Late Monday night, Marquette men’s basketball announced the team will open the 2017-18 schedule with an exhibition game against Division II Lindenwood. On Tuesday morning, the schedule announcements continued, as Marquette will start the regular season on Friday, November 10, when they host Mount St. Mary’s.
Friday, November 10, 2017: vs Mount St. Mary’s
2016-17 Record: 20-16 (14-4 NEC)
Returning Points Leader: Junior Robinson, 14.1 ppg
Returning Rebounds Leader: Chris Wray, 5.7 rpg
Returning Assists Leader: Junior Robinson, 2.9 apg
2015-16 Final KenPom Ranking: #209
As you can see from the graphic Marquette put in their tweet, this game is officially part of the Maui Invitational. It’s just a bonus game tossed in, though, so regardless of who wins or loses, the Golden Eagles will be advancing to play in Hawaii during Thanksgiving Week.
At a glance, it seems like the Mountaineers are a solid non-conference foe, especially since it was a game that was randomly assigned to Marquette by the nice folks at the Maui Invitational. It might have even been a quality game when it was assigned to Marquette depending on when exactly that was. See, since the season ended, Mount St. Mary’s has lost three of their top six scorers from that team that won the NEC regular season and tournament titles, and none of the three were seniors. More importantly, head coach Jamion Christian has lost two of his three double-digit scorers. It gets worse! Those three scorers they lost? Three of the top four rebounders! Not great, Bob!
This team might be incredibly awful as the Mountaineers reset from those losses. It’s also possible that by the time that NEC play rolls around, the coaching staff will have things hammered into line. Mount St. Mary’s has never finished under .500 in league play under Jamion Christian, so hopefully they can swing that again this coming season to help prop up Marquette’s RPI when March rolls around.
Marquette is 1-0 all time against Mount St. Mary’s. The lone other meeting was also a season opener at the Bradley Center, with the Golden Eagles recording the 91-37 victory on November 11, 2011.