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March 24, 2011

Breakdown: UW vs. Butler

Having snuck past Kansas State in the round of 32 over the weekend, the Wisconsin men's basketball team is back in the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2008. Butler awaits.

Before tonight''s tip-off, BadgerBlitz.com analyzes the potential matchups between Wisconsin and Butler to provide a closer look at UW's round of 32 tournament matchup.

Quick Notes:

-Tonight's game will mark the 31st meeting between the two schools. UW holds the edge with a 17-13 advantage in the series. This will be the first meeting on a neutral floor, though.

-Bo Ryan was 0-5 against Butler during his two-year stint at UW-Milwaukee. He was not on the coaching staff at UW when the Badgers lost to Butler in 2001.

-Wisconsin junior guard Jordan Taylor is only 21 points shy of reaching 1,000 for his career.

Butler vs. Wisconsin
Butler Wisconsin Players The Word Advantage
Shelvin Mack vs. Jordan Taylor, PG Mack and Taylor had two interesting endings to their respective third round games. Mack was whistled for a foul near midcourt that gave Pitt guard Gilbert Brown an opportunity to win the game at the free throw line with just mere seconds to play. Taylor, who shot just 2-of-16 from the field, recorded a clutch steal that set up Bruesewitz's huge 3-pointer and also blocked Jacob Pullen's last second three that would have tied the game. Look, both players are crucial for their team's success tonight. Taylor, having a bad game last time out, will need to bounce back more though. Mack, who scored 30 against Pitt will need to shy away from critical mishaps. Advantage: Wisconsin
Shawn Vanzant vs. Josh Gasser, G Gasser didn't really do much in UW's opening win over Belmont, but the freshman bounced back in a huge way against Kansas State. Against Vanzant, a player that averages around eight points a game, plays from Gasser will be absolutely critical. Any offensive production will be welcomed. More importantly, Gasser will need to be defensively sound to help on Mack and company throughout the game. Advantage: Push
Chase Stigall vs. Tim Jarmusz F If ever there was a time for Jarmusz to find some confidence with his stroke the time would be now. Against Kansas State the senior forward scored eight points and didn't miss a shot. If he can exude that same confidence against Butler, you would have to like UW's chances. Advantage: Push
Andrew Smith vs. Jon Leuer G/F Leuer, like Jarmusz, has a ton of confidence in his game right now. Against Butler, you have to like the matchup Leuer will have. He's tall, lanky and versatile. He can put the ball on the floor or hit from outside. Smith is no slouch himself, but at 6-foot-11 it will be interesting to see how he defends a guy like Leuer. Advantage: Wisconsin
Matt Howard vs. Keaton Nankivil, C You get the feeling that Bo Ryan would love having Howard on one of his squads. He plays so hard on every single play and played crucial roles in each of Butler's thrilling wins so far this tournament. He'll be as much of a bulldog (excuse the pun) as Nankivil will have seen this season. But as always, will Howard be able to step out and defend Nankivil or Leuer? That remains to be seen. Advantage: Wisconsin
Ronald Nored (pictured), Khyle Marshall, Zach Hahn, Erik Fromm vs. Ryan Evans (pictured), Rob Wilson, Jared Berggren, Mike Bruesewitz, Ben Brust, Brett Valentyn, Bench Nored has proven to be one of the better defenders in this entire field. If he has a chance to match up with Taylor he could likely frustrate the Badger junior. If that were to happen guys like Bruesewitz, Evans and Valentyn will need to step up and make plays. Advantage: Push
Brad Stevens vs. Bo Ryan, Head coach The wily vet against the up-and-comer storyline never really gets old. What Stevens is doing is pretty spectacular considering the talent he lost a year ago. Ryan, a guy not shy when it comes to taking on opportunity. And with an opportunity to get back to that elusive elite eight on tap, expect Bo to have his guys ready to play tonight. Advantage: Wisconsin


Thursday, March 24, at approximately 8:57 p.m. CT


New Orleans, LA.


New Orleans Arena (18.,500)


TBS (Gus Johnson, Len Elmore, Reggie Miller, Marty Snider)


Wisconsin Radio Network (Matt Lepay and Mike Lucas


UW leads 17-13

Last Meeting

Butler won, 58-44, in January of 2001


Wisconsin: USA Today: 13, Assoc. Press: 16

Butler: USA Today: RV, Assoc. Press: RV

Nebraska NEWS


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