Busting Brackets

Wisconsin Basketball: 3 keys to beat Purdue in top 10 showdown

Tyler Wahl & Chucky Hepburn
Tyler Wahl & Chucky Hepburn / John Fisher/GettyImages
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Prioritize drive and kick opportunities

Wisconsin's offense has made major strides in 2023-24 after a rough winter a year ago, thanks in large part to strong guard play and improved shooting from downtown. That three-point shooting seems like it will play an outsized role in this one, given the way these two match up.

The Badgers will still look to get in the paint - Tyler Wahl is one of the craftiest inside scorers anywhere in the Big Ten and St. John's transfer A.J. Storr knows how to get downhill and finish - but with Edey swatting away 2.3 shots per game, they should look to play an inside-out game. It isn't just the shots Edey blocks, either, but the fact he can negatively impact just about anything in the lane without fouling.

With the Boilermakers likely to collapse the paint to focus on Wahl, Storr, and Badger big man Steven Crowl, there should be space and opportunities to get Badger shooters going. That's great news for Max Klesmit, who has been on a tear since the calendar flipped to January. Outside of a six-point effort against Michigan State, Klesmit in every game since January 10. That includes a steady diet of three-point balls, including three in the Nebraska loss.

In addition to Klesmit, Chucky Hepburn should also get his looks from downtown, which could be the springboard he needs to get rolling after a quiet first half of the season. That doesn't mean Hepburn has been ineffective by any stretch, but he's seemed fine taking the backseat offensively so far through 2023-24. He seems to get up for these types of big games, and could be a difference-maker in this one.