Well, they got the first game out of the way.
Marquette's eight freshmen have officially played one career collegiate game, a 75-55 loss to UW-Green Bay. The good news, if you want to call it that, is that they were only trailing by six at the half. I know it's barely small solace when they got outscored by 14 in the second half, but you have to take positives from somewhere. Green Bay has won 17 straight regular season Horizon League titles, so to at least make them work for it for three-quarters of the game is something to hang your hat on.
Of course, that's not the goal, is it? The goal is to win the games, not just be slightly and/or vaguely competitive for part of the game. Marquette will get a nice boost on Monday afternoon when they host Milwaukee Public School kids as part of the yearly MPS Day at the Al McGuire Center, and on top of that, it's not like they've scheduled Connecticut to come in, either....
Game #2: vs IUPUI (0-1)
The Jaguars come into Milwaukee having dropped their opener on the road to Eastern Illinois. The same EIU team that went 10-20 a year ago. The same EIU team that's picked to finish ninth in the 12 team Ohio Valley Conference. I guess the good news is that it went to overtime.... except IUPUI was up seven after the first quarter and nine at the half. Whoops.
After that result, I begin questioning the strength of the Summit Leauge, where IUPUI was picked to finish third this season. In a interesting turn of events, Oral Roberts actually got a first place vote, but still finished below IUPUI in the voting. The Jags were 15-16 last year, but they return 10 players from that squad, so I guess that explains the positive thoughts around the league.
Akilah Sims finished with 22 points and eight rebounds to lead IUPUI in both categories against Eastern Illinois, and she was also the Jaguars' lone representative on the Summit League's preseason all-conference team. The 5'10" forward from Fort Wayne, Indiana, averaged 11 points and five rebounds last season, both of which had her as second best on the team.