Five story lines
Little history: This will be only the fourth meeting between the schools but their third in the past eight seasons and their second this season. Duke got 22 points from Tyus Jones in an 80-70 victory on Dec. 3 in Madison. Traevon Jackson had a career-high 25 points for Wisconsin. The Badgers' only victory over Duke came in 2009, when they beat the Blue Devils 73-69 at the Kohl Center. This is their first NCAA tournament meeting.
Men in the middle: Wisconsin's Frank Kaminsky and Duke's Jahlil Okafor played to a virtual draw in their first meeting this season. Kaminsky had 17 points and nine rebounds but was 5-for-12 from the field. Okafor had 13 points and six boards but was 6-for-8 from the field. "It should be pretty interesting for purists of the game to watch two bigs like that go against one another," Badgers coach Bo Ryan said.
Badgers' Big Two: Kaminsky (22.2 points per game) and Sam Dekker (20.6 per game) are the two top scorers in this year's NCAA tournament. They have combined to make 75 of 131 field goals (57.3 percent), 21 of 41 three-pointers (51.2 percent) and 43 of 53 free throws (81.1 percent). They have carried the Badgers to only their second national championship game appearance and their first in 74 years.
Youth vs. experience: Will the experience of Kaminsky, Jackson and Josh Gasser (seniors), Dekker (junior) and Nigel Hayes and Bronson Koenig (sophomores) be the difference for Wisconsin? Or will the Blue Devils' high-scoring freshman trio of Okafor (17.5 points per game), Justise Winslow (12.7) and Jones (11.5) be able to cope with the pressure? They have so far.
D-E-F-E-N-S-E: Duke has held its five NCAA tournament opponents to 55.0 points per game on 37.4 percent shooting. "This group has found an identity defensively," assistant coach Jon Scheyer said. "I don't know in the beginning of the year if we had such a hunger to stop people or loved it as much. I think now, we love stopping people and playing defense, and that's something you can really see with this team."