#51 Marquette Men's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

Marquette Golden Eagles
2020-2021 Overall Rank: #51
Conference Rank: #6 Big East
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Marquette has been quite consistent under Coach Steve Wojciechowski. In the last five years the Golden Eagles have won at least 18 games and every season during that span they have lost between ten and 14 contests. Consistency is nice, but that has left Marquette squarely on the bubble in most of those seasons. This time around Coach Wojciechowski and company should be happy to end up on the bubble again in 2021. Three starters are gone, including Markus Howard and his 27.8 points per game. The Golden Eagles will have to rely on some former role-players and newcomers to pick up the slack, but they have the talent to yet again knock on the door of the NCAA Tournament.
2019-20 Record: 18-12, 8-10
Coach: Steve Wojciechowski
Coach Record: 115-81 at Marquette, 115-81 overall
Key Departed Players:
Markus Howard, Guard, 27.8 ppg
Sacar Anim, Guard/forward, 13.1 ppg
Brendan Bailey, Forward, 7.1 ppg
Jayce Johnson, Center, 3.8 ppg
Ed Morrow, Forward, 3.4 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Koby McEwen, Senior, Guard, 9.5 ppg
Theo John, Senior, Forward, 5.1 ppg
Jamal Cain, Senior, Forward, 5.2 ppg
Greg Elliott, Junior, Guard, 2.5 ppg
Symir Torrence, Sophomore, Guard, 1.8 ppg
Key New Players:
Dexter Akanno, RS Freshman, Guard
D.J. Carton, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Ohio State
Luke Fizulich, Freshman, Guard
Dawson Garcia, Freshman, Forward
Oso Ighodaro, Freshman, Forward
Justin Lewis, Freshman, Forward
Jose Perez, Junior, Guard, Transfer from Gardner-Webb, not eligible
Koby McEwen is suddenly the senior leader on this team one year from transferring in from Utah State. Last season he averaged 9.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.2 assists and proved to be a solid overall wing. However, his three-point shooting percentage was below 30 and that will have to improve. Theo John is the bruiser in the paint. The senior will not score much, but he will play great defense. Jamal Cain is the more versatile frontcourt player. He can shoot the ball effectively from long range and the 6-7 senior could see a significant boost to his stats in 2020-2021. D.J. Carton, a transfer from Ohio State, will have to play a large role right away. In his lone year with the Buckeyes, Carton averaged 10.4 points per game and was very consistent shooting the ball. McEwen, John, Cain and Carton are the proven players Marquette will build around. However, beyond that there are quite a few questions. Junior Greg Elliott can add some defense to the perimeter, while sophomore Symir Torrence showed a bit of potential in limited action last season. Five freshmen will need to make an impact. The forward trio of Dawson Garcia, Oso Ighodaro and Justin Lewis highlight the class and Marquette will need them to start living up to their potential from day one. Even with quality production from a couple of the probable role-players, the Golden Eagles will not likely have the depth they need to survive the grind of the Big East and end up on the right side of the bubble.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 77.8 (28th in nation, 2nd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 71.6 (240, 9)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.0 (216, 8)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.2 (78, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 10.0 (9, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 38.2 (12, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 74.3 (73, 3)
Rebound Margin: 4.9 (42, 1)
Assists Per Game: 13.5 (136, 9)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.8 (235, 8)
Madness 2020 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#44 Dawson Garcia
#92 Justin Lewis
#122 Osasere Ighodaro