We knew, coming into the season, that this was going to be a difficult year for Marquette: the loss of like 85% of MU's scoring and rebounding and minutes played and so on and et cetera meant that we'd be breaking in a lot of new faces (and that not a lot could be expected from the faces that were coming back), and the loss of 75% of the recruiting class after Coach Brent left for VPI meant that the bench would be both exceedingly short and exceptionally small.
Coupled with the fact that Coach Wojo hasn't been THE man holding the clipboard before in his coaching career and was undoubtedly going to face a learning curve, as far as the Xs and Os of coaching go, nobody was expecting big things this year; shoot for .500, throw a scare in some tournament teams, maybe, and lay the groundwork for next season when the heavy artillery arrives.
And, yes, we knew there were going to be games when the lack of talent and lack of experience led to decent teams like Ohio State shooting ridiculous percentages and running Marquette out of the gym. That was a given.
What wasn't a given was getting strafed at home by the second-best college team (in a two-horse race) in Omaha freaking Nebraska.
But that's exactly what happened today, as Wojo's Warriors got absolutely blitzed for the second straight game, this time allowing UNO to shoot 57.1% overall, with an inexcusable eFG% of 63.4%, as the Mavericks ran MU out of its own gym, 97-89. From the get-go, this was virtually a repeat of the second half of the Ohio State game, as Omaha waltzed to the basket time after time without even token resistance from Marquette's defense. And, yes, it certainly hurts that Marquette doesn't have anyone serving as a deterrent in the paint, but spoiler alert: Luke Fischer isn't going to fix the problems with the transition defense, which remains a disaster, or the fact that none of our guards -- most especially Matt Carlino -- can stay with his man on the perimeter.
The offense was fine, I guess, although there were once again way too many 3-pointers attempted (27, with just six makes) and Omaha was content to take the ball out of the basket and sprint to the other end, knowing that they'd be playing with at least a man advantage when the ball crossed half court. Marquette's guards couldn't figure out Omaha's CJ Carter, who went off for 25 points despite coughing up 7 turnovers, or Devin Patterson, who finished with 26 points, 8 assists, and 6 rebounds.
We'll do our best not to overreact to this (maybe? don't hold us to that), but however you look at it, this is a really, really bad loss, even though Marquette, to this point, has been a pretty bad team.
Until tomorrow, then, this is your post-game dejection thread.