“Captain America.” That’s the nickname his teammate Frank Kaminsky gave him, because of everything he does for the Wisconsin Badgers. While Gasser doesn’t get any national spotlight what so ever, which is weird for a guy called “Captain America”, he could be the most important part to the Badgers success.
Gasser, who has been at the University of Wisconsin since 2010, is now finally a senior playing his final year at Wisconsin after he red-shirted his junior season after tearing his ACL during practice. He was recently named to his third Big Ten all-defensive team which is a record for a Wisconsin Player. Speaking of records, Gasser is the only player in Wisconsin school history to record a triple double, as he had 11 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists in Wisconsin’s 2011 win over North Western as a freshman.
The last freshman to record a tripe-double in the Big Ten (Wisconsin’s conference), was the legendary Magic Johnson, who had 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists in Michigan State’s game versus Detroit in 1977.
“I just went out there and played, went through the same routines. Northwestern’s a tough team to play against, the offense is hard to cover, especially the first time covering it, but the older guys helped me out. I got beat a couple of times, but they told me to stick with it, and the credit goes to them,” said Gasser following his triple-double.
Gasser’s never really been explosive on offense and he realizes that, but his defense has been frustrating guards in college basketball since 2010. Whenever people praise him for his defense, he can’t help but feel great even though he down plays most things he accomplishes for Wisconsin.
“Yeah, that’s a great feeling,” Gasser said. “I can definitely tell when guys get a little frustrated just with the way they play. I can definitely remember most of the games this year and in my career where guys have just kind of talked to themselves under their breath, talking to their teammates, kind of give you a forearm or something like that. That’s when you know you’ve got tcaqlhem a little bit.”
Some of the things Josh Gasser has down played include him hitting 1,000 career points in his college career at Wisconsin, which he and only 40 other players have accomplished in Wisconsin history. Gasser keeps the Wisconsin family united, and you can tell by what former and old teammates have said about him.
“That’s the type of guys you need. Guys with that fire and passion and to get stops on the defensive end.” – Sam Dekker.
Gasser’s passion was on display yet again today in Wisconsin’s game versus Michigan State for the Big Ten title. With the Badgers missing the shot, the ball was headed out of bounds and was going to be Michigan State’s ball if no Badgers player went after it, and the game might have been over for Wisconsin. Josh Gasser saved the ball from going out miraculously, leading to huge free throws by guard Bronson Koenig.
Sure, his foot was on the line and you can make all the arguments you want that if the referees called it out of bounds Wisconsin would’ve lost, but Gasser’s energy and passion on the play goes above all. There would be no better way for Gasser to go out then winning the national title with the Badgers in his senior year, especially after he does.
Most guys want to be the most explosive guy on the team and get all the attention and are upset if they don’t end up getting what they want, but Josh Gasser is the uniquest player in college basketball for being fine with being a glue guy. Captain America hopes to go out a unique way too after coming up just short last year.
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