Preview: Manhattan vs. Wisconsin

Playing in its third holiday tournament in three seasons, Wisconsin hopes its weekend in Orlando gives them a similar boost to its weekend in Maui last year. The Badgers will play three games in four days, starting with their tip-off against Manhattan Thursday.

Manhattan (2-1, 0-0 MAAC) vs. Wisconsin (2-1, 0-0 Big Ten)

Date/Time - Thursday, November 25, at 1 p.m. Central

Arena – Disney HP Fieldhouse(5,000)

Television - ESPN2 (Bob Picozzi & Dan Dakich). ESPN 3D (Lou Canellis & Bob Wenzel).

Radio - Wisconsin Radio Network (Matt Lepay and Mike Lucas)

Series – UW Leads 2-0

Last Meeting - Wisconsin won, 55-42, on March 13, 1996 in the first round of the NIT in Madison

Wisconsin Probable Starters

11 Jordan Taylor (Junior Guard, 16.3 ppg)

21 Josh Gasser (Freshman Guard, 11.7 ppg)

30 Jon Leuer (Senior Forward, 18.7 ppg)

31 Mike Bruesewitz (Freshman Forward, 7.7 ppg)

52 Keaton Nankivil (Senior Forward, 8.0 ppg)

Off the Bench

2 Wquinton Smith (Senior Guard, 1.7 ppg)

5 Ryan Evans (Sophomore Forward, 8.0 ppg)

24 Tim Jarmusz (Senior Forward, 3.7 ppg)

33 Rob Wilson (Junior Guard, 0.0 ppg)

40 Jared Berggren (Sophomore Forward, 4.0 ppg)

Manhattan Probable Starters

11 Andrew Gabriel (Senior Forward, 11.7 ppg)

21 Djibril Coulibaly (Junior Center, 0.0 ppg)

24 George Beamon (Sophomore Guard, 16.7 ppg)

31 Michael Alvarado (Freshman Guard, 16.3 ppg)

50 Kidani Brutus (Junior Guard, 13.7 ppg)

Off the Bench

1 Robert Martina (Junior Forward, 5.0 ppg)

32 Rhamel Brown (Freshman Forward, 8.0 ppg)

Last Time Out

Chace Stanback scored 17 of his 25 points in the second half to lead UNLV to a 68-65 victory over Wisconsin on Saturday. Justin Hawkins' steal of a Badgers' inbounds pass with 6 seconds left allowed the Rebels to hold on to a 66-65 lead. Hawkins was fouled on the play and made two free throws for the final margin. Stanback's jumper gave UNLV a 66-65 lead with 51 seconds left. Oscar Bellfield added 18 points for the Rebels (3-0).

Jordan Taylor led the Badgers (2-1) with 19 points. Ryan Evans scored 11 and Jon Leuer scored 10 for Wisconsin, which held a 37-29 rebounding edge.

Last Meeting

Led by First Team All-MAAC forward Heshimu Evans, who averaged 12.9 points and 6.3 rebounds, the Jaspers jumped out to an early lead over the Badgers before 8,913 fans, and carried a 26-24 advantage at halftime. However, the Jaspers cooled off in the second half and Wisconsin outscored Manhattan 31-16 to secure a 13-point victory.

The Jaspers were led in scoring by forward Jeronimo Bucero who had 16 points on 7-for-15 shooting. Wisconsin had three players post double figures as Hennssy Auriantal led the way with 15 points. Mosezell Peterson had 13 points and Sam Okey added 11.

Series Notes:

Wisconsin is 5-0 against teams from the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC), including a 60-58 overtime win against Iona in the ?rst round of the 2008 Paradise Jam Tournament.

Manhattan coach Barry Rohrssen was an assistant coach on the Pittsburgh team that recorded wins over UW in 2003-04 and 2005-06 seasons.

Including a pair of games in the 2010 NCAA Tournament that were played in Jacksonville, Wisconsin owns a 3-3 overall record in games played in the state of Florida.

Manhattan's four wins over Big Ten competition have come against Michigan, Northwestern, Ohio State and Penn State. The last Manhattan win against a Big Ten member was during the 1972-73 when the Jaspers beat Michigan, 84-79 at Madison Square Garden.

Manhattan Notes:

Sophomore swingman George Beamon is leading the Jaspers in scoring (16.7 ppg) and rebounding (9.3 rpg), while freshman point guard Michael Alvarado has logged a team-best 4.3 assists per game, going along with a 16.3 scoring average.

The Jaspers have shot 44.7 percent as a team from the field and have tallied a 76 percent free-throw mark. These figures have improved from last season when the team finished the year shooting 40.5 percent from the field and 68.4 percent at the charity stripe.

Manhattan is playing in its first preseason tournament since participating in the 2005 NIT Season Tip-Off. Manhattan's trip to Orlando for the Old Spice Classic is Jaspers longest road trip since traveling to California in 2006-07 to face Long Beach State and Pepperdine.

Just three games into the season Michael Alvarado has already made a big impact for the Manhattan men's basketball team. The freshman point guard who garnered several accolades during his time playing locally at All Hallows High School is averaging 16.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and 4.3 assists for the Jaspers.

Wisconsin Notes:

The Badgers have out-rebounded all three of their opponents this season, owning a Big Ten-best +18.0 average rebounding margin per game. That includes a +9.0 average margin on the offensive glass.

Through three games, Wisconsin ranks third in the Big Ten, connecting on 49.4 percent of its shots (84-for-170). By comparison, UW shot 44.3 percent from the ?eld last season.

As a team, Wisconsin is shooting 82.6 percent from the free throw line this season, tops in the Big Ten. UW has converted 57 of 69 attempts at the charity stripe. UW has MADE 13 more free throws than its opponents have attempted. The Badgers are 57-of-69 at the line, while their foes are 30-of-44.

Prediction

If the Badgers shoot a little better and keep better control of the ball, Wisconsin comes back from Vegas a winner, something few people do when they are within a stone throw of the Strip. UW starting forwards Keaton Nankivil, Jon Leuer and Mike Bruesewitz combined to make six of 18 shots overall and turn the ball over seven times. For a group that is supposed to be the strength of the Badgers to play like that and still only lose by three, it breaths hope into what could be a very successful season.

This field is comparable to the field UW saw n Maui last year, a three-game stretch that set the tone for the rest of the non-conference season. Wisconsin is 102-34 (.750) in regular-season non-conference games under Ryan, and Manhattan is picked to finish ninth in the preseason MAAC.

I think UW might have a little turkey in its stomach and come out a little sluggish, but the Badgers should win this game by 18 and play the Aggies on Friday.

Worgull's Record: 3-0

Points off Prediction: 24 (8 per game)


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