Wisconsin Badgers

David Hookstead | Reporter

The Wisconsin Badgers are national champions.

My women’s hockey team defeated Minnesota 2-0 Sunday afternoon in dominating fashion to win our fifth national title in the past 13 years.

Star Annie Pankowski shredded apart the Gophers, and our neighbors to the west really never had a chance. (RELATED: Watch ‘Miracle On Ice’ Legend Mark Johnson‘s Wisconsin Jersey Retirement Ceremony)

I know that I regularly trash women’s sports, but women’s hockey is different. Whether it’s the national team or the top teams in college, those gals are exciting as hell to watch.

Just days after our hearts were broken by Oregon in March Madness, my beloved Badgers are back on the top of the world. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

What an incredible time to be a Wisconsin Badgers. Five titles since 2006. Mark Johnson really has done something incredible with this program.

Again, I know you’re probably shocked I tuned in for a women’s sporting event, but you just don’t know what you’re talking about if you don’t understand the high level of play in elite women’s hockey.

It’s incredibly entertaining and we’re here for every single second of it. Major props to my ladies back home for taking care of business. I couldn’t be prouder of them.

Finally, Wisconsin star Sophia Shaver is an absolute smoke.

With women like that on our roster, we were winners before they even dropped the puck.

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

It’s time for the Wisconsin Badgers to take a hard look in the mirror, and I’m not sure we’re going to like whatever it is that we end up seeing.

Following our embarrassing loss to Oregon late Friday afternoon in the NCAA tournament, I got out some quick reactions and thoughts. It wasn’t pretty and we shouldn’t be happy. Fans should be disappointed. We should be upset. Anybody who swallowed that loss and is fine isn’t paying attention. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

This is the University of Wisconsin we’re talking about. It’s the crown jewel of the Midwest over the past 25 years. Not a single school in America has more tournament appearances and bowl games appearances than us in the past quarter century.

Yet, we fail to capitalize when it counts.

I’ve taken some time to think about what has happened, so now I’m attacking this with a rational angle and it’s clear to me something has to change.

I’m not saying we have to fire Greg Gard. I don’t think that’s a smart idea at all. What I do think is dangerous and completely unacceptable is the idea that fans should be content with just making the tournament or winning nine football games a season. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

Neither is okay, and neither will ever be tolerated as long as I have a say in what’s going on. We expect to contend yearly for conference champions and national titles in both sports. This past season wasn’t where we need to be in both sports.

Yes, I’m aware that we still had a better basketball season than about 90 percent of the country. We won 23 games this season, but it’s just not good enough. I know most teams would trade places with us in a heartbeat. That’s not the point.

We should be better than 95 percent of the country in our default setting. We’re a top one percent program in both sports when we show up and show out.

My Badgers have to get back to where we were under Bo Ryan when it comes to basketball, and we absolutely have to get back to double digit wins in football. Looking in the mirror and acknowledging failure isn’t ever easy. It’s just not, but it’s necessary.

Major shoutout to Ethan Happ for the past few years. He won’t ever be forgotten. As for the rest of us, there needs to be some serious inward looking to find out where it’s gone wrong and how to stop it from happening ever again.

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The Big Ten has dominated March Madness through the first two days.

Seven teams from the conference advanced to the second round of the tournament. That ties the tournament record, according to ESPN. Michigan State, Purdue, Michigan, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, and Ohio State all advanced. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

Only my beloved Badgers fell short.

As painful as it is for me to admit how bad yesterday was for the Badgers, I’m glad to know the rest of the conference showed up and showed out for Big Ten country.

Putting seven teams into the second round is absolutely absurd, and has only happened two other times in tournament history. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

We’re now over 20 percent of the remaining field. Not bad for a conference that apparently can’t do anything athletically, according to the peanut gallery that is incredibly vocal.

You might as well shut down the internet if the B1G continues to tear it up because the gloating is going to be next level. I can promise you that much. Yes, my Badgers went down, but everybody else is picking up the slack.

This is March, and this is when we take over. I hope the critics saved their receipts. It looks like they’re going to be eating some of their words.

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The basketball season for the Wisconsin Badgers is officially over after losing to Oregon in the first round of the NCAA tournament Friday.

I just want to be totally clear here for everybody. This my reaction for all of you as soon as I was able to give it to you all. Was it easy to stomach? No. Am I happy? Absolutely not, but we can get into all of that later.

Right now, I just want to say thank you to Ethan Happ and the other seniors and everybody else who poured their hearts and souls into this program. Today was a crushing day. There’s no doubt. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

I’m sitting here right now after watching that game, and I’m literally at a loss for words. Despite all our problems this season, I still thought my Badgers had the juice to make some noise today.

I was wrong, and that’s something I’ll just have to carry with me. This isn’t easy. I expect excellence, and I expect results.

The Badger fandom got neither today. Again, we can dig into that later. I know people will be calling for Greg Gard to be fired. I’d encourage them to slow down. Until I hear of a better option, I suggest we let the man keep getting to work.

Just know this Wisconsin nation, I am just as upset as all of you and we will figure this out. I can promise you that. The phone calls are already being made. Today was brutal. There’s no question, but now it’s up to us to make sure it never happens again.

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The Wisconsin Badgers take the first step toward a national title Friday when they play Oregon in the NCAA tournament.

It’s time to show up and show out in March Madness. Right now, everything we want is right in front of us. March is all about playing to earn the right to play 40 more minutes of basketball. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

That begins today when we step on the court to play the Ducks. My Badgers are going to obliterate Oregon. If there’s one thing pretty much everybody back home is good at, it’s killing ducks. We smoke home like it’s going out of style.

It won’t be any different on the basketball court. Ethan Happ, Khalil Iverson, Brad Davison and the rest of the crew with Greg Gard are going to stomp all over our opponent.

We might not have the sexiest style of play, but we get the job done. Trust me, there’s nobody out there who wants to play us. I can promise you that much. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

Doubt us at your own peril if you don’t believe me. You think this is a game? This isn’t a game. This is college basketball in the big dance.

This is where it gets started. In the immortal words of Herb Brooks, “Great moments are born from great opportunity, and that’s what you have here tonight, boys. That’s what you’ve earned here tonight.”

Gentlemen, it’s going to be biblical. Tune in at 4:30 EST on TBS to watch it all go down. You know that I’ll be locked in with a cold beer in my hand.

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

Barack Obama thinks the Duke Blue Devils are going to win March Madness.

The 44th POTUS released his bracket Thursday morning, and it’s actually not too bad. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but my bracket shares a shocking number of similarities with Obama’s. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

He’s got a Final Four of Duke, Michigan, Tennessee and North Carolina.

My only beef here, and it’s a big one, is the fact that he has Oregon beating Wisconsin in the first round. My man, that just isn’t going to happen. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

I’ll have a piece later today explaining in-depth why that won’t occur, but I’m disappointed that Obama, a man who prides himself as a basketball fan, would think the Ducks have a chance. Truly embarrassing.

Say whatever you want about Obama’s time as the President, I think it’s awesome that he is a big basketball fan. We might disagree on just about everything politically, but he does seem like a guy that would be fun to kick with some beers and the game on.

I wish I could criticize him more here, but I just can’t. Our brackets are too similar. So, in this case, major props to Obama (other than his Wisconsin pick) for knowing what’s up.

Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The Big Ten has dominated the college basketball attendance numbers for nearly a decade.

A new study from from Grand Canyon University compiled a bunch of data from the past few years on college basketball, and two numbers stood out to me the most.

First, the B1G has led college basketball in total attendance since 2012. Secondly, they’ve led average per-game attendance since 2011, with Wisconsin at top with over 17,000 a game over that time period for the conference. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

You just hate to see it, don’t you? You just hate seeing all these undeniable facts and numbers get published that just continue to show the superiority of the Big 10.

Cry all you want, SEC. Let the tears flow. Let them come down! It won’t make a difference. The numbers never lie, and we’re all over the place when it comes to our level of domination.

Rubbing it in will honestly never get old. It’s almost like I was put on this planet to remind everybody how much better the B1G is than everybody else.

Quick trivia question for all of you. Do you know the conference with the most teams in the big dance this year? Oh, yeah, that’d be the B1G.

Let me know if you guys need me to ship you some tissues. I’d be my great honor to help you all wipe away your tears.

You just hate to see it!

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

March Madness begins Thursday, and that’s great news for everybody.

This is the time of year that we wait for and dream about for months on end. This is the time of year that separates the boys from the men. This is what college basketball is all about.

A total of 64 teams (I’m ignoring dumb play-in games) will begin their journey to a championship today. Of them, 65 will fall short and fail. Only one will cut down the nets. The stakes couldn’t get any higher.

The first matchup will between Minnesota and Louisville shortly after noon, and it’ll only get crazier from there. You can see the full slate of games here(RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

I also want to congratulate all of you who will be taking this journey with me for another run through March and into early April. The eyes of the world are upon us as we prepare to do battle against one another.

While I might hate you all on the court, we share a bond as college basketball fans that is simply unbreakable. We walked on the moon and we play basketball. Find me another country that can say the same.

You can’t.

I hope you all are even a fraction as excited as I am. We’re going to drink some beers, debate nonstop for the next three weeks, win some money (probably won’t come out on top) and maybe we’ll even get smitten with a few young ladies that share our desires for great post defense, boxing out and working the shot clock. If only we could be so lucky.

As for me and by Wisconsin faithful, we’re hunkered down and ready for a long siege if it comes to it. We’re at DEFCON 2, gentlemen. With any luck, we’ll be at DEFCON 1 by the time the sun goes down at the end of the weekend. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

The further our teams advance, the higher the stakes will get. Welcome to the world of college sports. My Badgers are going to show up and show out, and I don’t care who we steamroll in the process.

Doubt us at your own peril.

Get your beers cold, get your bets placed and get ready for a hell of a lot of fun. This is what we train for. Now, it’s time to go out there and execute our way to a championship.

Godspeed to all of you. It’s been a hell of a ride, and it’s been my honor to share this season with each and every one of you.

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The NCAA tournament begins Thursday, and I couldn’t be more excited.

Throughout the history of March Madness, there have been lots of incredible moments. There’s Christian Laettner’s shot to beat Kentucky for Duke, North Carolina State’s improbable run, Wisconsin upsetting Kentucky, Butler making back-to-back finals and so many more. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

Luckily, there’s a great video that captures all of those chilling moments for the fans. If you’re a fan of college basketball, then you need to see this video.

It’s the perfect way to prepare for the games on the horizon. Give it a watch below. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

Who else is ready to run through a wall right now? I’m so amped. I’m not sure that I can wait until tomorrow. I want the games to start, and I want them to start right now.

There are always so many great storylines to follow. Who will win it all? Who will go down in flames? These are the questions that keep us on the edge of our seats as every second ticks off the clock.

The tournament is all about the highest of highs (beating Kentucky), and the lowest of lows (losing to Duke in the title game). You have to keep your head on a swivel at all times.

I don’t want to be friends with anybody who disagrees with the monumental importance of this sporting event.  Check out the entire bracket below, and let us know in the comments your favorite memories.

Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

Large portions of the country think Duke will be cutting down the nets when March Madness ends.

Sportsbetting.ag put together a map with each state’s most popular championship prediction based off geotagged Twitter data, and Duke was the favorite in 20 states. (RELATED: The March Madness Bracket Has Been Released)

Gonzaga is in second with nine states picking them to win. You can see the full map below.

March Madness map (Credit: SportsBetting.Ag)

March Madness map (Credit: SportsBetting.Ag)

First off, is anybody even surprised Duke is the heavy favorite in nearly half the country? I don’t think so. I’ve been saying for the past few days that they look borderline unstoppable, and anybody with eyes probably agrees.

Coach K’s guy’s out here determined to take souls.

Secondly, I love the fact Wisconsin is all in on the Badgers, a five seed, winning the tournament. That’s the kind of confidence that sets us apart from the rest of the country.

Sure, we’ve looked terrible at times down the stretch. You think that’s going to slow us down one bit? Not a snowball’s chance in hell. (RELATED: Watch Wisconsin Beat Kentucky In The 2015 Final Four)

We’re all in. Put Duke, Virginia or anybody else in front of us, and we’ll do what we always do. Ball out and win games when the lights are on and the stakes are high.

Finally, I love the delusion of people in Nevada. The Wolfpack are a seven seed, and people think they actually have a legit shot at winning the whole damn thing.

Good for them. Life must be easy when you live with that level of delusion. I almost envy that kind of blind optimism because Nevada’s best case scenario is to get murdered in the second round by Michigan.

I guess Vegas really can rattle the brain after enough time.

Source: The Daily Caller

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