Preview: No.24 Purdue at No.8 Wisconsin

It's a battle for sole possession of first place in the Big Ten conference tonight when No.24 Purdue travel to No.8 Wisconsin, looking to sweep the regular season series at the Kohl Center.

No.24 Purdue (18-5, 9-1) at No.8 Wisconsin (19-3, 9-1)

Date/Time - Saturday, Feb. 9 at 8:00 p.m. Central

Arena – Kohl Center (17,190)

Television - Big Ten Network (Matt Devlin, Tim McCormick)

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

Series – Purdue leads 99-62

Last Meeting – Purdue won 60-56 on January 16, 2008 in West Lafayette

Wisconsin Probable Starters

1 Marcus Landry (Junior Forward, 11.2 ppg - leads the Badgers in scoring in conference games)

3 Trevon Hughes (Sophomore Guard, 13.1 ppg - second in the Big Ten in steals)

22 Michael Flowers (Senior Guard, 9.1 ppg - second among Big Ten guards in field goal percentage)

32 Brian Butch (Senior Forward, 12.8 ppg - double double last time against Purdue)

45 Joe Krabbenhoft (Junior Forward, 7.7 ppg - 2.20 assist-to-turnover ratio)

Off the Bench

12 Jason Bohannon (Sophomore Guard, 6.7 ppg - shooting .857 from the free throw line)

30 Jon Leuer (Freshman Forward, 4.5 ppg - has made 11-of-19 three-pointers this season)

34 Greg Stiemsma (Senior Center, 2.9 ppg - leads team with 29 blocked shots)

Purdue Probable Starters

5 Keaton Grant (Sophomore Guard, 10.8 ppg)

4 Robbie Hummel (Freshman Forward, 10.4 ppg

33 E'Twaun Moore (Freshman Guard, 11.2 ppg)

3 Chris Kramer (Sophomore Guard, 6.8 ppg)

21 Nemanja Calasan (Junior Forward, 7.1 ppg)

Off The Bench

14 Scott Martin (Freshman Forward, 8.9 ppg)

25 JaJuan Johnson (Freshman Center, 6.0 ppg)

12 Tarrance Crump (Senior Guard, 5.0 ppg)

20 Marcus Green (Junior Guard, 5.0 ppg)

Last Time Out

Wisconsin was clutch from the free throw line down the stretch, making 10 straight free throws in the final 3:30 to win at Iowa 60-54.

It was the second conference road win in the past four days for Wisconsin.

Iowa native Jason Bohannon was the feel-good story, scoring nine points, including making six of those 10 final free throws.

First Meeting

Despite a game-high 20 points from senior Brian Butch, No.11 Wisconsin got little help offensively from anyone else and struggled to keep pace with the youthful Boilermakers.

In the end, Wisconsin had the ball with a chance to tie in the waning seconds, but it was not meant to be, as the Badgers dropped their first conference game of the year to host Purdue, 60-56, Saturday afternoon.

Scoring 14 of his 20 points after halftime, Butch went 7-of-10 from the field, 4-for-7 at the line and hauled in 13 rebounds, his fourth double-double of the season.

Other than Butch, Wisconsin had trouble finding the bottom of the net. Excluding Butch's shooting, the Badgers shot 13-for-42 (30.9 percent) from the field.

Series Notes:

This will be the 162nd meeting between Wisconsin and Purdue with the Boilermakers lead the all-time series 99- 62, but UW holds a 44-34 edge in Madison

The Badgers have won four of the last six meetings between the teams

Wisconsin has won eight consecutive home games against Purdue, dating back to 1997

Wisconsin Notes:

Wisconsin leads the country (according to the Feb. 3 NCAA statistics) in scoring defense (54.1). UW also ranks second in the league in field goal percentage defense (.379).

Wisconsin's 19-3 start is tied for the second-best start to a season in school history. The only UW team with a better record through 22 games was last year's squad which opened the season 21-1. Two other teams (1940-41 and 1998-99) started the season 19-3.

UW is also 9-1 in conference play, tied with Purdue for first place. It is the eighth consecutive year Wisconsin has won at least nine Big Ten games, a school record. The Badgers' 9-1 mark ties for the fourth-best 10-game start to conference play in school history. UW began 10-0 in three consecutive seasons (1912, 1913 and 1914) under Walter Meanwell. The Badgers were also 9-1 in 1916, 1923, 1929, 1941 and 2007.

Wisconsin has won at least 19 games in each of head coach Bo Ryan's seven seasons. Prior to the 2001-02 season (Ryan's first), UW had just four 19-win seasons in 103 years.

Purdue Notes:

Purdue has won its last eight-straight conference games and 11 of its last 12 games overall.

The Boilermakers' last 9-1 conference start was during the 1989-90 season. That season, the Boilermakers finished the conference season with a 13-5 record. It was also Matt Painter's freshman year.

Purdue has won three-straight conference road games (Iowa, Penn State and Illinois) for the fi rst time since the 1999- 2000 season. The last time Purdue has won four-straight conference games was during the 1995-96 season.

The Boilermakers are 1-1 against ranked teams during Big Ten games. They lost at No. 6 Michigan State, 78-75 and knocked off No. 11 Wisconsin at home, 60-56.

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