Marquette had an eFG% of 67% last night behind great three-point shooting from Jae Crowder (4-7 treys and 27 points), Darius-Johnson-Odom (4-6, 19)and Todd Mayo (2-2, 14 in just 15 minutes). But MU continues to explode when they steal the ball.
Blue led MU to seven steals – and MU turned all seven steals into points in a total of 32 seconds of action following the steals. That means that after an MU steal, the Warriors scored an average of 1.57 points per possession (to a still impressive 1.24 points per possession on all other trips), and scored at a pace of 0.344 points per second or 825 points per game. Here is a list of the seven steals, and how many seconds it took to either be fouled or score after each steal:
|12:57 D. Wilson||1|
|16:59 Blue (2nd half)||13, 16|
|Ave seconds before score or foul||4.1|
On the next-to-last steal it took Jacksonville 13 seconds to foul, and then they fouled again 3 seconds later to result in a free throw hit. Here is the breakdown of points per possession.
Blue leads MU in rebounds, assists and steals
For a second straight game it was Vander Blue who finally secured victory against a pesky opponent. This one did not come down to the final minute like the Norfolk State game, but Jacksonville was within 28-31 with less than a minute to go in the half before Blue had a steal and assist to DJO, and was still hanging within 35-48 with 15 minutes to go in the game – and then Vander Blue took over.
With 14:56 to play, he came up with his fourth steal of the game – one for every six minutes on the court – and two seconds later laid it in at the other end for a 50-35 lead.
With 14:40 to play Blue ripped down one of his game high 9 rebounds, and worked it to DJO, who passed to Jae Crowder for a 3-pointer to make it 35-53.
With 13:53 Blue responded to a Jacksonville basket by getting the ball back down the court and kicking to DJO for a trey to make the score 37-56 on one of Blue’s team-high 7 assists.
In just over a minute, Blue had scored, assisted, rebounded, stolen the ball en route to leading the team in the latter three categories. MU was off to the races and an 88-56 win.
Can Marquette turn Wisconsin over and speed the game up Saturday?
Marquette may have to get some steals and breakaway baskets against Wisconsin, because the Badgers are the best team in the country at shooting percentage allowed (eFG% = 33.2%) and at defensive rebounding (81.9% of opponents misses rebounded by Badgers). They don’t let you make shots, and they don’t let you grab your miss. They are also one of the best 10 in the country at protecting the ball (turn it over on only 14.8% of trips).
So MU will need DJO, Jae and Todd Mayo to continue their fantastic scoring against a very tough defense, but they also need Vander Blue to help MU get a few steals and easy baskets in his return to Madison for the first time since turning down the Badgers for Marquette.
Marquette did once again allow an opponent to grab too many offensive rebounds last night (35.1%), which will bring back memories of last year’s second half against Wisconsin. However, I believe the bigger key to victory will be if Wisconsin can protect the ball and grind the game to below their average 59 trips down the court, or if MU can get it closer to their 70 trips per game average by disrupting the most disciplined attack out there.