Marquette Golden Eagles (10-3, 1-0 Big East) vs Seton Hall Pirates (10-3, 0-1 Big East)
Marquette Stat Leaders
Points: Jajuan Johnson, 13.8 ppg
Rebounds: Luke Fischer, 6.2 rpg
Assists: Haanif Cheatham, 3.2 apg
Marquette Injury Update: Junior guard Duane Wilson started out Wednesday’s game against Georgetown on the stationary bicycle on the sidelines, and aggravated the groin injury that he was keeping warm on the bike twice during the game. He played just seven minutes in the first half of that game and did not return to the court in the second half. As of right now, his status for this game is still up in the air, but given his inability to stay on the court on Wednesday, I don’t expect Wilson to play in this game.
Shooting Note: Marquette is the 16th best three-point shooting team in the country, connecting on 40.5% of their attempts. Everyone on the team who has attempted more than 30 three point shots this season is shooting over 36%..... except Katin Reinhardt, who is shooting 29% on 49 attempts and is shooting just 25% on his last 28 attempts.
Efficiency Note: Every scholarship player currently on Marquette’s roster has an offensive rating over 110 according to KenPom.com.... except Katin Reinhardt, who has a career low ORtg of 91.6.
Seton Hall Stat Leaders
Points: Khadeen Carrington, 19.8 ppg
Rebounds: Angel Delgado, 11.6 rpg
Assists: Madison Jones, 3.3 apg
Current KenPom Rankings
Seton Hall: #55
KenPom Projection: Seton Hall has a 54% chance of victory, with a predicted score of 81-79.
Tempo Free Fun: To some degree, this will be a game that is a clash of strengths on one end of the court and a clash of weaknesses on the other. Marquette’s offense and Seton Hall’s defense are the strongest components of each team, while SHU’s offense and MU’s defense are drifting around in the bottom of the top 100 in the country.
The game may be decided on Marquette’s defense. Seton Hall is #199 in the country when it comes to turnover rate, while Marquette is top 80 in terms of forcing opponents to turn the ball over. Madison Jones and Ismael Sanogo start and play more than 24 minutes a night each for the Pirates.... but Jones turns it over on 24% of possessions, and Sanogo is up over 27%. If the steal machines that we call Jajuan Johnson (#16 in the country in steal rate), Markus Howard (#309), and, if he’s available, Duane Wilson (#69) can force Jones and Sanogo into mistakes repeatedly, that might be able to shift things in Marquette’s favor.
Marquette struggled to contain Rodney Pryor’s three point shooting on Wednesday night, and that issue may come up again against Seton Hall. While the Pirates are one of the 20 worst teams in the country in terms of incorporating the long ball into their offense, Khadeen Carrington could singlehandedly tilt this game for SHU if he gets going behind the arc. He averages nearly five long range attempts per game, which is a little less than Pryor, and he’s shooting 51%, just like Pryor. Marquette will only really need to keep track of Carrington and freshman Myles Powell (36%, more than 5 attempts per game) behind the arc, so hopefully that increases MU’s ability to defend the three.
Rebounding may be a major component of this game. It’s no secret that Marquette is not a good offensive rebounding team this season. However, because the Golden Eagles are a good defensive rebounding team (#62 in the country in DR rate), it seems like that’s by design. If that’s the case, it’s not the worst thing if a good SHU defensive rebounding team (#50 in the country) dominates the glass on that end. MU will need to make their defensive rebounds count because the Pirates are just as good on the the offensive glass (#54) as they are on the defensive side. Angel Delgado, the Big East’s leading rebounder, is a walking, talking bottle of Windex, ranking in the top 30 in the country in individual rebounding rate on both sides of the court, and he went for 11 and 13 rebounds against the two games against Marquette last season. Ismael Sanogo can get it done on both ends of the court as well, and Michael Nzei is a sneaky good offensive rebounder coming off the bench.
Marquette Last 10 Games: 8-2, with wins in their last 3 games.
Seton Hall Last 10 Games: 7-3, with a loss to Creighton last time out snapping a six game winning streak.
All Time Series: Marquette has a 15-5 advantage.
Current Streak: Seton Hall won both games last year to give themselves a two game winning streak.
Follow Along On Twitter
@MarquetteMBB - Official Marquette account
@SetonHallMBB - Official Seton Hall account
@AnonymousEagle - Hey, that's us!
@becb_sbn - SB Nation's Big East site
@DalyDoseOfHoops - Everyone's favorite independent NYC area hoops blog
@Matt_Velazquez - The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel MU beat reporter