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Marquette Basketball Preview Primer: vs Creighton Bluejays

It’s time to wrap up the regular season and put an emphatic stamp on the ol’ postseason profile.

NCAA Basketball: Akron at Creighton Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Marquette Golden Eagles (18-11, 9-8 Big East) vs Creighton Bluejays (23-7, 10-7 Big East)

When: Saturday, March 4, 2017, at 1:30pm Central
Location: BMO Harris Bradley Center
Television: FS2
Streaming: Fox Sports Go
Radio: 540 ESPN Milwaukee
Live Stats: GameTracker

Marquette Stats Leaders

Points: Markus Howard, 13.0 ppg
Rebounds: Luke Fischer 6.0 rpg
Assists: Jajuan Johnson, 2.6 apg

Creighton Stats Leaders

Points: Marcus Foster, 18.8 ppg
Rebounds: Justin Patton, 6.3 rpg
Assists: Khyri Thomas, 3.3 apg

Current KenPom Rankings

Marquette: #30
Creighton: #26
KenPom Projection: Marquette has a 58% chance of victory, with a predicted score of 84-82.

Since We Last Met: The first meeting between the first two teams was Creighton’s first since finding out that Maurice Watson was done for the year due to a torn ACL. Counting the MU game, they’re 5-6 since then, and, uh, it’s largely been a very unimpressive set of victories. DePaul twice, home against Georgetown and St. John’s. Wooooo, good for you. They did manage to beat Butler in Hinkle Fieldhouse, wonder of wonders, and that win is probably single-handedly keeping their NCAA tournament hopes alive right now.

Here’s What’s At Stake: Spots #1 and #2 in the Big East tournament are set in stone right now, as are #7 through #10. The remaining four seeds are still up for grabs with just one game left for everyone, and it’s 100% possible that Marquette could end up with any one of them.

We’re going to lean heavily on the handiwork of Matt Velazquez of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel here. He sat down with his abacus and his slide ruler to figure out all of Marquette’s scenarios for the Big East tournament.

How Marquette finishes 3rd

Marquette win over Creighton, Providence loses at St. John's, Seton Hall loses at Butler — No. 3 Marquette would play No. 6 Seton Hall

or

Marquette win over Creighton, Providence loses at St. John's, Seton Hall win at Butler — No. 3 Marquette would play No. 6 Providence

How Marquette finishes 4th

Marquette win over Creighton, Providence win at St. John's, Seton Hall win at Butler — No. 4 Marquette would play No. 5 Seton Hall

or

Marquette win over Creighton, Providence win at St. John's, Seton Hall loss at Butler — No. 4 Marquette would play No. 5 Creighton

How Marquette finishes 5th

Marquette loss to Creighton, Providence win at St. John's, Seton Hall loss at Butler — No. 5 Marquette would play No. 4 Providence

How Marquette finishes 6th

Marquette loses to Creighton plus any other combination of results — No. 6 Marquette would play No. 3 Creighton

Regardless of what does happen, there’s a 33% chance Marquette plays Seton Hall, a 33% chance Marquette plays Providence, and a 33% chance Marquette gets a second straight game against Creighton.

Marquette Last 10 Games: 5-5, with wins in three of their last four.

Creighton Last 10 Games: 5-5, with losses in two of their last three.

All Time Series: Marquette holds a 51-32 advantage.

Current Streak: Marquette is now on a two game winning streak against Creighton after the win in Omaha earlier this season. The Jays have won four out of the last seven, though.

Jajuan Johnson Watch: With four steals against Xavier, the senior from Memphis now has 55 swipes on the season, the seventh most by a Marquette senior. He passed both Jimmy Butler and Tony Smith, both of whom had 53. Johnson’s 329 points this season have him sitting on 971 career points, so you’d like to think he’ll become Marquette’s 47th 1,000 point scorer before the end of the season.

Luke Fischer Watch: Fischer is currently tied with Chris Otule for the 4th most swats in program history with 146. I don’t think he’ll catch Faisal Abraham in third place with 172, though. Fischer’s 46 swats on the season has him ranked #4 all time in blocks for seniors, however there’s a big gap until third place and Amal McCaskill with 55. Fischer’s climb to 1,000 points in his Marquette career continues as his 322 points this season have gotten him up to 986. At this pace, he should get to 1,000 before Jajuan Johnson gets there and become Marquette’s 46th 1,000 point scorer. Fischer should probably stop fouling out in 13 minutes if he wants to get there, though.

Markus Howard Watch: The freshman from Arizona extended his freshman record for made three-pointers to 74 on Wednesday. That’s the ninth most in a season by any Marquette player, passing Darius Johnson-Odom and Anthony Pieper with 73. Next up is Robb Logterman with 75, which will probably happen before the under-16 media timeout, and DJO’s 77 in 2011-12 is also at risk. Howard now has 133 three-point attempts on the season, which is the fifth most by a freshman, and Dominic James’ 136 tries is up next. With 121 field goals on the year, Howard has tied Duane Wilson for the 10th most made field goals by a freshman, and Russ Wittberger in 9th at 122 is up next. Howard is up to 363 points on the season, which gives him the eighth most by a Marquette freshman. Up next: Bo Ellis with 378 points.

Sam Hauser Watch: Hey, remember when Hauser was neck and neck with Howard on the freshman three-pointer chart? Good times. With 56 made threes, Hauser is now third all time for freshmen behind Travis Diener’s former record (57), and, of course, wherever Howard’s record happens to be at a given moment. Hauser has the 7th most long range attempts by a freshman with 127, which has him two short of Travis Diener in sixth. The Stevens Point native has 17 blocks on the season, which is the 7th most by a MU freshman, and Charles Luter is sitting in sixth place with 19. Hauser has moved into the top six for rebounds by a freshman with 147 this season. It’s going to take him a game or three to catch up to Odartey Blankson in fifth place with 160.

Andrew Rowsey Watch: The transfer from UNC Asheville now has 60 made threes on the season, which has him all alone with the 6th most by a Marquette junior. Next up is Mark Anglavar and Aaron Hutchins with 65. His 140 attempts this season are the 10th most by any Marquette junior, with John Cliff sitting in ninth place at 143.

Follow Along On Twitter

@MarquetteMBB - Official Marquette account
@BluejayMBB - Official Creighton account
@AnonymousEagle - Hey! That's us!
@becb_sbn - SB Nation's Big East site
@whitebluereview - Our favorite independent Creighton blog
@Matt_Velazquez - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel beat reporter