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Marquette and Creighton square off in the Big East Tournament Quarterfinals

Both teams look to bolster NCAA tournament profile with a win

Creighton Bluejays v Marquette Golden Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

On Thursday, March 10th, the Marquette Golden Eagles and Creighton Bluejays will face off in the quarterfinal round of the Big East Tournament. The matchup has been competitive all of this season, with one double-overtime game in Milwaukee (Creighton victory, 75-69) and a one-point game in the second matchup in Omaha (Creighton victory, 83-82). Marquette will look to avoid the season sweep and advance to the Big East semis, while Creighton looks to establish a stronger tournament profile with a potential quadrant one victory.

How to watch Marquette v. Creighton

Time: 2:30 pm ET (Pending the finish of Butler v. Providence)


Watch Online: Fox Sports Go

It is already pretty difficult for what I would call evenly-matched teams to beat or be beaten by the other team three times. What makes it more difficult for Creighton to sweep Marquette would be the loss of Ryan Nembhard, who contributed 29 points in the two meetings against the Golden Eagles. Injuries have plagued this season for the Bluejays, and without their lead point-guard, this game could be an issue for Creighton.

That is not meant to undermine Marquette and what Shaka Smart has done with Marquette in just his first year. The Golden Eagles (19-11, 11-8) have been a legitimate threat for every conference opponent this season. Justin Lewis has had a tremendous season, posting 17.1 PPG, 8.0 RPG, and 1.8 APG on 45.2% shooting from the field. Darryl Morsell averaged 13.3 PPG and was also able to distribute the ball in place of Tyler Kolek at times with 2.6 APG. Tyler Kolek, the starting point-guard, is averaging 5.7 APG, Greg Elliott and Kam Jones are averaging 7.5 PPG with three-point percentages around 40%, and other major pieces (Kur Kuath, Olivier-Maxence Prosper, Oso Ighodaro) are adding depth to this team.

The Bluejays (20-10, 12-7) wished they had some of that depth. They are usually dressing about ten players a game nowadays, and only play seven or eight. Still, they have quality pieces that can score when they need it, like Ryan Hawkins with 14.3 PPG or Ryan Kalkbrenner with 12.7 PPG. The team depends on their starters more than most in the Big East, with just 6 bench points in the past three games for Creighton (where they have gone 1-2). With question marks as to who will produce off the bench, the starters look to keep this Creighton team moving in a positive direction without Nembhard.