena to close out the regular season, 77-68.

“(Nebraska's) got two great scorers but we'll be ready for whatever they bring at us," Kaminsky told the Associated Press.

The Badgers are part of a brutal five-game stretch to end the month of January for the Huskers. At 10-6, an NCAA tournament bid is not completely lost, but Nebraska will have to find a way to win at least three more games this month. Their opponents record in that time – 59-30.

“January is the grind. I always say January is like Wednesday. The whole month of January in college basketball is like hump day,” said Miles. “There’s no light at the end of the tunnel and you’ve been playing for so long. Sometimes it takes a lot to keep these guys going. Everybody knows that January is like Wednesday.”

Nebraska Probable Starters

G.) Benny Parker – 6.1 ppg / 2.1 apg

G.) Terran Petteway – 18.9 ppg / 5.4 rpg

F.) Shavon Shields – 17.1 ppg / 6.9 rpg

F.) David Rivers – 5.4 ppg / 5.3 rpg

F.) >Walter Pitchford – 7.7 ppg / 4.9 rpg

Since joining the Big Ten, Nebraska has struggled playing in Madison, losing by an average of 22.5 points per game.

”We haven’t done a good enough job there with this team,” said Miles. “We are going to have to go in with a fighter’s mentality.

“There are some teams who have really performed well there. Iowa, Purdue recently. You have to take a page out of their book and see some of the things they do and go from there.”

Wisconsin is around a 15-point favorite going into the game.

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