Inside Marquette: First 6 game BigE Pod down

It's impossible to disagree that Buzz Williams made the right decision in moving Jae Crowder into the starting lineup. The junior college transfer took about three minutes to become indispensible to the Golden Eagles, and the team is much better with him on the floor.

GETTING INSIDE
   It's impossible to disagree that Buzz Williams made the right decision in
moving Jae Crowder into the starting lineup. The junior college transfer took
about three minutes to become indispensible to the Golden Eagles, and the team
is much better with him on the floor.
   But as a result of that, Williams is getting much less production from his
bench.
   The Marquette reserves entered the DePaul game averaging 9.2 points per game
in conference play. While they padded those stats on Tuesday thanks to the
woeful opponent, the bench hasn't done much to encourage Williams to go to it
more often.
   The player with the most potential to provide that kind of reserve presence
is Vander Blue. The highly touted freshman was moved to the bench during Big
East play, but up until the DePaul contest he hadn't scored more than six points
in a league game and was averaging fewer than four points over the first five
games.
   He broke out against DePaul with 12 points on 5-of-6 shooting from the field.
Junior Cadougan and Joe Fulce had four apiece, with Erik Williams adding a free
throw. That gave Williams' squad 21 points off the pine, on 8-for-16 shooting,
along with 12 rebounds, five assists and five steals.
   Obviously, he'd take that on a nightly basis, but unfortunately this was the
lone time the Golden Eagles faced DePaul this season. Coming off a brutal 71-70
collapse against Louisville, however, a 30-point blowout of the Blue Demons was
just what he, and particularly his reserves, needed.
   BEYOND THE BOX SCORE: One way to avoid another tense late game situation is
to beat up on bad teams. A 30-point win over DePaul may not seem like much, but
considering the Blue Demons' only win over a league team in the last 43 contests
came over the Golden Eagles a year ago, and considering the team imploded down
the stretch on Saturday against Louisville, a 94-64 victory is a lot better than
many expected.

NOTES, QUOTES
   --Marquette shot 12 of 17 from 3-point range in a victory over Notre Dame on
Jan. 10, but it couldn't carry that over to the next game. In the loss to
Louisville, the Golden Eagles shot 4-for-17 from long range.
   --Senior G Dwight Buycks was a 27.3 percent 3-point shooter in his first
season at Marquette a year ago. He was up to 44 percent this season through Jan.
16, and he was 10-for-14 over his last three games from beyond the arc.
   BY THE NUMBERS: 24-5 -- Louisville's game-ending run against Marquette. That
turned what had been an 18-point lead with 5:44 to play into a 71-70 defeat.
   QUOTE TO NOTE: "It's hard anytime you go on the road and lose, it's hard --
particularly when you are ahead or are in a position to win. But like every
other coach in our league says, I wish we could feel sorry for ourselves and cry
about it, but we play DePaul on Tuesday. So we have to hope for safe travel home
and start again tomorrow to prepare for DePaul." -- Coach Buzz Williams, after
the loss to Louisville.

STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
   THIS WEEK'S GAME:
   --at Notre Dame, Jan. 22
   KEY MATCHUPS: Let's just say that the Fighting Irish should be ready for this
one. These teams just met on Jan. 10, and the Golden Eagles shot the lights out
in a 79-57 shellacking of the then-No. 11 Irish. Notre Dame will certainly be
more ready for Dwight Buycks, who went 5-for-5 from 3-point range in that
victory.
   FUTURES MARKET: Jamal Ferguson recently gave Marquette a verbal commitment,
and he will become the first member of the 2012 recruiting class once he signs
his letter-of-intent. The 6-foot-8 forward picked the Golden Eagles over
Georgetown, making the commitment extra special since it keeps him away from a
Big East rival.

PLAYER NOTES
   --Sophomore G Junior Cadougan entered the DePaul game shooting 54.8% from the
free throw line, but it looks as if he's starting to figure things out. He went
2-for-2 from the stripe against the Blue Demons and is 9-for-10 over his last
two games.
   --Sophomore F Erik Williams got into the game late against DePaul and went
1-for-2 from the free throw line. That marked his first point in a little more
than a year in Big East play, since he hit a free throw against Providence on
Jan. 17, 2010.
   --Freshman G Vander Blue played just five minutes against the Cardinals.
Coach Buzz Williams said after the game that the move wasn't injury-related, but
rather because of Blue's performance. Blue had three fouls and one turnover in
those five minutes.


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