Hey! Didja see that the Associated Press released their preseason top 25 for women’s basketball a couple of days ago? It’s true! That’s always a fun signpost on the way to the start of the season.
Marquette is coming off a season where they missed the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2016. They did make it to the third round of the WNIT though, but that wasn’t enough to get the AP voters interested in voting for the Golden Eagles to start the year. Not really a surprise.
It certainly looks like Megan Duffy and her squad are going to get more than a couple of chances to play their way into the top 25. It won’t be right away, but starting with the fourth game of the season, the Golden Eagles will be in the Bahamas to play in the Battle 4 Atlantis. Pretty much every way that Marquette turns in that event, they’ll be seeing either a ranked team or a team that at least earned votes in the preseason poll.
Their first game will be against Texas, and the Longhorns are starting off the year at #3 in the country. Yep. After that, MU’s second round game will be against either Louisville or Gonzaga. That’s the preseason #7 Cardinals or the unofficial #38 ranked Bulldogs as Gonzaga picked up three points in the polling. Finally, in Game #3, there’s a possibility of Marquette playing either #5 Tennessee, #23 South Dakota State, or UCLA, which came in just two spots outside the top 25 in the voting. There’s also Rutgers as the fourth option, and the Scarlet Knights are just like MU in terms of not earning any preseason votes.
That’s it for the non-conference schedule as Megan Duffy loaded up the slate with teams that were expected to not be ranked and you can’t really fault her for it based on the potential options here for MU. However, Big East play brings its own set of challenges. UConn will start the year off at #6 in the country, while Creighton, fresh off the first Sweet 16 and first Elite Eight in program history, are the preseason #21 team in the country.
In case that wasn’t enough, there are two conference foes earning votes in the preseason poll. They’re back-to-back just barely outside the top 25. Villanova is the unofficial #28 team in the country after earning 25 points, while DePaul and sophomore star Aneesah Morrow picked up 19 points worth of votes to land one spot behind the Wildcats.
Marquette starts the season on Monday, November 7th, with a noon start time at home against Fairleigh Dickinson. FloHoops will have the broadcast for that one in case you can’t figure out how to take a long lunch from work to make it down to the McGuire Center.
You can check out the entire top 25 right here.