Ryan Evans' workday wasn't done when the bus carrying the University of Wisconsin men's basketball team arrived back at the Kohl Center Saturday night.
The senior forward spent about 30 minutes in the gym, working mostly on free throws during a late-night session.
Evans felt terrible after going 1-for-9 from the line during a 60-50 loss to Marquette at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee.
It wasn't the first time this season Evans struggled from the line — he's shooting 31.8 percent — but it was the first time he felt those issues cost the Badgers a game.
"I didn't take it as serious as I probably should have because it was just affecting me more as an individual," Evans said Monday after practice. "But Saturday night, to see it affect my team like it did, that really bothered me (and) I'm sure it bothered a lot of people. But I'm not the type to sit and mope around."
Evans worked with UW assistant coach Gary Close before Monday's practice and made a few tweaks to help feel more comfortable at the line.
But Close can only do so much for Evans because the problem isn't technique, it's mental.
"It's in his head now," UW coach Bo Ryan said. "It isn't because he doesn't care; it isn't because he's not working."
It got so bad for Evans against Marquette that, after missing his first four attempts, he intentionally banked in his only make of the night.
Since making his first two attempts from the line against California on Dec. 2, he's missed 14 of his past 16 attempts. This from a player who shot 81.1 percent (43-for-53) in Big Ten Conference play last season, the eighth-best mark in the league.
"It's like having the yips," UW associate head coach Greg Gard said. "I've had a few of those on the putting green and on the tee, where you can't hit it straight to save your life."
Close, who's often called upon when a player is in a shooting slump, said there's a fine line when it comes to the amount of work that needs to be done to create a breakthrough.
"You just want to be there to support them, maybe try something here or there and get to where he feels comfortable," Close said. "But until he does it in a game … .
"You just work, but not overwork. Take a look at it, but don't overanalyze it. Until he starts making some, he's not going to get real comfortable."
While Evans was the biggest culprit at the free throw line against Marquette, he wasn't the only one for UW. Freshman Sam Dekker was 2-for-5 to drop to 55.6 percent on the season, while the point guard tandem of Traevon Jackson and George Marshall were a combined 1-for-3.
UW finished 9-for-23 to fall to 62.8 percent on the season.
"It's like working for 40 hours and leaving your check in your pocket and not going to deposit it in the bank," Gard said. "We've got to start depositing some of these checks for this work we're doing around the rim."
Evans, for his part, was equal parts honest, insightful and funny Monday while surrounded by reporters asking him about a topic he'd rather not discuss.
It helped Evans' mood when he turned on ESPN Monday morning and saw a clip of a missed free throw by Appalachian State's Brian Okam from a game Saturday against Western Carolina. Okam released a shot with a lot of arc — and it only went about 5 feet before landing in a teammate's hands.
"That helped me out a little bit," Evans said, "but I still know that I need to focus and move forward and take this real seriously."
Evans had a tough time describing just how uncomfortable he felt at the line during the Marquette game. All he knows is it's a feeling he doesn't want to encounter ever again.
"I do see what guys like Dwight Howard feel," Evans said of the Los Angeles Lakers' star center who is shooting a career-worst 48 percent from the line this season. "I'm not really comparing myself to Dwight Howard, but I've got an understanding, because I used to look at those guys like, 'How in the world?' But now I've got an understanding.
"Knowing that, move forward. I've got my teammates behind me and I know they're there for me. It's a good feeling. I'll be able to get out of it."
Bruesewitz still out
Senior forward Mike Bruesewitz, who sat out the loss to Marquette with a concussion, is still waiting on clearance from the UW medical staff to return to practice.
Bruesewitz was injured during last Thursday's practice when he collided with a teammate. Bruesewitz was initially treated for whiplash before it was determined he had a concussion.