It was a huge win for the Butler Bulldogs midweek as they beat Seton Hall 85-78 at Hinkle Fieldhouse. The Bulldogs almost gave the game away as Seton Hall battled back but Butler was able to hold on. The win was much needed as Butler sits on the bubble in terms of the NCAA Tournament. Usually a staple in the tournament, some bad losses may be the reason why Butler may miss out this year's Big Dance. But a win over Seton Hall should really help them. Butler now has a record of 20-9 and a conference record of 9-8. The Bulldogs now sit in a logjam for 4th place along with Providence and Creighton. A win or a loss could be the difference between a 4th and a 6th seed in the BIG EAST Tournament. Now they have to end the season on a high note as they face Marquette on Senior Day.
A win in this game and a couple of wins in the BIG EAST Tournament should get Butler into the NCAA Tournament. But they are prone to laying an egg as we saw the last time they played Marquette.
Meanwhile, it was a huge win for the Marquette Golden Eagles as they beat Georgetown 88-87 on Senior Night. Despite having their best player Henry Ellenson roll his ankle, Marquette were able to hold on against the Hoyas and get their 19th win of the season. The Golden Eagles are now 19-11 on the season with a 8-9 conference record, good for 7th in the conference. They could improve their seeding in the BIG EAST Tournament, but it looks highly unlikely right now. A win against Butler would certainly help their seeding as they would have the same conference record as the Bulldogs. If Creighton and Providence lose as well, it would create a four way tie for 4th in the BIG EAST tournament. Awesome, ain't it?
This will be the final regular season game for both teams.
How to watch, listen, or stream
Game time: 2:30 p.m ET
TV: Fox Sports Network (Check local listings)
Radio: WFNI ESPN 1070 AM or 93.5 FM The Fan (Butler) || ESPN 540 AM Milwaukee (ESPN)
Stream: FOX Sports Go (Where available)
Odds: Due to the unknown status of Henry Ellenson, a line was never released for this game.
Record ATS: Butler (15-13-1) || Marquette (12-17)
O/U: Due to the unknown status of Henry Ellenson, an over/under was never released for this game.
3 things to watch
1. Another huge game from Kellen Dunham?
Kellen Dunham was the hero for Butler against Seton Hall as he scored 22 points to lead the Bulldogs to victory. He was effiecent all over the court, hitting three's (4-9 from three) and hitting mid range as well (7-14 on all field goal attempts). In a season where Kelan Martin has stole the show, Dunham has had a solid season for the Bulldogs. He leads the team in scoring with 16.4 points per game and has been their three-point specialist. Look for him to go all out in his final game at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
2. Should Henry Ellenson even be playing?
After rolling his ankle against Georgetown, Henry Ellenson was day-to-day heading into this game. Frankly, he should not even be playing in this game. Ellenson, who will likely declare to the NBA and be drafted, should not be risked as Marquette should focused on next week. Although their chances of winning the BIG EAST Tournament are slim, it is more important to have a fully rested Ellenson in those games, than throw him out there on one foot.
3. Ball movement for Marquette
Marquette is 27th in the country with an average of 16.5 assists per game, as they are exceptional at moving the ball. If Ellenson doesn't play in this game, they will likely have to rely on that if they want a shot at beating Butler. It will be a tough game regardless but getting easy baskets is one way to upset the Bulldogs.