"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Friday, September 30, 2005

Marquette Part of the 2007 Maui Invitational

The 2007 Maui Invitational was announced today and Marquette University will be a participant. Other invitees will be Duke, Illinois, LSU, Arizona State, Oklahoma State, Princeton and Chaminade.

For the complete relase click on the link below.

The 2007 Maui Invitational (click here)

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Big East Athletics Spending

Here's an eye-opener for ya.....MU ranks 14th in the Big East in overall athletics spending. MU spends $15,157,774 on athletics, which is comfortably more than Providence and DePaul, and slightly less than Seton Hall University.

As you'd expect, football playing institutions dominate the spending. Regarding 'basketball-only' universities, Saint John's leads the way at $24,072,910 (love those NYC prices!).

Here is how MU compares to other 'basketball-only' schools in the Big East (at least with universities that do not compete in Division 1 football):

  1. St. John's, $24,072,910
  2. Georgetown, $17,705,058
  3. Villanova, $17,007,533
  4. Seton Hall , $15,260,330
  5. Marquette, $15,157,774
  6. Providence, $14,010,397
  7. DePaul, $13,497,690
If one factors out Villanova and Georgetown (which play competitive non-D1 football), MU's athletics budget is roughly the median for similar institutions.

Interestingly, the Louisville Courier-Journal reports that "in the Big East, all NCAA credits will be combined, and each school will receive an equal share". Basically, MU will receive an equal share of NCAA basketball tournament money going forward -- whether or not it participates. CUSA's formula rewarded individual participants in the tournament. This could mean a boost for MU's athletic budget in future years if the conference remains strong.

Thanks to the Big East Basketball Report for locating this article from the Louisville Courier-Journal. Here's the link to the full article.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Lazar Hayward Commits to Marquette

Marquette secured its first commitment from the class of 2006 when Tom Crean landed fast-rising prep guard Lazar Hayward. Hayward, who will suit up for Notre Dame Prep in Fitchburg, MA, is originally from Buffalo, NY. Hayward chose MU over UConn, Virginia and Seton Hall.

Lazar Hayward is one of the best shooters in the prep ranks, and will fill an immediate need on the MU roster next season (particularly with Steve Novak's graduation). Hayward's prep school program plays at the highest level, and is laden with Division One talent -- he should contribute early for MU.

Scout.com covers the news here (subscribers only - $ well spent, IMHO)

With Hayward in the fold, Crean can now focus his efforts on securing a commitment from talented forward Jonathan Mitchell, the pride of Mount Vernon, NY.

Welcome to Marquette, Lazar.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Is it game time yet?

OK, OK, the blog has been quiet of late. This is what you can get at a university that specializes in basketball. Specialization rules.

While things are relatively calm right now, the intensity and anticipation are building as MU prepares for not-so-midnight madness in just a few weeks. The open gym last weekend at The Al served its purpose -- fans are excited about a team that enters a great new league, with a roster laden with more talented newcomers than MU has seen in years. Newcomers Dominic James, Jerel McNeal, Wesley Matthews, Jamil Lott and Dan Fitzgerald all figure to command big minutes in the MU rotation. And Matt Mortensen and Dwight Burke might just surprise us all (the message boards raved about Burke's play at the open gym).

We're just a few weeks away from what will be one of the more intriguing seasons in recent memory. MU is coming off of two lackluster seasons, and the fandom is hoping to see the trajectory of the program re-established as indisputably onward and upward. To do that, the newbies will have to quickly deliver for MU -- and hopefully bring a quicker, more aggressive style of play than MU has been able to demonstrate in recent years.

The clock is ticking and practice begins soon......I for one can't wait.

Sportsline's Gregg Doyel takes a look at MU in his most recent column - - check it out.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

1977 Championship Game Available on DVD

Need some holiday gifts for that special MU fan in your life? Finally, the 1977 championship game is available in DVD format and is available for only $21.95.

Click here to purchase the 1977 DVD from Vintage Sports Video

Big East News and Notes

The newsflow out of MU these days is slow (well, I guess that's a good thing in some resepcts), so here's a look a few issues from around the Big East, with a few MU items of note:

- MU is hosting an Open Workout on September 17 at the Al McGuire Center to benefit Hurricane Katrina vicitims. Details are here.

- Apparently MU expressed interest in 6'10" PF Rockwell Moody of Maryland....Moody committed to Phil Martelli's program earlier this week.

- Louisville is pushing for a new arena to replace the venerable Freedom Hall. Would you pay $40 million for naming rights to the House that Rick Wants To Build? Many observers are skeptical.

- Georgetown might be turning the corner and re-entering Elite Lane. Gregg Doyel offers a perspective on the fine job that John Thompson III is doing with the Hoyas.

- Attrition by subtraction? Cincy lost one of its most talented incoming players when PF Ivan Johnson decided to the leave the program. True to form, the Bearcats are awaiting a resolution on criminal charges filed against another recruit before determining his eligibility.

- Completely OT, former MU player Marc Marotta is stepping down as Governor Jim Doyle's administration secretary later this month.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Big East Schedule Is Out

MU has four of its first six away from home but enjoys one heck of a home schedule in its inaugural Big East season.

Check it out.

Here is Todd Rosiak's take on the MU schedule. Rosiak also offers these tantalizing recruiting tidbits in the same article:

"Recruiting news: MU is scheduled to visit today with swing men Lazar Hayward of Notre Dame Prep in Fitchburg, Mass., and A.J. Wilson of Mount Zion in St. Paul, Minn.; next week with Doneal Mack of Statesville (N.C.) Christian and JeJuan Brown of Biloxi (Miss.); and also with Jonathan Mitchell of Mt. Vernon (N.Y.) and Raed Mostafa of North Dakota State College of Science. "

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Updates/Previews: Hayward and Mitchell; Another Big East Preview

According to Mike Sullivan of Fox Sports, MU continues to lead for Jonathan Mitchell, the pride of Mount Vernon, NY. Mitchell will visit UVa and Florida within the next month or so before making a decision.

Sullivan also notes that MU leads for Lazar Hayward, whom he thinks might be "the best perimeter shooter on the prep level." Hayward will visit MU later this month, and will visit UConn for not-so Midnight Madness. Here's the full article.

Also, here's a link to CollegeHoopsNet's Big East preview -- specifically the Midwest programs. Their assessment is fair, and they note that "It might take a year for them (Matthews, McNeal and James) to adjust to a new conference and for the freshmen to adjust to a higher level of competition but expect Marquette to make their presence felt in the very near future."

Friday, September 02, 2005

A look back: 2002 Big East Recruiting Classes

Here's one to read over at the Big East Basketball Report -- a look at the current senior class from each team in the conference.