"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

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

MU Hosts Valparaiso

On Wednesday, MU welcomes Homer Drew's tough Valparaiso Crusaders to the Bradley Center. Valpo is led by 6'8" senior power forward Dan Oppland, and former MU guard Ron Howard. Oppland scored 22 to lead Valpo to a win over Tulane last week, and will be a tough matchup for MU on the blocks. Oppland led the Crusaders with 23 and 11 in a loss at Iowa last week. In the 2003 Blue & Gold Classic, Oppland gave MU fits though the good guys prevailed 75-70.

With the hellish Big East conference slate looming, winning home games is critical for the Golden Eagles. Valpo rolls into town as a formidable, yet beatable opponent -- and offers a chance for a solid out-of-conference win. As Coach Al once said (I think), "Old coaches win at home. That's why they're old coaches."

Time for MU to hold serve.

Here is the GoMarquette.com preview. Of note, "Valparaiso comes into the Marquette contest sporting a 3-1 record. The Crusaders’ leading scorer is Dan Oppland, a 23.3 points per game scorer. He started the year hitting for 26 against IPFW..........A solid inside team, Valparaiso is good on the glass. They grab 40.0 rebounds per game and own a +3.5 rebound advantage. Those numbers are skewed, however, thanks to a 44-16 rebound advantage over Ind.-South Bend of the NAIA. In its three games against NCAA Division I teams, Valparaiso has lost the rebounding battle. That’s not to say the Crusaders can’t rebound. Senior center Mohmaed Kone leads the squad with 9.0 boards per game, grabbing a season best 11 in the opener against IPFW."

Here is the Appleton Post-Crescent's preview.

Here is a feature in the Post-Tribune about Ron Howard coming back to Milwaukee to face his former team.

Here is the Northwest Indiana Times on the game.

John Dodds' Marquette Hoops team previews the game here.

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