Marquette Golden Eagles
2012-2013 Overall Rank: #30
Conference Rank: #5 Big East
Marquette Team Page
Following a run to the Sweet Sixteen, Marquette will be looking for another strong performance in March of 2013. As usual with Marquette, frontcourt depth could be an issue. Somebody will need to replace Jae Crowder’s 8.4 rebounds per game. Davante Gardner, who started a dozen games as a sophomore last season, can do more than rebound. Gardner also proved to be a very good scorer in the paint. He can use his 290 pound frame to create space for himself. Chris Otule will be back in the mix as well after playing in just nine games during the 2011-2012 campaign due to a torn ACL. The 6-11 senior will not score a lot, but he will rebound and swat away some shots and that is exactly what the Golden Eagles need from their big men this year.
2011-12 Record: 27-8, 14-4
2011-12 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Buzz Williams
Coach Record: 96-44 at Marquette, 110-61 overall
Crowder was not only the best rebounder on the team, but he was also a dynamic scorer who averaged 17.5 points per game. And he is not even the biggest loss. Darius Johnson-Odom led the Golden Eagles with 18.3 points per contest and took all of the big shots. Those two accounted for a huge chunk of Marquette’s scoring. While, believe it or not, their numbers are replaceable, Coach Buzz Williams will need to find some new leaders. Jamail Jones is transferring to Florida Gulf Coast after seeing limited action last season.
Coach Williams seems to always bring in talent to replace his departing superstars. Incoming freshmen Jamal Ferguson, a lanky guard, and versatile power forward Steve Taylor will add plenty of talent to the roster. However, a couple transfers will make a bigger impact. Jake Thomas, a walk-on transfer from South Dakota, could find himself playing a role off of the bench. He is a big time shooter. The bigger new name is Trent Lockett. The graduate transfer from Arizona State averaged 13.0 points per game last season for the Sun Devils. Lockett is a good outside shooter, but has not taken too many outside shots throughout his career. That could change this year, but Lockett will still do most of his damage by attacking the basket. Lockett, at 6-5, has good size for a wing and he will help out on the glass, which will be very necessary on this team.
Who to Watch:
The Golden Eagles have a ton of talent on the wing, especially with Lockett joining the fray. Marquette has a history of playing wings at the four spot, so Jamil Wilson should find himself as a full time starter as the power forward. The 6-7 junior has plenty of size and is a very good shot blocker and has already proven to be a fine post defender. Wilson will need to help out on the glass a bit more with Crowder gone and he is athletic enough to do so. Vander Blue will likely return to his starting role at the shooting guard position. He is not much of a shooter, but Blue will do just about everything else that the team needs. Todd Mayo is building off of a solid freshman campaign in which he averaged 7.9 points per game. If Mayo can be a more consistent shooter, he will turn into a great player who will give Blue a run for his money for the starting job. Either way, Mayo will make a big impact off of the bench. Juan Anderson and Derrick Wilson will add even more depth on the perimeter.
Junior Cadougan will be the senior leader who makes this team tick on both ends of the floor. As a junior he dished out 5.4 assists per game and only tallied 2.6 turnovers. Putting up numbers like that may not be quite as easy without Johnson-Odom and Crowder, but Cadougan will find the new scorers on this team. And there are certainly plenty of options. Lockett is a great pickup and Blue and Mayo are full of potential. Add Gardner and Wilson in the frontcourt and Coach Williams has a slew of scoring threats. As long as the rebounding does not dip too much, the Golden Eagles will be heading back to the NCAA Tournament and eyeing a third straight trip to the Sweet Sixteen.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
Projected Starting Five:
Junior Cadougan, Senior, Guard, 6.3 points per game
Vander Blue, Junior, Guard, 8.4 points per game
Trent Lockett, Senior, Guard, DNP last season
Jamil Wilson, Junior, Forward, 7.1 points per game
Davante Gardner, Junior, Forward, 9.5 points per game
Madness 2012 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#79 Steve Taylor