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Marquette vs. Creighton Expert Pick – March 2, 2024

Marquette vs. Creighton Expert Pick – March 2, 2024

MARQUETTE VS. CREIGHTON EXPERT PICK – MARCH 2, 2024 – According to Joe Lunardi, Marquette is currently a two-seed, and Creighton is a three-seed.

The Golden Eagles only have three games left before the conference tournament, and Creighton has just two. Neither wants to suffer a loss and hurt their momentum heading into tournament season, and Marquette has a difficult task going into Omaha.

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Marquette vs. Creighton Head-To-Head

These Big East squads met in December at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee. Marquette won that game 72 to 67, led by Tyler Kolek’s 15 points, with Sean Jones contributing 15 off the bench. Creighton was outrebounded by 10 and lost the turnover battle by five.

Creighton shot 45.5% from the field but had 10 fewer free throws and 13 fewer field goals, which was the difference in the game. The Bluejays led by 11 early in the matchup but squandered the lead in the second half.

Baylor Scheierman is Creighton’s leading scorer with 18.2 points per game and had 23 in their first matchup.

Trey Alexander is also a key contributor, averaging 17.6 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game. 7’1’’ center Ryan Kalkbrenner also chips in 17.1 points on 64.8% shooting from the field.

They do not go deep into their bench, which could lead to problems if anyone gets into foul trouble. The coaching battle between Greg McDermott and Shaka Smart is as good a matchup as any and should play out dramatically.

Marquette vs. Creighton In-Season Trends

Both teams are in the top 15 of KenPom’s rankings, Marquette at 11 and Creighton at 12. They are very similar statistically, as well. Neither team is great at offensive rebounding, and they do not attempt many free throws per game.

They are efficient on offense and are both top-25 teams in terms of adjusted defensive efficiency on KenPom. Creighton relies on the three (39.3% of their points) more than Marquette (34.2% of their points). Marquette allows opponents to shoot 33.5% from behind the arc, which is good but not great. They must close out and get in the passing lanes, making it harder for Creighton to catch and shoot.

The Golden Eagles have thrived in this spot all season, albeit they have had few games being the underdog. They are 3-1 ATS as an away underdog and 4-1-1 ATS as an underdog.

They are also 12-5 ATS in conference games, which is exceptional in the Big East. Creighton has not fared as well as a home favorite. They are just 6-8 ATS as a home favorite and 8-10 ATS in conference games.

Another trend to watch is their ATS record against ranked opponents. Marquette is 4-1-1, while Creighton has only covered one out of four games.

The Pick

Creighton could go unconscious from behind the arc and run away from Marquette at home, but I believe Marquette will bring the energy in this matchup.

Shaka Smart knows as well as anyone that momentum heading into the tournament matters, and this is the perfect spot to start building. They need to defend the three well and make Creighton earn their points by making them use the entire shot clock.

Marquette +4.5

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