The Wisconsin Badgers have lost two key members of the starting line up to injuries so far this season. This leaves Bo Ryan with less experience on the court and a vacant point guard position; two things heavily relied on by the legendary coach.
Mike Bruesewitz will be out for the beginning of the season with a leg injury and Josh Gasser will be out for the season with a torn ACL.
After the graduation of Jordan Taylor last year, the point guard position was left open and with big shoes to fill. Bo Ryan had recently named Gasser the starting point guard for the Badgers days before the injury occurred.
This leaves Ryan without a point guard days before the season is underway. Ryan is notorious for having an experienced point guard that sets the tone for the team, takes care of the ball and makes plays as the shot clock winds down. This year, his options force him to hand over the reigns to a point guard far less experience.
There are three potential point guards on the squad, one of which has no game experience yet. George Marshall, a red shirt freshman, will likely step up to fill the lead role. Other options include junior, Ben Brust and sophomore, Traevon Jackson, both of which are not natural point guards.
Despite the situation at hand, there is no doubt that Ryan will have his team prepared by tip off of the first game. Year in and year out, Wisconsin plays within the same system regardless of the players on the roster. Ryan recruits hardworking players that are willing to buy in to his system and mold into the framework provided.
Marshall spent all of last year playing on the scout team against Jordan Taylor. This means that he has experience defending a phenomenal point guard and experience being defended by a great defender. After a year of taking notes from Taylor, Marshall should know what is expected from a Badger point guard and be ready to step into the role.
Experience or no experience, every player on the Badgers roster has good character, great work ethic and respect for the veteran coach. The point guard spot will not be empty for long and when it is filled, I am confident that it will not be a set back in the success of the Badgers.