Seth Davis of CBS Sports and Sports Illustrated joined the show Thursday to talk Wisconsin basketball and the NCAA tournament championship game.
In his view, where is Wisconsin as a program?
“It’s as good as any in the country… I think Wisconsin fans have a pretty good understanding and appreciation for what Bo Ryan has done there. I think they recognize that it’s just gonna be hard for him to recruit against the Michigans and the Michigan States and the Ohio States of the world… Bo Ryan, I think, does a better job than any coach in the country of not only recruiting kids who can play for him and not only coaching kids who can play for him, but developing kids who play for him year to year. So even when they lose great players, you always have a high degree of confidence that there’s going to be some kid coming up behind… I have very deep admiration and affection and respect for Bo Ryan, and I’m sure that the vast majority of Wisconsin fans feel the same way.”
What could Bo Ryan do with Michigan’s roster?
I think he’d do a lot similar to what John Beilein is doing. I mean it’s actually kinda similar profiles. They play a little bit of a different style but John Beilein is just a masterful tactitian, one of the best offensive tactitians I’ve ever seen… At the end of the day, basketball, and athletics in general, is mostly about talent, and any coach is going to do better with better talent, which is not to say that Bo does not have talented players. He certainly does.”
Why does he have Michigan winning it all?
“Coming into the tournament I, like everybody else under the sun, picked Louisville to win the championship, and even as recently as late last week I was writing on SI.com that Louisville was going to win… After thinking about it and watching those teams play on Saturday night, I think the difference is a lot of people who go up against Louisville use full court press, and their goal is to just kind of handle the press, survive and advance, get it in the front court, run a little bit of offense. But I think Michigan can actually beat the press for scores, and that is a big distinction… I just think that is going to be a terrific asset to carry into this game.”
What is his final expectation for the last game of the season tonight?
“I think Michigan’s going to win. Like I said, I picked Louisville beforehand, but… it’s not necessarily about which team is better. It’s about the matchup, you know, your strengths versus my weaknesses, my strengths versus your weaknesses. And sometimes, it’s my strengths versus your strengths. And Louisville’s primary strength is full-court press, and Michigan is ranked 1st in the country in turnover percentage… Call it a hunch… but I like Michigan to win the game.”