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From the Cheap Seats: 4 Thoughts on Wisconsin

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Rutgers, on the verge of a massive upset, blows it.

NCAA Basketball: Wisconsin at Rutgers Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

This is What We Signed Up For: For the past three years, this is what I’ve been asking—no, begging—for. This is what makes college basketball the best sport out there. The little guy gave the big team all they could handle. Rutgers squeezed every last ounce of their talent on to the floor and had a 9 point lead with three minutes to go. But college basketball can tear your heart out, even when it’s fun. And the Badgers never panicked and made every winning play they could. You knew when it went to overtime, the game was over. But this is why we watch. This is college basketball.

Free Throws: When it comes down to it, Rutgers is not a good free throw shooting team. That’s all you can say. But down the stretch Candido Sa, Deshawn Freeman and Nigel Johnson went a combined 2-6 from the line. Had they even gone 4-6, it probably ices the game. This is going to be a battle for the rest of the year. Had Rutgers made their free throws this season, they probably have at least 3 Big Ten wins already.

Mental Lapses: This is a team that’s still learning how to win. And with that comes a lot of head shaking moments. The team misses some defensive switches and easy baskets. Against a team like Wisconsin, you have to play a perfect game for the upset. Don’t have the ability to do that on the road (yeah, this was considered a home game, but..) yet.

Iowa is winnable: Rutgers comes back to the RAC Tuesday and it needs to be as rocking as today was. The Scarlet Knights had Iowa on the ropes a few weeks ago. If they can do that at home, the crowd will only help them pull away. This season hasn’t been perfect, but it’s been fun. A win Tuesday will help a lot.

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