Wisconsin's Toughest Nonconference Games in 2018

Wisconsin's Toughest Nonconference Games in 2018

Basketball

Wisconsin's Toughest Nonconference Games in 2018

MADISON, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin kicks off its 2018-19 season tonight against Coppin State at the Kohl Center. It will not rank as one of the Badgers’ toughest tests or most exciting games on its 11-game nonconference schedule.

Even so, Wisconsin’s non-conference schedule will be a good test to see what to expect from the Badgers this year. Here are some of the key nonconference games to watch this season.

November 13 – Xavier Musketeers (Away)

November 21-23 – Battle 4 Atlantis (Neutral)

November 27 – NC State Wolfpack (Home)

December 8 – Marquette Golden Eagles (Away)

December 29 – Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (Away)

Wisconsin will get a week off after playing Coppin State before its first road trip to Xavier for the Gavitt Games. Last year, the Musketeers won the Big East regular-season crown with a 15-3 record, earned the first NCAA Tournament No. 1 seed in school history and finished 29-6 overall, including a November win at the Kohl Center. Xavier is picked to finish sixth in the preseason poll.

A Thanksgiving weekend in the Bahamas will be more than a vacation for the Badgers. Starting with Stanford (picked ninth in the preseason poll), Wisconsin could face Florida or Oklahoma in the second round and either Butler, Dayton, Middle Tennessee or Virginia in the final round.

Wisconsin draws N.C. State in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, a team that always is tough and is a bit underrated because of the strength of the ACC, a perfect transition into the Badgers playing a pair of Big Ten games the following weekend.

After a road game at Iowa and a home game against Rutgers, Wisconsin plays its annual I-94 rivalry at Marquette in the brand new Fiserv Forum. Last year the Golden Eagles won by 19 points in Madison and look even better on paper this year, tabbed as the second-best team in the Big East. Marquette welcomes back four starters and two transfers who are expected to play significant roles, including second-team All-Big East guard Maurice Howard (20.4 points per game).

UW’s final Big Ten tune-up will travel to Bowling Green, KY, to face a Western Kentucky team that nearly beat the Badgers in Madison last year. The Hilltoppers are predicted to win Conference USA and will be centered on five-star freshman big man Charles Bassey, who had a double-double in each of the two exhibition games, averaging 18 points and 11 rebounds.

More BadgersInsider
Home