Notes: Old Friends Reunite

Staying at No.14 in the polls, Wisconsin looks for its first true road victory of the season and will try to accomplish it Tuesday against one of head coach Bo Ryan's former players and assistants in Milwaukee coach Rob Jeter.

MADISON - Of all the branches of the Wisconsin coaching tree, it's hard not to view Milwaukee coach Rob Jeter as the prized pupil of coach Bo Ryan.

After playing from 1987 to 1991 as a starting forward for Ryan, including captaining the 1991 NCAA Division III tournament, Jeter spent 10 of his 11 years as an assistant coach working under Ryan before getting his first head coaching opportunity at Milwaukee in 2005.

In seven seasons in Milwaukee, Jeter is 109-90 overall, 63-43 in the Horizon League, led his team to a win in the first round of the 2006 NCAA Tournament after winning the regular season and tournament championship and won his second regular season championship last season, an accomplishment that earned him his first Horizon League Coach of the Year award.

Picked to finish fourth in the league this season, Milwaukee is off to an 8-2 start, only losing road games at Michigan State and Northern Iowa.

"Playing against a former player and a fellow coach, that's a little different," said Ryan Monday. "But once the game starts you play and talk about it later."

Ryan is 10-0 against his former school and is a perfect 2-0 playing in Milwaukee, winning 81-79 at the Klotsche Center in December 2001 and 61-39 at the U.C. Cellular Arena, where the two teams will play tomorrow, in 2007.

Wisconsin and Milwaukee have played every season since the 1992-93 season.

Stiemsma Gets NBA Opportunity

After being named the NBA Development League defensive player of the year in 2010 with Sioux Falls, former 6-11 Wisconsin center Greg Stiemsma earned himself an NBA opportunity after signing a contract with the Boston Celtics.

According to ESPN.com, Stiemsma's contract is $762,195 for this season.

Stiemsma played in 95 games with Wisconsin from 2004-08 and averaged 11.1 minutes, 3.1 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game as a senior to help Wisconsin to dual conference championships and a berth in the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16.

"He struggled with some things (depression in 05-05), which is well documented, but he still loved the game of basketball," Ryan said. "He's learned some things and he has things in his life to where he feels pretty good about where he is. Why not play as long as you can? They are getting shots. They are getting chances.

"And you know what we do, we cheer as hard as we can for them. They come back here every once in awhile and get a workout in when they can, but they've been so busy that they haven't had a chance. They've got an opportunity. More power to them. The love of the game is still pretty neat to see."

Black-Eye Brawl

At the same time Wisconsin was just beginning its contest against UNLV, an ugly brawl between Cincinnati and Xavier resulted in the intercity game called 9.4 seconds early, punches thrown, benches being cleared and four players from each team being suspended.

Ryan wouldn't comment on the incident, saying he hasn't explored the issue due to the quick turnaround between Saturday and tomorrow's game, but said he'd been involved in a similar altercation playing a road game at Wilkes College 20 miles up the road against rival Scranton.

"There was a slight disagreement, one guy goes down for the count after another guy did something to him (and) next thing you know, there is an 85-year-old woman with an umbrella beating one of my teammates before order was restored," Ryan said. "We left the game in our bus and we were on the floor because the windows were being broken. I have no idea what they were throwing. Maybe candy or best wishes? But, it was not pretty.

"It was one of those things that shouldn't happen, but we are all human. It happened … but we all made up … In all seriousness, this other incident is nothing like we are referring to here."

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