Future Is Bright For Badgers - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Future Is Bright For Badgers

ESPN College Basketball Analyst Andy Katz ESPN College Basketball Analyst Andy Katz
Wisconsin senior center Evan Anderson Wisconsin senior center Evan Anderson
Wisconsin freshman guard Bronson Koenig Wisconsin freshman guard Bronson Koenig
Wisconsin freshman forward Nigel Hayes Wisconsin freshman forward Nigel Hayes

Arlington, TX (WQOW) -- The sting of Saturday's Final Four loss is still fresh, but it's already time to move forward for the Wisconsin basketball program.

Wisconsin will not play for the national championship Monday night but going forward, the Badgers will be in the national conversation. Many analysts expect to see Wisconsin near the top when the 2014-15 preseason rankings come out.

"I think they'll be somewhere in the top five or top ten, somewhere in there. They only lose Ben Brust in terms of a key contributor. Frank Kaminsky and Sam Dekker, Josh Gasser, Traevon Jackson, Nigel Hayes are all going to be back. I think they're going to end up being the preseason favorite in the Big Ten," says ESPN college basketball analyst Andy Katz.

Both Frank Kaminsky and Sam Dekker have said they'll be back next season. That means Wisconsin will return eight of the nine players who saw action in Saturday's loss to Kentucky. It figures to be a very motivated group heading into the offseason.

 "We know we have a lot of work to do. All we have to do is put in the time and we'll definitely get better, the whole team will get better," says freshman forward Nigel Hayes.
Junior forward Duje Dukan adds: "It's huge. This is the first time all of us have gotten a sniff of the Final Four. It's obviously exciting when you have a lot of guys coming back for the future."
"Our goal was to win a national championship and we were so close. I thought we deserved to win that game," says freshman guard Bronson Koenig. "I feel like everyone in this locker room feels like we deserved to win this game, and that'll just bring us more motivation for next year to get back."
Wisconsin will need to replace three seniors, all of whom brought a great work ethic and strong leadership to the program.  
"You know, I just wish great things for these guys, always and forever, no matter what they do. Next season -- the future of this program, it's got a great upside and there's more that can be accomplished for this group."

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WQOW. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's pubic inspection file should contact News Director Dan Schillinger at 715-852-5920. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.