In the first
of a 10-part series reviewing the historic 2006-07 men’s basketball
season, assistant director of athletic communications Brian Lucas takes
a look at some of the records that were broken this
I’m a numbers guy. I
got into the job I have today partly because of my love of statistics.
I could read a major league baseball boxscore before I ever delved into
anything Beverly Cleary wrote.
That was one of the
many reasons working with this year’s men’s basketball team was so
special. It seemed as though after every game I would be looking
something up and finding out it was the first time since the early
1900’s that the Badgers did whatever. And eventually, the “since” part
dropped out and it just became “the first time.”
best example of that, in my opinion, is the bottom line, 30 wins.
Coming into the season, UW had never won more than 25 games (in 2003-04
and 2004-05). There were a couple
when the Badgers didn’t reach 30 victories. In the 103-year history of
the Big Ten Conference, only 13 teams have ever won at least 30
As the wins kept piling up,
the records kept falling. The Badgers’ 21-1 start was the best in
school history (in the interest of full disclosure, the 1911-12 and
1913-14 Badgers both finished the season 15-0 so their only downfall
was not playing more games … same with the 1915-16 squad that finished
The biggest reason for the
great start was the school-record 17-game winning streak. The previous
single-season school mark was 15 games set in the two years UW went
15-0 and tied again during the national championship season of 1940-41
when the Badgers won their final 15 games.
victories came national recognition and a steady ascent in the polls.
Wisconsin had not been ranked in the single digits since 1962 and its
highest ranking ever (No. 6) came on Dec. 4 of that season. On Dec. 18,
2006, following a convincing home win over then-No. 2 Pitt, UW moved
into fourth in the Associated Press poll, officially entering rarified
After spending just six weeks in the A.P. Top 10
in school history entering this season, the Badgers were ranked in the
top 10 for 17 weeks, including 12 straight weeks in the top five. The
high point came on Feb. 19 when UW earned its first-ever No. 1 ranking.
In the history of the Associated Press poll, dating back to 1948-49,
only 52 schools have earned the No. 1 ranking.
were so many other records and because I don’t want this to read like a
Bill Simmons column it may seem like I’m glossing over them. But they
are all impressive. 13 Big Ten Conference victories. Team records for
games played, points scored, field goals, free throws and free throw
Alando Tucker practically re-wrote the
record book by himself. Single-season records for points scored, field
goals, field goal attempts and free throw attempts. He would have set
the record for minutes played but his teammate, Kammron Taylor, beat
him by one minute. Tucker, Taylor, Jason Chappell and Michael Flowers
became the first UW players to start 36 games in a season.
Then there are Alando’s career records. Points
scored, field goals, free throws, free throw attempts, offensive
rebounds, games played and started and minutes played. Kam is also on
the career lists for 3-pointers made and attempted, free throw
percentage and games played. To view the complete list of records from
this season, click on the “This Year’s Records” link on the men’s
basketball season review page.
This being the first
of a 10-part series (I know, very ambitious, but I’m just trying to get
back in the good graces of those who expressed their displeasure at the
lack of blogs this season) there is plenty more to cover than dry
numbers. But I wanted to make sure everyone was starting off on the
right foot. That any way you shake it, this season was historically one
of the best in school
Be sure to check out
the 2006-07 men’s basketball season review page here for daily updates
and links to final statistics, records, honors and much