"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, February 18, 2005

Another Classic Battle

Marquette and Louisville have given college hoops fans several terrific finishes in the last decade, and last night was no exception. Of course, classic battles are easier to take if your team wins. Unfortunately for Marquette fans, the Warriors squandered an 11 point lead in the last 5:41 en route to a 64-61 defeat at the hands of the Louisville Cardinals. Incredibly, MU only made one field goal in the last 9+ minutes and was a disappointing 61% from the free throw line.

Looking back to the last three games, MU lost two of them in the closing seconds and won one at the buzzer. In both losses, TCU and Louisville, MU held a substantial lead late in the game -- making the losses sting even more. One would expect MU to be stronger late in games with veterans like Diener, Novak, Chapman and Townsend on the court.

Regardless, with four games left, MU likely has to win out to have any shot at the NCAA tournament, and even that might not be enough. It feels like this team is so close to breaking through, but again, any positive momentum was disrupted by poor play down the stretch (see Arizona, Charlotte, TCU). Here's hoping Crean's guys are geared up and ready to go for this weekend's tilt with DePaul. Its time to excorcise the Blue Demons and close this season strong.

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