Five Things About Marquette Golden Eagles’ Upcoming Year
At the end of last season, Marquette Golden Eagles had a ton of hype heading into next season. After Virginia dramatically won the National Championship, Marquette found themselves as a top ten team in the way-too-early polls. The hype was real with Markus Howard, the Hauser brothers, Sacar Anim plus key transfers coming. This all changed as the Hausers brothers decided to leave the program. People immediately walked out on the chance of Marquette having a successful season. Golden Eagles lost the respect of the national media. But in reality, this Golden Eagles team can be very good this season. Although, this will not be your older brother’s Marquette team. Here are things to watch this season.
1. Markus Howard’s run to the National Player of the Year – Cassius Winston of Michigan State is the favorite for the National Player of the Year, but that doesn’t mean Howard cannot make a run at it. Howard has the keys to the Marquette car. While the hero ball can get out of control, there is something special when Howard gets hot and rolling in a game. Howard should have a chip on his shoulder heading into this game. From the Ja Morant embarrassment, Hauser brother drama to Myles Powell getting too much attention, this should all fuel Howard’s season.
2. Can Marquette take down Villanova? – People might think it’s unrealistic for Marquette to win the Big East. In reality, it is within reach. Villanova has a ton of talent on their team like usual but there are a lot of unknowns. Seton Hall is the most overrated team in college basketball, and their difficult non-conference could mean things will be off the rails sooner rather than later. Xavier has some promise, but again, they do not have the complete talent that Marquette does this season. T-Rank and KenPom are both high on the Golden Eagles’ season. If you don’t believe in this team, proceed with caution.
3. Brendan Bailey hype is very, very real – People are going to know Brendan Bailey’s name super quick. You are also going to hear from every announcer in the next three months about how Bailey’s dad is Thurl and played in the NBA. Bailey was a great perimeter defender last season, and he is ready to ascend as an offensive player. He loves the corner three just like Anim. Bailey will become a more aggressive player on offense and be a legit talent for the Eagles.
4. Marquette’s big man renaissance – It appears that Marquette will be rolling out two big men regularly. This is not what they’ve done in the past, but with the abundance of size, Marquette will likely roll out big lineups. Golden Eagles will likely start with Theo John and Ed Morrow up front with a mix of transfer Jayce Johnson. This might make some cringe because it will be a slower team. Yet Marquette can play some real bully ball with other teams. There are not many teams in the Big East and in the NCAA that can compete with Marquette’s size.
5. Koby McEwen is a bucket – I’m committed to calling people ‘bucket’ more often this basketball season. We already know that Howard is a bucket, but McEwen is as well. He can attack that rack better than any other guard on the roster. He is going to provide scoring support and be a solid second option for Marquette. The usage rates from McEwen are a bit of concern, but with Howard, those should decrease this season.
Let’s go Golden Eagles.