The UConn Huskies have beaten the Marquette Golden Eagles once this year, but with their tournament chances on the line, look for Marquette to come return home victorious.
Golden Eagles are the one team in the Big East that is really still up in the
air about their spot in the NCAA Tournament. They'll look to improve their
resume in a huge way tonight at the Gampel Pavilion when they take on the Connecticut Huskies.
Marquette's Road Woes
The Golden Eagles
are a great, stingy club, and Head Coach Buzz Williams does a fantastic job
getting it ready for the biggest games of the season. Unfortunately, Marquette
just hasn't figured out how to make it work on the road this year, as it is
just 3-8 SU this season outside of the Bradley Center, including going 3-6 SU
in legitimate road games.
The only road wins
to speak of this year aren't anything all that special, as there is no excuse
not to beat the South Florida Bulls, Rutgers Scarlet Knights, and
Wisconsin-Milwaukee Panthers regardless of where the game is being played.
The good news for
the Golden Eagles is that they consistently find ways to stick around in these
road games, and they're due for the upset. They only lost by nine at
Georgetown, five at Villanova, five at Notre Dame, one at Louisville, eight at
Pittsburgh, and one at Vanderbilt. There's also a three point loss on a neutral
site to Gonzaga, and a five point loss at a neutral venue against Duke to boot.
Walker's a One Man Show
It's really sad to
think that all of this illegal recruiting that Head Coach Jim Calhoun did couldn't
at least bring one more player in to help out Kemba Walker... The NCAA cracked
down on Coach Calhoun earlier this week, suspending him for three games in the
upcoming season in the Big East, which does essentially leave this year's team
out of it. He won't be here on Thursday night due to a funeral, having nothing
to do with the violations.
However, Kemba Walker is
still all by himself. He's getting very little out of Alex Oriakhi, relatively
speaking, and he really needs to be a tremendous star to have any hope of the UConn Huskies winning at this point. UConn's star has scored at least 21 points twice
in his last seven games. It is 2-0 SU and ATS in those battles. In the five
games out of his last seven in which he didn't score at least 21 points, the
Huskies are just 1-4 SU and are winless.
Eagles Should Fly High Against Huskies
The UConn Huskies did
win the meeting earlier this year between these two teams at the Bradley Center
by the count of 76-68, marking their third win both SU and ATS in the last four
meetings of these Big East brothers. Fortunately for Marquette, it knows what
it is like to win here at the XL Center, having done so once in 2010, and once
The sportsbooks have
given the Golden Eagles a 5 1/2 point head start in this one, and this is an
advantage that we are going to take all the way to the bank. It should be
another close call one way or the other, but don't be shocked if Marquette ends
up getting that big time signature victory on Thursday that it desperately
My Pick: Take Marquette