This team really is something special.
After a season full of history-making moments, the Northwestern secured yet another one for the record books with its 72-64 win over Maryland. The win sends Northwestern to its first-ever Big Ten Tournament semifinal, in which the Wildcats will face Ethan Happ and the 24th-ranked Wisconsin Badgers.
Last time the Wildcats faced Wisconsin, Northwestern won 66-59 on February 12th in the Kohl Center. At that point, that was the biggest win in Northwestern basketball history. Now, Northwestern has a chance to earn another historic win, reach its first Big Ten Tournament final, and perhaps even go on to lock up an NCAA Tournament bid a few hours before the Selection Show.
But first things first, Northwestern needs to continue its dream season by shutting down Wisconsin, a task which the Wildcats excelled at in their first meeting. They also did an incredible job on the defensive end against Maryland, and will need to repeat the feat against Happ, Bronson Koenig and Nigel Hayes.
However, this is not quite the same Wisconsin team that went 21-3 to start the season and was lodged firmly in the top-10. The loss to Northwestern on February 12th sent the Badgers into a brief tailspin. Wisconsin lost five of their last seven regular season games before knocking off a tired Indiana team on Friday. Whether we see January Wisconsin or late February Wisconsin remains to be seen.
Yesterday, Northwestern didn’t look like it wanted to leave Washington D.C. any time soon. Today, it has another chance to extend their stay. Let’s get amped!
Game time: 2:30 p.m. CST (possibly later if the first game goes long)
TV Channel: CBS
Streaming: CBS Sports Online
Mobile: CBS Sports App
KenPom prediction: Wisconsin 63, Northwestern 60 (39% chance NU wins)