"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, April 20, 2021

This So Called Marquette Roster Exodus

Theo John is going to Duke. Good for him. 

No, really I mean it. 

The young man gave Marquette everything for four years and now he gets a chance to play at one of the blue bloods and a free year towards a masters degree at Duke to go along with his Marquette degree.

What bothers my make believe gold alumni sweater vest was the headline announcing his Duke arrival. Also the article focuses more on Marquette's roster additions and subtractions and less on what John can bring to Duke. I wonder if this happens to be a coincidence considering this is from the Durham perspective and Marquette just happens to recently fire a Duke legend.

Anyways, it is a Marquette basketball exodus folks. 

Yep, four players have left the program and one is thinking about the NBA as new head coach Shaka Smart shakes up the roster to meet his programs needs. Calling it an exodus is a bit of a stretch and doesn’t even take into account any context whatsoever.

A roster exodus is like what is happening at Cincinnati where the players are fleeing a toxic situation. 

What is happening at Marquette is it’s three seniors got an extra year of eligibility because of COVID-19 and have chosen to use it at other programs. In any other year, it would be called replacing departing seniors.

Also Jamal Cain, Koby McEwen and John first made it clear they were not using that extra year. When they most likely found out most overseas teams have US players sitting at home waiting for restrictions to be lifted and therefore blocking their route to an immediate pro career, they smartly decided to take their extra year. 

Plus, Cain considered coming back but decided it was better to play closer to his hometown and most likely be the man at Oakland. Hardly fleeing the program.

Symir Torrence announced his departure before Wojo’s firing. Even then, he considered returning when Shaka was hired but the prior head coach created a bad taste about MU that he couldn't get out. I charge that departure to Wojo and not Smart.

Dawson Garcia is making a smart move by testing the NBA Draft waters. He is most likely to hear go back to school and hit the weight room but what is wrong with getting some feedback on his game and taking a chance on impressing one team enough to maybe take a gamble on him and making him a millionaire?

If Garcia returns, then yes. someone has to go because Marquette is at the 13 scholarship limit. Even then that is one player leaving under Shaka (If Greg Elliot gets granted a roster exemption then no one has to leave).

Really to reach exodus status it would take Shaka landing more players in the transfer portal (Like transfer guard Darryl Morrsell of Maryland), or another incoming recruit along with Garcia’s return. Then that means more players got to go but do we want to be the type of fan base hoping to get rid of players (Got to give credit @brutus_87to98 for that take)?

On a related note, Shaka's recruiting haul will bring seven new faces to Fiserv Forum next season. The question I keep getting is with seven new players is Marquette better, worse or a push? I would say talent wise they are better and poised to have some big seasons ahead with Shaka’s haul. MU will have some growing pains next season as Shaka implements his style of play, five freshman learn the college game and everyone learns to play together. They do have the talent to compete for a NCAA appearance next season if they can narrow the learning curve.

Only time will tell though. Until then, I guess we should just be worried about this roster exodus.

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