Marquette Returns Home To Host IUPUI Saturday
Dec. 11, 2013
TV Info: FOX Sports 1 | Radio Info: 540 ESPN
The Marquette University men’s basketball team (5-4, 0-0 BIG EAST) opens a brief two-game homestand Saturday afternoon when the squad hosts IUPUI (4-7, 0-0 Summit) at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. FOX Sports 1 will feature the 2 p.m. CT broadcast, with Cory Provus (play-by-play) and former MU head coach Kevin O’Neill (analyst) calling the action. Following Saturday’s outing, the team will welcome Ball State to Milwaukee on Dec. 17 before heading to Las Vegas for a Dec. 21 matchup with New Mexico.
Marquette-IUPUI To Meet For Second Time
Marquette and IUPUI have met on just one occasion on the basketball court, with the Golden Eagles posting a 76-68 victory (Nov. 10, 2007) over the Jaguars to begin the 2007-08 campaign.
MU guard Jerel McNeal led all scorers with 20 points in that matchup and IUPUI was led by George Hill’s 19 points. Hill left at the conclusion of the season for the NBA and is currently with the Indiana Pacers. The Golden Eagles are 21-2 all-time versus teams currently in the Summit League.
Challenging Non-League Schedule Continues
Marquette’s four losses this season have come to teams currently in possession of a 33-3 combined overall record and three of the programs are among those ranked in the top-25 polls.
No. 3/2 Ohio State (8-0), No. 4/6 Wisconsin (10-0) and No. 25/24 San Diego State (7-1) are also in possession of nationally ranked RPIs. Still remaining before BIG EAST Conference play is a Dec. 21 outing in Las Vegas against New Mexico, which is currently 7-1 on the year and ranked 10th in the RPI.
Offense Has Been The Difference In 2013-14 Setbacks
Marquette’s effort at the defensive end has been fairly consistent early in 2013-14 and as a result the team ranks among the league leaders in several categories.
Where the team has struggled, however, is at the offensive end of the floor. In the squad’s five victories, the team is averaging 79.4 points per outing, as compared to just 58.8 points per game in the four losses. MU’s shooting percentages from the field are also significantly lower in the quartet of setbacks and the team is averaging just 8.5 assists per night in losses, a number that jumps to 18.0 in victories.
Otule’s Move Up Blocks List May Have Completed
With a pair of swatted shots at Wisconsin on Dec. 7, senior center Chris Otule moved into fourth place all-time at Marquette with 120 blocks.
Unfortunately for the Richmond, Texas, native, Michael Wilson (119, 1978-82) may have been the final former MU player Otule will have the opportunity to pass. Third on the list is Faisal Abraham (172, 1993-97) and second is Amal McCaskill (175, 1991-92, 1993-96).
The school’s all-time leader, Jim McIlvaine, has witnessed nearly all of Otule’s blocks as a member of MU’s radio broadcast team. McIlvaine’s 399 swats are by far tops in the Marquette record book and 22nd most in NCAA history.
Comeback Falls Short In Loss At Rival Wisconsin
Marquette trailed by as many as 11 points throughout the second half at Wisconsin on Dec. 7, including a 55-44 deficit with 5:50 left in regulation.
Powered by a game-high 22 points (12 in final 11 minutes) from senior forward Jamil Wilson, the Golden Eagles closed the gap to 57-54 with 2:08 remaining. Unfortunately, that is the close MU would get after UW’s Frank Kaminsky drained a 3-pointer as the shot clock was winding down on the next possession. The Badgers converted on their free throw opportunities down the stretch and finished with the six-point win.
Anderson Continues To Develop His Game
Junior forward Juan Anderson is enjoying his best personal start to a season during his three-year tenure, contributing at both ends of the court.
The Oakland, Calif., native’s season-to-date has included a near double-double in the win over George Washington and a pair of double-digit scoring efforts. He has grabbed five-or-more boards in seven of the squad’s last eight outings in an average of just 16.4 minutes per night.
Anderson appeared in 24 games off the bench as a freshman, started 31 of the team’s 35 outings in 2012-13 and has been on the court for the opening tip six times this year.