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Marquette 86, St. John's (MN) 56: First Impressions

Al McGuire Court at the Bradley Center was the site for today's exhibition game between the Marquette Golden Eagles and the St. John's "Not that St. John's" Johnnies.  As Rubie said in his game thread, the two goals for today's game were to get some run against another team and not get injured...mission accomplished!

Marquette won 86-56 in a somewhat sloppy game that saw Marquette shooting 46% from the field, 33% from downtown, and 56% from the line.  I wouldn't be overly concerned with those numbers seeing as those today was the first time that the team has set foot in the Bradley Center this school year.  Despite a slow start and a stretch early in the second half when the lead shrunk to 10, Marquette was in control for most of the game.  Marquette outrebounded the undersized Johnnies 48-27 and had 26 assists and 13 steals.  Rather than bore you with a more in-depth analysis of the blowout, I figured I'd provide my quick first impressions of each of your 2010-2011 Golden Eagles.


Jimmy Butler-As the kids say now-a-days, Jimmy do what Jimmy do.  Attacking the hoop and getting to the line is what he does best.  Although he struggled from the field and the line today I'm not worried at all.  Luckily, we seem to have more depth this year so we can overcome a bad night or foul trouble from one of our star players.

Joe Fulce-Same ol' Joe Fulce so far.  I hope he steps out of the role player mold he's been in the past few years.

Chris O'TooleOtule-Granted he was playing against guys 5-6 inches shorter than him for most of the game, but he looked very confident to me and had 12 points and 9 boards.  If he can stay healthy, stay on the floor by avoiding fouls, and provide anything close to 12 points and 9 boards on a regular basis we might be in store for a great year.

Darius Johnson-Odom-Didn't have the greatest shooting day, but was very aggressive in attacking the rim which combined with his normal shooting night could be a lethal combination.

Dwight Buycks-Suprise start at PG today, but if Buzz has faith in him then I guess we'll see how the Buycks at PG experiment plays out.  If anything it might open up some more minutes at SG for Vander Blue.  He seemed pretty comfortable running the offense and ended the game with 6 assists and only 1 turnover.

Vander Blue-Number 2 is Vander Blue.  Was a little tentative on the offensive side, but showed some of his lock down defense which will come in very handy this year.

Jae Crowder-I've been very impressed with Jae the two times I've seen him this year.  He seems to be very comfortable on the court and has a very high basketball IQ.  Probably was today's MVP with 15 points, 10 boards, 4 assists, a block and 3 steals in 26 minutes.  I'd be surprised if he's not in the starting line-up by the start of the Big East season.

Reggie Smith-Was very impressive as well today and hardly looked like a freshman scoring 8 points and dishing out 7 assists in just 14 minutes.  He'll provide excellent depth at PG and might push hard for major minutes this year.

Junior Cadougan-Didn't make his first appearance until 6 minutes left to go in the half which was surprising considering many thought he was odds on favorite to be the starting PG for the season.  He seemed to hold his own when he was on the court, but his PT might be hurt by the Buycks as starting PG experiment.

Erik Williams-Same old stuff from EWill as he always seems to show flashes of what he can be but can't seem to stay on the court very long.  Hopefully he can contribute some of the bench this year.

Jamail Jones-For a second when I saw him on the court I had flashbacks to Jerel McNeal and not just because he wears #22.  Although he didn't see much playing time today he displayed his silky smooth jumper on more than once occasion.

Davante Gardner-Played only 7 minutes but seemed to have no problem throwing his body around down low which might come in handy down the line.  He had a nice steal and started the point forward fast break before turning it over and getting the hook.

Rob Frozena-Played 3 minutes in the early stages of the second half when Buzz made a line change after the lead had been cut to 10.  I'm not sure who the fans are going root for next year because it sounds like Dave Singleton isn't your average walk-on.