Marquette (10-7) at Butler (10-7)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 18, 2 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Hinkle Fieldhouse (10,000) -- Indianapolis, Indiana.
Television: CBSSN. Home Record: Marquette 8-1, Butler 6-3. Away Record:
Marquette 1-4, Butler 2-2. Neutral Record: Marquette 1-2, Butler 2-2.
Conference Record: Marquette 2-2, Butler 0-5. Series Record: Marquette leads,
GAME NOTES: The Butler Bulldogs go back to the drawing board, as they continue
their quest for that elusive first win in Big East Conference play, this time
against the Marquette Golden Eagles at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
Butler has not received a warm welcome from its new conference foes, the team
having suffered defeats in all five of its Big East bouts. The Bulldogs'
losing ways in league play has dropped them to 10-7 overall. Regardless of how
this game turns out, they will be back in action on Tuesday at Providence.
Marquette is certainly familiar with the difficulty of playing in the Big
East, and it has received another lesson early this season. The Golden Eagles
escaped with a 67-66 win over Seton Hall last Saturday to earn a 2-2 split of
their first four conference tests. The win was the 20th straight at home for
Marquette against Big East rivals. A clash with Georgetown is next on the
This is a rematch of one of the more exciting bouts of last year's NCAA
Tournament. The Golden Eagles escaped with a 74-72 victory to advance to the
Sweet 16 and improve to 15-12 all-time against the Bulldogs.
Although they shot just 37.5 percent from the floor in the second half against
Seton Hall, the Golden Eagles were able to hold on for the win thanks to a 9-
of-10 showing from the free-throw line in the period. Todd Mayo (19 points)
and Jamil Wilson (16 points, 11 rebounds) led the way to victory.
The Golden Eagles, who held the Pirates to 41.4 percent shooting, have made it
a habit of tightening the reins on defense. They are limiting opponents to
just 63.2 ppg and 39.4 percent shooting this season, ranking among the top-40
in the country in each category. However, they are in the bottom half of the
Big East in scoring (71.1 ppg) themselves. Davante Gardner (13.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg)
leads the team in scoring, shooting 54.4 percent from the floor. Although he
has had marked success as a reserve, Gardner has begun to get more play in the
starting rotation. Wilson (11.6 ppg, 5.1 rpg) and Mayo (9.8 ppg) are the next
Butler got to witness the exceptional play of Doug McDermott first-hand in its
88-60 loss to Creighton last time out. McDermott netted 28 points in the
contest and the Bulldogs shot just 35.3 percent from the field, with Kellen
Dunham's 12 points leading the way.
The 88 points the Bulldogs let up to Creighton was far beyond their normal
production on defense. Normally a stout squad in that area, Butler is holding
foes to 68.4ppg and 44.7 percent shooting this season. Dunham (18.4 ppg), who
is fourth in the Big East in scoring, is the team's top offensive threat,
although he is shooting at just a 39.5 percent clip from the field. Khyle
Marshall (15.6 ppg, 5.6 rpg) is shooting a far superior 54.7 percent, but he
gets most of his shots in close to the basket. There are no other double-digit
scorers on the roster, although Kameron Woods (8.7 ppg, 9.7 rpg) is a constant
threat for a double-double.
Marquette may not be the powerhouse in the conference that many predicted, but
its trio of solid scorers and strong defensive acumen should give the Golden
Eagles enough of a push to get past the Bulldogs.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Marquette 68, Butler 63
01/18 10:21:49 ET
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