10. Marquette (13-5)
A lot has gone right in recent years for Shaka Smart and this Marquette program, who won the Big East last season and returned some talented pieces for another run this year. The Golden Eagles already own three conference losses and are coming off a tough home loss to Butler in their worst performance of the year. Fortunately, these Golden Eagles weren’t just going to roll over and bounced back nicely with two games this week.
Back on Monday night the Golden Eagles welcomed Villanova to town and gained an 87-74 win over those Wildcats. Kam Jones led the charge with 22 points while Tyler Kolek had 21 points and 11 assists. Marquette then got a key road win over the weekend, surviving 73-72 at St. John’s on Saturday. All five starters were double-digit scorers, including 17 from Oso Ighodaro as Marquette shot 54% as a team.
Last week was about insult and injury, but this week was about getting back on track and the Golden Eagles did just that. This starting lineup has the strength to win important games both in this league and in the postseason. The interior offense continues to be a strength and we’ll see how that continues in the weeks to come. Next week poses another road test at DePaul, with the Golden Eagles looking for a rare winning streak away from home.