How Wisconsin can beat Kentucky

Badgers must use swing offense, hit 3-pointers and keep Cats off the glass

Updated: April 4, 2014, 2:54 PM ET
By Seth Greenberg | ESPN Insider

Andrew HarrisonBob Donnan/USA TODAY SportsWisconsin must eliminate driving lanes for Kentucky guard Andrew Harrison.

The Kentucky Wildcats are finally coming together at the right time, defeating quality opponents including Michigan, Louisville and Wichita State en route to the Final Four. However, this run may come to an end Saturday, as UK faces one of the nation's most balanced teams in the Wisconsin Badgers.

How can Bo Ryan's team take down the Wildcats? To start, the Badgers will need to effectively employ the swing offense while also focusing on defense and rebounding.

Get into the offensive swing

The swing offense is predicated on having five players on the floor who can pass, catch, cut and shoot the ball. The Badgers play three point guards and rarely turn it over. The premise of the offense is that all five positions are interchangeable. This enables the Badgers to invert their offense and attack matchups. What makes this offense so unique is the skill set of the Wisconsin players.

Frank Kaminsky is the toughest matchup left in the Final Four, and his unique abilities are enhanced by the spacing and flexibility of the swing. When he is guarded by a smaller defender, the offense allows Kaminsky to accept a back screen and get a post-up. When defended by a big man, he can step out as the back screener or step out and shoot the 3-pointer.

Wisconsin plays Sam Dekker, a 6-foot-8 hybrid forward with athleticism, at the 4. Dekker runs the court, can shoot the 3-pointer and can put the ball on the floor. He is an excellent cutter, and his versatility puts so much pressure on the defense. Dekker, combined with Kaminsky in the swing, makes the Badgers' frontcourt one of the most versatile in college basketball.