Syracuse will try to rebound from a brutal loss to Georgetown when it heads to Wisconsin to take on Marquette:
BUZZ-KILL: After a sloppy loss against Villanova on Saturday, Marquette coach Buzz Williams let his team have it. The Golden Eagles had just committed 19 turnovers in a 60-55 loss and Williams was frank in his post game press conference. “We were 10-3 not because of what we were doing offensively and defensively, or that we have more talent or are better coached,” Williams said. “We win because we play hard. Tonight we didn’t play hard.” There were a lot of problems from the team’s top gunners, Vander Blue and Davante Gardner. Blue was just 2-8 for 7 points, while Gardner struggled mightily in his 11 minutes. Even trusted playmaker Junior Cadougan was uncharacteristically sloppy with the ball, coughing it up five times. “When you give the other team the ball 19 times and the winner is the first to 60, that’s not hard enough,” Williams said.
SCOUTING THE GOLDEN EAGLES: Blue has taken a big leap from his sophomore to junior year, and leads the team in scoring at 14.7 points per game. Williams shot down the idea of Blue being a candidate for Big East player of the year, with more established players like Otto Porter being front runners for the award, but has certainly earned the respect of Williams. “As guys mature as people, it typically mirrors their maturation as a player. That’s been Vander’s case. He was really diligent this summer with his work, learning to finish with both hands. He’s been really good throughout the season. He’s doing a lot better job on the glass than he has in the past,” Williams told Michael Hunt of the Journal Sentinel. Gardner is the team’s second leading scorer at 11.6 points per game, but has been wildly inconsistent this season.
HISTORICALLY SPEAKING: Syracuse leads the series between the schools 8-4 in a rivalry that dates back to the 1942 season. The last time the two teams met, the Orange won 73-66 on Jan. 7, 2012. Kris Joseph had 17 points and 4 rebounds to lead the way.
GAME INFORMATION: Monday, Feb. 24, 2013 at 7 p.m. in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. TV: ESPN.Wesley Cheng