"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, January 01, 2023

New Year at the Smart Pavilion

Stevie Mitchell led Marquette to victory at the Smart Pavilion
 Photo by Matt Slocum | Associated Press

It was a great week for Marquette as they comfortably handled Seton Hall at home and went on the road to get a second consecutive win at Villanova's Finneran Pavilion. For context to how good that second win is, since the Big East Reformation in 2013-14, Big East opponents are now just 3-47 at the Finn. However, under Coach Shaka Smart, Marquette is 2-0. That means the rest of the league is 1-47 playing Villanova in that building. That makes it official, Villanova has to rename the building the Smart Pavilion. Sorry, I don't make the rules.

After ringing in the New Year in style, Marquette gets another trip to a campus gym, playing St. John's at Carnesecca Arena on Tuesday before returning home to take on Georgetown at the Fiserv on Saturday. These are opportunities for Marquette to solidify their spot in the S-Curve before a massive opportunity week with a pair of projected protected seeds in 1-Seed Connecticut and 4-Seed Xavier around the corner.

Marquette is up to 27 on our S-Curve and a projected 7-Seed. In the bracket, they have an interesting path that begins with Bobby Hurley ahead of potential matchups between former Texas coaches Smart and Rick Barnes in the second round with the winner likely getting Texas in the Sweet 16. Let's dig in:

And here's the full bracket. East plays West, South plays Midwest in the Final Four.

NIT 1-Seeds: Wake Forest, Pittsburgh, Boise State, Rutgers

NIT 2-Seeds: UNLV, Kentucky, UCF, Colorado

Multibid Leagues

Big 10: 9

Big 12: 8

SEC: 7

Big East: 5

ACC: 5

Pac-12: 4

Mountain West: 3

American: 2

WCC: 2

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