Marquette Hosts Purdue Tuesday In Gavitt Tipoff Games
Nov. 13, 2017
The Marquette University men’s basketball team (1-0, 0-0 BIG EAST) returns to action Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. CT when the squad hosts Purdue (2-0, 0-0 Big Ten) at the BMO Harris Bradley Center as part of the Gavitt Tipoff Games series between the BIG EAST and Big Ten. FS1 will feature the program’s first national television broadcast of the campaign, with Brian Anderson (play-by-play) and Stephen Bardo (analyst) calling the action.
Gavitt Tipoff Games Series Enters Third Year
The Gavitt Tipoff Games is a unique early-season series played between the two conferences and named in honor of Hall of Famer Dave Gavitt, founder of the BIG EAST and basketball visionary.
The annual series features battles between local foes and attractive intersectional matchups. Among the 16 participating schools, 11 played in the NCAA tournament last year and two played in the NIT. Five of the games are matchups where both teams are coming off NCAA berths. The 11 NCAA teams are: Minnesota, Providence, Purdue, Marquette, Butler, Maryland, Creighton, Northwestern, Seton Hall, Xavier and Wisconsin.
MU didn’t play in the series last year, but hosted Iowa in 2015-16.
Marquette-Purdue Series Memorable For Both Sides
While Marquette and Purdue haven’t met on the court in nearly 50 years, knowledgeable fans on both sides more than likely remember the most recent matchup.
The Boilermakers claimed a 75-73 overtime victory on March 15, 1969 in the NCAA Mideast Regional final courtesy of a buzzer-beating jumper by Rick Mount. Marquette had defeated Murray State and No. 7 Kentucky in the tourney, but Al McGuire’s squad came up just short in its bid for a first-ever Final Four trip. Marquette was led by legendary George Thompson, who scored 28 points in his final collegiate game.
Purdue has claimed each of the eight meetings between the two programs and the series dates back to the 1931-32.
Despite the amount of time since the last contest, Purdue is very familiar with the BMO Harris Bradley Center, which hosted the NCAA tournament in 2016-17. The Boilermakers claimed wins over Vermont and Iowa State before falling to Kansas in the Sweet 16.
Roster Transition Still A Work In Progress For Young Team
While the Golden Eagles are entering their fourth season under head coach Steve Wojciechowski, the team still finds itself working through the final stages of the transition (only one senior - Andrew Rowsey).
For the first time, the roster is completely comprised to players recruited by Wojciechowski and his staff. However, only two of those individuals (Haanif Cheatham and Matt Heldt), own more than one season of experience in a Marquette uniform. Sophomores Sam Hauser and Markus Howard were significant contributors in their respective debut campaigns, but only Cheatham has more career starts (58) among the returnees.
Of teams in all of NCAA Division I with one-or-fewer seniors, only seven (Kentucky and Auburn lead with 12) have a larger total of freshmen and sophomores. Marquette’s roster features nine players who are either in their first or second seasons of eligibility and five teams have 10.
Marquette’s quartet of departures (Luke Fischer, Jajuan Johnson, Katin Reinhardt and Duane Wilson) left with it a wealth of playing experience, having accounted for 328 total appearances and 184 starting assignments.
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