Marquette Hosts UConn Tuesday Night In BIG EAST Opener
TV: ESPNU | Radio: 540 ESPN
The Marquette University men’s basketball team (9-3) continues its four-game homestand Tuesday night when the squad welcomes UConn to the BMO Harris Bradley Center for the BIG EAST Conference lidlifter at 7 p.m. CT. ESPNU will feature MU’s eighth national television broadcast of the campaign, with Mike Corey (play-by-play) and LaPhonso Ellis (analyst) calling the action. Following Tuesday’s matchup, the Golden Eagles will wrap up the homestand on Jan. 5 when the team hosts No.15/16 Georgetown at 1 p.m. CT.
Marquette Set For Eighth Season In BIG EAST
Tuesday night’s matchup with UConn tips off Marquette’s eighth year in the BIG EAST Conference.
Picked seventh in the league’s preseason coaches poll, Marquette is the only program to advance to at least the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST Conference Championship in each of the last seven campaigns.
MU is 16-7 all-time in conference openers (Midwestern Collegiate; 1-1, Great Midwest; 3-1, Conference USA; 7-3, BIG EAST; 5-2).
The team defeated UConn in its first-ever BIG EAST game in 2005-06, but fell to the Friars in 2006-07 in the conference lidlifter. Last season, forward Darius Johnson-Odom scored 24 points in a 81-77 victory over Villanova on New Year’s Day in the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Tuesday’s game will mark the fourth time in the last five seasons Marquette has started league play on New Year’s Day at home. The Golden Eagles have claimed each of the previous three meetings (2008-09, 2010-11, 2011-12).
West Virginia edged MU (63-62) on the road in 2009-10 for the team’s other opening night defeat in BIG EAST play.
MU Owns Slight Advantage In All-Time Series
The Golden Eagles and Huskies have met eight times since MU joined the league in 2005-06 and MU holds a slim 5-3 advantage in the series.
Marquette has claimed three of the last four outings, including a pair of matchups in Hartford, Conn. Last season (see box score page 4), senior Jae Crowder led the way with 29 points and 12 rebounds in a 79-64 victory.
No. 5 UConn did post a 76-68 win on Jan. 25, 2011 in the team’s last trip to Milwaukee.
Junior More Accepting Of Charity As A Senior
Senior point guard Junior Cadougan has improved as a player in each of his seasons with the Golden Eagles, but the most visible area of his advancement in 2012-13 comes at the free throw line.
Entering his final campaign with MU, Cadougan owned a 66.3 percent (114-of-172) mark from the charity stripe. Through the first 12 games this year, the Toronto, Ontario, native is knocking down 81.1 percent (30-of-37) of his opportunities from the line and is ranked eighth in the BIG EAST Conference.
Cadougan is one of three players (Davante Gardner and Jamil Wilson) converting on at least 80 percent of their respective chances. Gardner ranks sixth (.816) in the league and MU is third overall (.725) as a squad in the conference.
BIG EAST Continues Support Of Newtown, CT Community
As a unified show of support for the Newtown, Conn., community, BIG EAST men’s and women’s basketball teams will wear green ribbons during the first 26 games of conference play. Student-athletes will wear the ribbons on their shooting shirts during warmups, while coaches and administrative personnel will wear the ribbons throughout their respective games.
The recognition began with the league opener on Dec. 31 between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh and will conclude in mid-January. Marquette will participate Jan. 12 when the team travels to Pittsburgh.