Duke and Wisconsin get ready to do battle for the top spot in college basketball on Monday night at 9 pm EST. It’s a story of two heavyweights from this season. Duke is looking to win their fifth NCAA basketball title and their first since 2010, while Wisconsin is looking to win their second championship. The Badgers last won in 1941.
In the final March Madness matchup, Wisconsin is looking to avenge their December 3 80-70 loss to the Blue Devils. Needless to say, tonight’s game is sure to be “must watch TV.”
Here is a comparison of each team by position
Duke features a stud in their backcourt in Quinn Cook. The senior from Washington D.C. averaged 15.6 points per game, 2.7 assists per game and shoots 40% from the 3-point line.
The Blue Devils also boast a productive freshman in Tyus Jones. The underclassmen averaged 11.5 points per game and a team leading 5.7 assists per game.
The two compliment each other to perfection. One carries the scoring load, while the other is the distributor― he can also score if need be.
Wisconsin has a trio of talented guards in Josh Gasser, Bronson Koenig and Traevon Jackson. Koenig did a good job of taking control of the Badgers offense while Jackson was out with an injury. Their stat lines don’t really pop out at you, but they are a solid group that find their scorers on the court.
Who has the edge? Duke
Both teams feature monsters in the frontcourt. The best players on both teams are high-scoring big men.
The Blue Devils will lean heavily on their scoring leader Jahlil Okafor. The 6’11” freshman center averages 17.5 points per game, 8.6 rebounds a game and boasts and impressive 66.7 field goal percentage. Okafor is a force to be reckoned with and Wisconsin will have a fight on their hands with him.
Fellow freshman Justise Winslow is another scorer in the Blue Devil frontcourt. The forward averages 12.7 points per game, 6.4 rebound a game and shoots a solid 41 percent from beyond the arc.
The Badgers have in Frank Kaminsky the NCAA Player of the Year. The seven foot forward averages 18.7 points per game, 8.1 rebounds a game, shoots 41 percent from the behind the 3-point line and he leads the team with 2.7 assists per game. The senior is an all-around monster on the court. Duke will have a problem trying to stop Kaminsky.
Wisconsin also has a another strong forward in Sam Dekker. The 6’9″ junior scores about 14 points a game and averages 5.4 rebound a game. He’s the other guy that Duke needs to keep under control if they want to win this game.
The third big man in the Badgers attack is Nigel Hayes. He is averaging 12.4 points a game, 6.3 rebounds a game and 2 assists per game.
Who has the edge? Wisconsin
Duke has one of the most respected basketball minds leading their program in Mike Krzyzewski. The four-time national champions and Olympic Gold Medal winning coach is hard to top.
Coach K has over 1000 wins making him the most successful coach in men’s college basketball.
Bo Ryan is no slouch either with over 380 wins, he has show he is a ready coach that has a winning program.
Who has the edge? Duke
Who is going to win the title?
This is a crazy hard prediction to make. Both teams come into the title game being great on the offensive side of the court. Defensively, however, the Blue Devils are masters of taking the opposing teams out of sync with their team defensive.
Duke will pull out the win in a close game.
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