Tuesday, December 6, 2011, started off as a pretty good day by Marquette basketball standards. The Golden Eagles had just come off of a win in Madison against Bucky and had elevated to #11 in both polls heading into a game in Madison Square Garden against Washington. Things are rolling along, right?
In the span of roughly 72 hours, Marquette went from a team that is probably very close to what Buzz Williams wants to see out of the teams he's coaching to a badly decimated squad who will only dress 8 players against UW-Green Bay on Saturday night. First, dominant defensive presence Chris Otule is lost 2 minutes into the Washington game to an ACL injury that still hasn't had it's severity officially decided. Then mid day Friday brought the news that freshman forward Juan Anderson, who had already missed practice time because of a foot injury and game time due to an NCAA suspension would miss 3-4 weeks with an unspecified shoulder injury. Then to cap the day off, sophomore forward Jamil Wilson sprained his ankle in practice on Friday evening, thus knocking him out from participating in Saturday night's game against the Phoenix.
It's enough to make a guy start shouting.
Let's hit the jump, and see if we can find some upside here, alright?
Possible upsides here:
- Even with the announcements of the injuries to Anderson and Wilson, there was no clarification or update to the status of Chris Otule, which, since he hasn't been ruled out for the season yet, I will take as good news.
- Anderson was clearly the 11th guy on the bench at this point, so his loss is nothing but bonus depth for the time being.
- Wilson's ankle doesn't sound very serious, and given that Marquette will take a week off from playing any games after UW-GB and that it's finals week, so the practice schedule was going to be screwy anyway, he should have more than enough time to recover to play against Northern Colorado.
- Darius Johnson-Odom and Jae Crowder were named to the preseason all-Big East team for a reason, and in Jae's case, reasons that we didn't quite realize fully.
- Davante Gardner, Derrick Wilson, Todd Mayo, and Jamail Jones are going to get a boatload more minutes going forward, especially against UW-GB. Let's hope they make the most of them.
So, let's take a deep breath, get through a victory over the Fightin' Wardles of UW-GB, and then regroup and see where the team is after that.