MubbCap: Marquette’s Other Guys Step Up & Blowout Butler
Marquette Golden Eagles had their biggest home of the year when they faced the Butler Bulldogs. Not only did Butler come in ranked, but Marquette also owed them from a few weeks ago when they blew the game in the final three minutes. They got their revenge. Marquette dominated the second half en route to a 76-57 victory in arguably one of the best games that Marquette played all season. Golden Eagles have now won three straight games and six of their last seven Big East affairs. One would assume that they’ll find themselves ranked in the Top 25.
Player of the Game: Brendan Bailey – What a game from the sophomore. We’ve seen glimpses of Bailey coming into his own, and last night, he played special. Bailey did it on both ends of the court. He finished with 16 points, eight rebounds and four made threes. What I liked about Bailey’s game yesterday was the confidence. He felt like he belonged out there with everyone else. The dagger three by him in the second half might have been my favorite moment of the Marquette season.
Honorable Mention: Koby McEwen – This is the fifth straight game where McEwen scored 10 or more points. He continues to provide reliable offense for Marquette. McEwen knocked down two straight threes in the second half and immediately put Butler on the ropes. They could not recover. Koby finished with 16 points and four made three-pointers. Also, it’s worth pointing out he hit his first shot. As we’ve discussed, he is a much better player when that first basket goes in.
One Thing I Liked: They did not need Markus Howard to be special – This is a major development for Marquette. Markus Howard only had 17 points in this game. It is his lowest scoring total since only scoring six points against Maryland in the very early part of the season. This should give the team a great deal of confidence moving forward that they can win games without Howard going off for 20+ points. Bailey, McEwen, and others should feel great about this as Marquette gets into the final stretch of the conference.
One Question to Ponder: Could Marquette finish second in the Big East? – It is unlikely the Golden Eagles can catch Seton Hall at the top spot who has a three-game lead over everyone else in the conference. They’re in a three-way race for second with Villanova and Creighton. They play both teams in the next week. If Marquette can gain a split, they’re in a great position.
Next up: Marquette heads to Philadelphia to take on the Wildcats. This will not be an easy one for Marquette considering Nova lost four straight games. They’re desperate and my guess is they’ll be ready to beat up the Golden Eagles from the start. Don’t expect too much out of this one.