January 11, 2009
Bohannon excited for challenge of Purdue guards
MADISON, Wis. - Coming off a career day against Northwestern, Wisconsin guard Jason Bohannon hopes to continue his impact on the offensive end of the floor when the Badgers head south to take on Purdue this weekend.
Following Friday afternoon's practice BadgerBlitz.com caught up with the junior and discussed UW's upcoming game, his performance against Northwestern and playing against another guard-oriented team.
Last season Purdue tripped you guys up twice during conference play. With the upcoming game against those guys do you kind of feel like you need to pay them back a little bit this year?
Bohannon: They're a tremendous team. We're looking to get every one we can. Looking back at last year, they were the one team that tripped us up in Big Ten play last year. They return everyone and we know we are going to have to bring our 'A' game to Mackey Arena when we play them.
Is it kind of motivation as this game approaches knowing they were the only team to beat you last season in conference play?
Bohannon: Yeah it is. Looking back at it, they had a great run. They return everyone as I said and they've been nicked up, but I'm sure they'll be ready to play and stuff. We have to come ready to play as well despite last year. It's a different team now and both teams are a little different team. Despite what happened last year, we have to focus on this year right now.
In the preparation for this game I know Robbie Hummel and Chris Kramer have been banged up. Is that kind of prepare for those guys not knowing exactly what you'll get from them?
Bohannon: You know, not really. We're treating it as if they're going to play. We're expecting them to play as much as they can. We're going to treat it like they're full strength right now. That's our best way to prepare for them being at full strength. We're never going to prepare for a team less than what they are.
Historically, UW has not had a great deal of success down there at Mackey Arena. What is it about that place that makes it tough?
Bohannon: It's a tough place to play, a lot of teams struggle there. When you go there, you have to be ready to play. You can't make many mistakes, you have to play smart basketball. We had a close one there last year and hopefully we can pull one out this year.
The other day after the game the other day you talked about scoring other ways than just from beyond the arc. It seems like your shooting percentage is on the rise, too. Are you looking to score more or is that just the flow of the game?
Bohannon: When the opportunity presents itself, I'm willing to take advantage of it. I had some opportunities against Northwestern and I tried taking advantage of it and it's the same with the last couple games. But, a lot of that has to do with just running the swing offense and getting open looks and people finding me. We're doing a good job of moving the ball right now and we're continuing to get better doing that.
Do you ever get a sense going into a game that, 'hey, tonight I'm feeling good, I could have a big game tonight?'
Bohannon: Well, everyone always have their confidence level going out there. If they are shooting well, they feel confident and stuff like that. You can always feel from the environment and the vibe yourself. You have to go in there and treat every game the same and try to provide whatever you can with the team and try to make the most of the opportunities that you have.
Did you impress yourself at all by getting three career highs last game?
Bohannon: Once again, I just took what was there. The rebounds were there, I was at the right place at the right time. With the assists, I was trying to find the open guys and trying not to change anything and luckily they hit the shots.
Going back to Purdue, they are a pretty guard-oriented team similar to Marquette in that fashion with the guards. As a guard yourself, do you kind of look forward to match-ups like this?
Bohannon: Yeah, you know, they're a tremendous team as I said. Anytime you get a challenge to play a great team like Purdue, or any other team for that instance, we're looking forward to it. It's a great chance for ourselves to showcase ourselves and improve as well.
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