It's been a long, fun week here at Anonymous Eagle. We've made fun of our least favorite college basketball program in every way we could conjure up in our twisted little brains. We've taken a look at history. We've looked at fashion. We've examined pop culture. We did a little investigatory reporting. We may have even dabbled in the absurd. We have utilized every medium at our disposal: the written word, audio, video and for those trying to make it through life with a state school education, we even broke it down in pictures. All of this in an effort to expand your knowledge about our distaste for the Red Menace and to get you ready for this weekend's game. This game that means more to some Marquette fans than any other game in the year (I have one friend that can't even discuss the game. All he can say is "I hate them so much"). Badger fans would have you believe this game ranks in importance just behind a mid-season hockey game against St. Cloud St, but anyone that's ever read the comments section on JSOnline knows better than that.
After a week of bluster and trash talk, here we are on the eve of the game. In less than 24 hours the boys are going to hit the hardwood and do what they do best. So for all of us here at Anonymous Eagle, is one last chance to do what we do best... run our mouths. It's put up or shut up time kids. Marquette against Wisconsin for one year's worth of inalienable rights to talk shit. So.... who ya got?
The mathematical wizards at kenpom.com only give Marquette a 17% chance of winning this game. And if you listen to Rubie Q long enough, you might think that the MU shouldn't even bother boarding the bus tomorrow. But in my role as the voice of optimism around this place, I feel it is my duty to rise above the nattering nabobs of negativity. So I am taking Marquette to win this game 65-60.
I think that the Golden Eagles can come close enough to replicating North Carolina's blueprint for beating Bucky to win this game. Carolina showed that if you can make life difficult on Jordan Taylor, the Badgers will struggle to score. They let a bigger 2 guard play Taylor the entire 2nd half and it gave him fits. I think Vander Blue can fill that same role for Marquette. If Taylor isn't able to penetrate and create open looks for their seemingly endless supply of shooters, that dramatically increases the chances of victory. I also think MU has some players that can give the Badger shooter trouble on the perimeter. To me, Jamil Wilson is perfect to guard guys like Jared Berggren or Mike Bruesewitz. He's long enough that they can't just shoot over the top of him, and athletic enough to prevent them from going by on the dribble. From what I've seen, the Badger big shooters (I'm not going to call them "big men" because that is something entirely different) are far less comfortable when they're made to put the ball on the floor, rather than just catching and shooting. I also love the level Jae Crowder is playing at right now. I don't know that the Badgers have a guy that can match-up with him. I really believe that Marquette creates as many, if not more, match-up issues for Wisconsin than vice versa.
So there you have it kids. This intrepid reporter has his Blue and Gold glasses on and he's picking the Golden Eagles. There's plenty of room out here on this limb. Who's brave enough to join me?