The problem was that the Chanticleers couldn't do anything to stop the No. 1-seeded Badgers in an 86-72 loss in the NCAA Tournament on Friday night.
''We made shots we needed to have to be able to pull this off,'' Ellis said, ''but defensively we never could find anything, whether it was our man-to-man, whether it was our zone. Nothing was really effective, so you gotta give them a lot of credit.''
Big Ten player of the year Frank Kaminsky had 27 points and 12 rebounds for his 12th double-double of the season in a performance that was so dominating, he almost made it look easy.
Wisconsin (32-3), the Big Ten's regular-season and tournament champion, will play eighth-seeded Oregon on Sunday in a round-of-32 rematch. Last year the Badgers, on their way to the Final Four, beat the Ducks 85-77 to reach the Sweet 16.
''They're going to be a tough out for whomever,'' Ellis said. ''I saw them in the Final Four last year, and it wouldn't surprise me to see them back there. They're very worthy. You could see them and Kentucky. You're liable to see it. They're that good.''
''We had an excellent year,'' Ellis said. ''When we look back - today hurts, it stings, it stings. But when you look at the whole body of work, I'm proud of this team and what they accomplished.''
The Badgers outscored the Chanticleers 40-24 in the lane and outrebounded them 36-25.
Wisconsin wasn't bothered by Coastal Carolina's changing defenses. The Badgers made 11 of 27 3-pointers, including 8 of 17 while getting out to a 47-32 halftime lead. Dekker matched his career high with four 3s.
Wilson had a chance to get the Chanticleers within 10 points in the second half, but Kaminsky bulled through to block his layup. Wilson landed on the baseline and lay there momentarily looking resigned as play continued in the other direction.
Josh Gasser, Bronson Koenig and Kaminsky then scored easy inside baskets in succession, and suddenly the Badgers were up by 19. Coastal Carolina was able to make it a 14-point game against Wisconsin's reserves.
''We were efficient offensively. We can't ask for much better than that,'' Cameron said. ''It was just their three big men. We couldn't keep them off the glass.''
The Chanticleers were in the tournament for the second straight year and fourth time overall. Last year, also as a No. 16 seed, they led Virginia by 10 points in the first half and by five at halftime before losing 70-59.
They were ahead of Wisconsin 5-4 and 8-7, but it wasn't long before the Badgers' size and strength proved too much for the Big South champions.
Cameron, who is from Racine, Wisconsin, connected on three straight 3-pointers while scoring 11 of his team's first 19 points. The Chanticleers mostly matched Wisconsin possession for possession early and were within 30-24 until Hayes made back-to-back shots to push the lead to double digits.
Coastal Carolina: This is the fourth school coach Cliff Ellis has taken to the tournament. He also coached South Alabama, Clemson and Auburn in the NCAAs. ... This was the first time Ellis coached against Wisconsin in a career that spans 1,127 Division I games. The Chanticleers are now 0-4 all-time in the tournament.
Wisconsin: Wisconsin set a school record with its 32nd win. ... The Badgers, in the tournament for the 17th straight year, are 12-2 in NCAA openers under Bo Ryan. ... They're now 3-0 all-time against Coastal Carolina, having won the games by a combined 86 points.
LONG WAIT TO PLAY
Badgers coach Bo Ryan isn't worried about having to sit around all day.
''Not in a beautiful city like Omaha,'' he said. ''Nice hotel. People are nice. We're OK. As long as they can get us out of here Sunday night and get us back for classes.''
Coastal Carolina's season is over.
Wisconsin plays eighth-seeded Oregon on Sunday in the round of 32.