"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

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Marquette Fails and Passes Test

#8 Marquette lost a game most expected to lose today, bowing to #6 Louisville on the road 58-62.

But how Marquette lost should give Warrior nation great hope for our immediate, Dominic James-less future.

Had you been told MU would be without their star PG, would be forced to start a 5'9" shrimp in his place .. and their star SG would have a miserable offensive night, missing 16 of 19 .. you'd have had nightmares of a 30 point thrashing at Freedom Hall.

That didn't happen. While DJ was missed, Marquette did not play like a team with an important cog missing. -- Other than McNeal perhaps trying too hard to make up for DJ's absence, forcing up too many shots that bricked.

This bodes well for MU's future, playing @Pitt, home vs. Syracuse, the BET, and the NCAAs. Simply put: Even without DJ, Marquette took the #6 team in the country down to the wire. -- Had McNeal been able to bring even his C+ offense, the Warriors would have walked out with a W.

Marquette never quit, broke the highly touted Louisville press well, committing only 11 turnovers .. and even managed to tie UL 37-37 on rebounds.

Acker was laudable in his 33 minutes of play, handling the ball well, with 3 assists, 3 rebs, and just 2 turnovers. Jimmy Butler had 6 points and 10 rebounds in 26 minutes off the bench.

Lazar notched another double-double with 16 and 10, on a very efficient 6-11 shooting, while Matthews poured in 19, and was unfortunate in a no-call at the end of the game. (See video below.)

Marquette goes to #1 Pittsburgh on Wednesday with their heads held high, and hopes up.

AP Recap
Box Score
Rosiak Recap

Last shot by Wes .. no foul? You judge:


John said...

Couldn't see the foul. Maybe if Wes kept his form it would of went in. McNeal and Wes both gave up on a play and kind of pouted. Like they were to good to get the ball stolen from them. What was up with that? Not a good example to set for the bench who now has to step up.

justabearguy said...

Yeah -- the no call was fine there. Whoever was jumping out for Louisville was jumping pretty far wide of Matthews, and even Matthews' attempt to jump into the defender caused (at worst) a slight slight bump, not a heckuva lot more.

I'm pretty pleased with the effort, though. I know these last two games finish as losses but they've proven they can compete with these guys, even with DJ. They may not necessarily be better than Louisville, UConn or Pitt but that's really not a drag on Marquette.


Savwa said...

McNeal was way off today. Considering McNeal's unusual performance,trying to work some new guys in they played tough & the w was within reach. MU's perfomance gave me more hope going forward. If anything, this final stretch will allow the team to work in Acker & some more bench players to develop the rotation more as the tourney approaches. Buzz's coaching ability will be more evident going forward also.

frankpos said...

We didn't show our A game today either, guys

but we were impressed by your team ball movement and effort

and Buzz--we like Buzz

(Crean and Deane--no)