The 2017-18 college basketball season is quickly approaching, and thus, we turn our attention to previewing the upcoming Marquette Golden Eagles men’s basketball season.
As you may have noticed, we’ve got a few new voices here on the site since the school year started. We’re going to take advantage of that and do something new for the season preview. We’ve got a stacked up list of questions about the 2017-18 campaign, and each of the new contributors to AE are going to take a crack at answering them. There will be a new question every weekday afternoon between now and the start of the season, so be sure to stop back every day to find the new one.
Onwards, then, to the question of the day:
Is this an NCAA tournament team?
Besay: The Big East is going to be very close this year as per usual but I think Marquette will be better this year and will make it back to the NCAA tournament. I expect their offense, especially from 3-point range, to be just as lethal this year. They have a lot of new guys like Theo John and Ike Eke that can be defensive specialists and will assuredly improve the MU defense this season. There's no way they'll be as bad defensively as they were last year right? Head coach Steve Wojciechowski has spent a lot of the pre-season working with the guys on pick-and-roll defense and addressing the problems from last year. They will be better on both sides of the ball, it will just be a matter of beating teams that they're not supposed to like Purdue and Xavier and avoiding bad losses. I see the Golden Eagles ending up anywhere between a 7-12 seed when March Madness rolls around.
CLagore: I...*sighs* No. I don't think so. Last season, they got in by the skin of their teeth, and that team also had an established big man and a win over the No. 1 overall tournament seed. This team, as of now, has none of those things. Of course, both of them could be attained (the latter is more on Villanova to perform well), but as of right now I would put this team in the first four out. That is painful to both read and write, but the Big East is tougher this season. Sure, Marquette has more chances for quality wins, but it's not every day you have a double-digit comeback against the No. 1 team in the country. Barring some huge steps taken by the newcomers and Howard and Hauser improving drastically on last season, it feels just out of reach. Prove me wrong, boys.
Broadway Brown: Many people are saying this is an NIT team, I think they are wrong. There are 10 teams in the Big East and I believe 8 of that are capable of making the NCAA tournament. Marquette will need to go pretty much undefeated in non-con play. There are acceptable losses during the non-con schedule, as long as the losses don’t stack up: at Wisconsin, Purdue, maybe Georgia or Wichita State if the Shockers turn up in Maui. If they win two or three of those four, that would be huge heading into the Big East portion of the schedule. I think Marquette has the talent to make it into the tournament they will just need to sneak an upset or two over some of the Big East's best. If the three ball is falling like it did last season, this team should invest in some dancing shoes.
NHammertime: Yes, and I’ll go so far as to predict them as a 5 seed. I have to stick to my guns based on my previous predictions. There are many great opportunities on the schedule to build a quality resume. Missing out on the tournament after getting back in last year would be a disappointment in my opinion.
Ben Snider: Yes. Thank God the question isn’t asking how far they’ll make into the tournament or I would’ve gone on a rant about the inherent randomness of single elimination tournaments and how sucky they are of determining which teams are actually good. But I don’t, so I’ll just say that they’ll be more consistent over the year with that extra experience.
Pistol Brad: Marquette is going to the NCAA tournament this year… I hope. Honestly, I really do see this team making the tournament, they will be one of the most explosive scoring teams in the BIG EAST just like last year but be able to have something more than a human turnstile playing center on defense (Sorry Luke). Even though we lost Jajuan Johnson, Katin Reinhardt, and the aforementioned turnstile, I don’t see anything they did that we won’t be able to replicate. Johnson was a pretty good player on paper but was a bad defender even without his ridiculous gambles that often ended in layups for the other team, Reinhardt was a solid player but if you divide this shot attempts from behind the arc among Sam Hauser, Markus Howard, and Andrew Rowsey, the offensive numbers would go up. I’m not saying this team is a lock for the NCAA tournament, but the way things look right now, they are better than the team last year and that team got in.
Will Marquette make the 2018 NCAA tournament?
This poll is closed