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Creighton Non-Conference Schedule Analysis

Break out your wall calendar and a sharpie ‘cause it’s time to look at a schedule!

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Welcome to this sports article! Today we’ll be looking at Creighton University’s men’s basketball non-conference schedule - a schedule that was released on July 7th, but I’m just now writing about it!

Included below will be opposing teams that the Bluejays will be battling it out with in the early portion of their 2016-17 season and a few facts about each matchup, presented to you with sweet, sweet bullet points. Mmmm bullet points. Good luck taking those away, Obama.

There are good games! There are great games! There are ok games. Let’s dive right in, shall we?

*All game times are designated for the Central Timezone

November 4th, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 7:00pm

1620 on your AM dial

WAYNE STATE WILDCATS

Division II

2015-16 Record

5-22 overall – 3-19 conference

Notable Notes:

· Exist in Wayne, NE

· Creighton Head Coach Greg McDermott coached six seasons at Wayne State from 1994-2000 and posted a 116-53 record

· Junior guard and 2015-16 scoring leader Matt Thomas hails from Elkhorn, NE

· Tallest player is Dovydas Burneika – a 6’9 PF/C from Lithuania

· This will be the first meeting betwixt these academic institutions

· Exhibition games don’t count towards either team’s overall record – don’t sweat this one! It’s a glorified practice!

Coffee Mug Score: 12


November 11th, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 8:00pm

FS2 / 1620 on your AM dial

UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI – KANSAS CITY KANGAROOS

Western Athletic Conference

2015-16 Record

12-19 overall – 4-10 in conference – #288 RPI

Notable Notes:

· Creighton has an 8-3 record against UMKC, their last matchup was in 2013 where the Bluejays won 96-70 - a game that featured Doug McDermott scoring 37 points.

· UMKC’s Campus is 3.8 miles away from LC’s BBQ

· 5’11 PG Martez Harrison led the ‘Roos in scoring and assists with 15.4 PPG/ 4.2 APG

· UMKC finished first in the WAC in 3pt% (.362) but fourth in 3pt FGA (213-588)

· Head Coach Kareem Richardson was an assistant with Louisville in their final year in the BIG EAST, ultimately leading the Cards to a national title before jumping ship (rightfully so) and landing at UMKC. Previous to that he coached at new friend Xavier in 2011 and led them to a Sweet 16 & top 20 recruiting class. He’s also a graduate of old friend Evansville – played as point guard in ’96 & ’97 - as well as serving as an assistant coach at Drake.

· The only Kangaroos that thrive in Kansas City are in the Kansas City Zoo.

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕


November 15th, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 7:30pm

FS1 / 1620 on your AM dial

UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN BADGERS

B1G

2015-16 Record

22-13 overall – 12-6 in conference – #36 RPI

Notable Notes:

· Creighton currently sits at .500 against the Badgers with a 1-1 split, winning their last meeting in 2012 84-74 in Las Vegas – Doug McDermott finished with 30 points

· Lost to Georgetown 71-61 in the 2k Classic

· Lost to Nebraska 70-58 in the B1G Tournament

· Made it to the Sweet 16 after beating Xavier on a buzzer beater only to fall victim to Notre Dame

· Return all three of their top scorers in Nigel Hayes (15.7ppg), Musketeer Killer Bronson Koenig (13.1ppg) and Ethan Happ (12.4ppg)

· A badger can weigh up to 35 pounds

· Freshman guard D’Mitrik Trice is the brother of former Sparty guard Travis Trice

· Head coach Greg Gard has never had a coaching job outside the state of Wisconsin

· Ranked 17th in the nation in scoring defense (63.8 points allowed per game)

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕☕☕☕


November 18th, 2016

***PARADISE JAM***

U.S Virgin Islands, St. Thomas – 7:30pm

1620 on your AM dial

WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS

PAC-12

2015-16 Record

9-22 overall – 1-17 in conference – #217 RPI

Notable Notes:

· Creighton currently sits at .500 against the Cougars with a 1-1 split, their last meeting coming right before WWII. The Jays won 51-36 on December 23rd, 1942. Their only other meeting occurred in 1940-41 in the West Regional of the NCAA Tournament, with Wazzu beating the Jays 48-39.

· Wazzu is a funny word to say, especially around children

· The Cougars lost 17 consecutive games to close out their season

· A cougar can be both a big cat and a slang term for an older woman who preys on younger men

· Wazzu returns their top two scoring threats in 6’10 PF Josh Hawkinson (15.4ppg) and 6’2 PG Ike Iroegbu (12.7ppg)

· Wazzu finished dead last in scoring margin in PAC-12 play sitting at a depressing -6.7

· Wazzu also finished dead last in turnover margin, sitting at -3.29

· The average high in St. Thomas is 87.1 degrees Fahrenheit in November.

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕


November 19th or 20th, 2016

***PARADISE JAM***

U.S Virgin Islands, St. Thomas – TBD

Win – CBS Sports Net / 1620am – 7:30pm – Nov. 20th

Lose – 1620am – 5:00pm – Nov. 19th

MONTANA GRIZZLIES or NC STATE WOLFPACK

Big Sky Conference / Atlantic Coast Conference

2015-16 Record

Montana: 21-12 overall – 14-4 in conference – #147 RPI

NC State: 16-17 overall – 5-13 in conference - #119 RPI

Notable Notes:

Montana

· Creighton currently holds a 5-1 advantage over the Grizzlies, with their last meeting in 1992-93 with the Jays winning 84-78

· Montana returns point guard and second leading scorer Walter Wright (averaged 13.2ppg)

· Head Coach Travis Decuire is a former player & graduate of Montana, led the Grizzlies to a regular season conference title in his first year of coaching in 2014-15, and has built a program with a star point guard named Walter Wright

· Grizzly bears are known to maul and eat people

· After extensive research, I’ve found that Walter Wright has never lived in Albuquerque

· Montana ranked first in conference in defensive rebounding percentage (.757)

· A Grizzly bear can weigh up to 600lbs but has never played organized basketball

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕ ½

NC State

· Creighton has never played NC State before*

o *- In my 2015-16 media guide it lists NCSU with a 1-0 record, but I was unable to find the results, thus it either was played and kept secret or was never played at all.

· NC State lost top scoring threat Cat Barber, but returns second leading scorer Abdul-Malik Abu (12.9ppg)

· Head Coach Mark Gottfried is of no relation to Gilbert Gottfried

· The Wolfpack features a 7’ freshman center by the name of Omer Yurtseven

· The Wolfpack also features a 6’9 344lb PF/C by the name of Beejay Anya

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕☕


November 21st, 2016

***PARADISE JAM***

U.S Virgin Islands, St. Thomas – TBD

CBS Sports Net / 1620 on your AM dial

OLE MISS REBELS / ORAL ROBERTS GOLDEN EAGLES / LOYOLA CHICAGO RAMBLERS / ST. JOSEPH’S HAWKS

South Eastern Conference / Summit League / Missouri Valley Conference / Atlantic 10 Conference

Notable Notes:

· How about we talk about this when the Bluejays get there, eh? I mean, I don’t want to be accused of being lazy or anything, but the fact that the Jays will play one of these four teams sort of leads to a lack of motivation to properly research all of them, and I especially don’t want to spend an ounce of my time researching a SEC team if I don’t have to. You can empathize with that, right? Maybe you can. Maybe you’re getting pretty heated and your anger can only be satiated by yelling at me in all caps, which you can do in the comments section or by shooting me an angry tweet at @crimebait - thanks for understanding.


November 26th, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 3:30pm

FS2 / 1620 on your AM dial

LOYOLA MARYLAND GREYHOUNDS

Patriot League

2015-16 Record

9-21 overall – 8-10 in conference – #257 RPI

Notable Notes:

· The Jays and Greyhounds faced off once on January 29th, 1959 with the Greyhounds winning it 69-65.

· Santa’s Little Helper, the dog from The Simpsons, is a greyhound

· Loyola returns their top two scoring threats in 6’0 guard Andre Walker (14.2ppg) and 6’7 forward Jarred Jones (13.3ppg)

· Head Coach G.G. Smith is the son of Memphis coach Tubby Smith

· There’s a nation-wide bus system called ‘Greyhound’ that is cheap but a danger to your physical health.

· Roster is stacked with six freshman

· The Loyola Maryland campus is 2.5 miles away from John’s Hopkins University and 4 miles away from the Baltimore Sun headquarters

· A Greyhound (dog) can reach 43 mph

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕


November 29th, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 7:30pm

FS1 / 1620 on your AM dial

UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK at BUFFALO BULLS

Mid-American Conference

2015-16 Record

20-15 overall – 10-8 in conference – #91 RPI

Notable Notes:

· Buffalo and Creighton have met once, on March 3rd 1922 with the Jays winning 36-27

· The Bulls won the MAC championship over Akron on a 3-pointer with ~2 seconds remaining, sending them into the NCAA tournament where they lost to Miami (FL) in the first round

· 15 people died in the ‘Running of the Bulls’ in 2015 in Pamplona, Spain

· Second leading scorer (and the player who made that game winning 3 against Akron) Blake Hamilton returns (6’6, 13.1ppg, 38% 3PT)

· Buffalo ranked 69th in the country in scoring offense

· The University of Buffalo campus is 2.1 miles away from a Buffalo Wild Wings and a 40 minute drive to Niagara Falls

· Buffalo ranked dead last in scoring defense in conference (75.3ppg)

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕☕


December 3rd, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 7:00pm

FS2 / 1620 on your AM dial

AKRON ZIPS

Mid-American Conference

2015-16 Record

26-9 overall – 13-5 in conference – #44 RPI

Notable Notes:

· Akron and Creighton have met three times, with Creighton winning twice. In their last affair on December 9th, 2012 Creighton won 77-61 – Doug McDermott scored 30 points

· Akron ranked 84th in scoring offense with 76.6ppg

· The Zips return top scorers Isaiah Johnson (6’10, 295lbs 13.6ppg) and Antino Jackson (5’11 11.8ppg)

· Akron’s mascot is Zippy the Kangaroo despite the fact the Akron Zoo does not have any Kangaroos

· Akron ranked 212th in FG% at 43.2%

· Akron lost to Buffalo in the MAC championship on a – hey wait a minute I’ve heard this story before

· Reigning national champion and BIG EAST friend Villanova beat Akron 75-56 last year

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕


December 7th, 2016

Pinnacle Bank Arena - Lincoln, NE – 8:00pm

BTN / 1620 on your AM dial

THAT TEAM FROM THE SOUTHWEST

B1G

2015-16 Record

16-18 overall – 6-12 in conference – #164 RPI

Notable Notes:

· The red team owns a 24-25 advantage over the Bluejays, but the Jays have won 5 straight against them

· Coach Miles has lost every time he’s faced Greg McDermott

· Detassling corn is a really hard job that’s forced upon children to repent for the losses of the red team’s hoops squad

· One time the red team had a tall Australian play center for them. I wonder if he knows how to get the Akron Zoo an actual Kangaroo.

· The red team plays really boring basketball

· This is still a rivalry so…

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕☕☕


December 9th*, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 6:30pm*

FS1* / 1620 on your AM dial

LONGWOOD LANCERS

Big South Conference

2015-16 Record

10-23 overall – 5-13 in conference – #319 RPI

Notable Notes:

· The Lancers and Bluejays have only met once, in 2012-13, where the Jays won 105-57 – all but three Jays on the active roster scored

· Longwood lost their four top scorers but return Darrion Allen who averaged 10.4ppg

· Longwood will be hosting the Vice Presidential debates on October 4th

· Lancer point guard Bryan Gee is son of head coach Jayson Gee

· Sophomore guard Isaiah Walton is a transfer from Iowa Western

· An actual lancer would be bad at basketball due to the pointiness of the lance

· Longwood University is located in – seriously - Farmville, Virginia (65 miles southwest of Richmond)

· Longwood also has secret societies that are so secret that they were written about in the school paper

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕

*- date and tv changed due to schedule conflict at CenturyLink Center Omaha - moved from 10th to the 9th & from FS2 to FS1 & from 1:30pm to 6:30pm


December 17th, 2016

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 7:30pm

FS2 / 1620 on your AM dial

ORAL ROBERTS GOLDEN EAGLES

Summit League

2015-16 Record

14-17 overall – 6-10 in conference – #155 RPI

Notable Notes:

· Oral Roberts and Creighton have played 10 times with the Jays holding a 6-4 lead in the series. The last matchup in Tulsa was a BracketBuster game on February 23rd, 2008, with Booker Woodfox hitting a game winning three to seal a 65-64 victory. Their last matchup in Omaha was on November 22nd of the same calendar year, with the Jays winning 87-65.

· The Golden Eagles lost superstar Obi Emegano (23.1ppg) but return 6’9 PF/C Albert Owens (9.9ppg, 5rpg)

· Oral Roberts crumbled in their first round Summit League Tournament game against South Dakota State, leading by 15 at one point only to lose by 3

· The dental school at Oral Roberts closed in 1985, seven years after it opened

· After winning 7 of 8 games in their non-conference slate the Golden Eagles lost 7 consecutive games, including a game to old friend Missouri State

· Oral Roberts led their conference in blocked shots per game (4.3)

· Whenever Oral Roberts is in the news it usually isn’t a good thing - seriously - no really, it isn’t - and their Honor Pledge is... something.

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕


December 20th, 2016

Wells Fargo Arena - Tempe, AZ – 8:00pm

ESPN2 / 1620 on your AM dial

ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS

PAC-12

2015-16 Record

15-17 overall – 5-13 in conference – #109 RPI

Notable Notes:

· The Jays and Sun Devils have played 9 times, with ASU holding a 5-4 advantage. ASU won in Omaha last year 79-77.

· ASU retained standout guard Tra Holder (14.2ppg 3.7apg) but lost Gerry Blakes (11ppg 5.3rpg) to graduation

· Bobby Hurley will coach in his second season at ASU

· Roster features only two seniors for the upcoming season

· ASU has an 84.3% admittance rate

· The average high in Tempe in December is 68 degrees Fahrenheit, with an average low of 38.

· A sun devil is a fictitious creature

· Coffee Mug Score: ☕☕☕ ½


January 14th, 2017

CenturyLink Center - Omaha, NE – 12:00pm

FS2 / 1620 on your AM dial

TRUMAN STATE BULLDOGS

Division II

2015-16 Record

21-9 overall – 12-6 in conference – #NA RPI

Notable Notes:

· Truman State and Creighton have played once, with the Bulldogs winning 54-41 on December 29th, 1947

· Creighton will play this 5 games deep into the conference schedule

· Redshirt Junior forward Connor Lusso played his high school ball at Millard West

· Truman State is named after President Harry Truman

· Truman State is the only public university in Missouri that refuses to accept everyone who applies

· The Bulldogs return second leading scorer & 5’11 point guard Kyle Kanaskie (12.1ppg)

· Head Coach Chris Foster was part of Northern Iowa’s powerhouse program back in the mid 2000’s – staying with the program and becoming an assistant coach until being hired at Truman State in 2013

· The Truman State website lists this as an Exhibition, but the Jays website does not

· Coffee Mug Score: ½ ☕

There are some soft spots in the schedule, sure, and perhaps you’re in the camp that believes the non-conference slate is for building your resume for the big dance, maybe you wanted bigger names coming to the CLink, maybe you think that playing the likes of Truman State midway through the first slog of conference games is an appalling gesture to college basketball scheduling.

As for myself, I’m just glad basketball exists. I like playing the likes of Longwood, ASU, the team from the southwest, and that cult-y school from down south.

Basketball exists for our pleasure and entertainment, but a lot of folks didn’t like this schedule:

Oh well!