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Bulls take on No. 24 Marquette for a second time this season

Published: Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Updated: Wednesday, February 6, 2013 00:02

 

Round two of Marquette v. USF tips off tonight in the Sun Dome at 7 p.m., a little more than a week after the Bulls fell to the Golden Eagles at Marquette’s home court.

The Golden Eagles were ranked 25th in the nation and are now at No. 24 in the AP Top 25 polls.

What can USF learn as it flashes back to eight days ago?

The last time these teams met, the Bulls matched up nicely against Marquette in all areas but one, shooting, which eventually caused the 63-50 loss  for USF.

The Bulls shot an overall of 27 percent from the field — 19 in the second half — while Marquette averaged 55 percent by the end of the night.

It’s clear from the last game that the major focal points for the Bulls tonight will be shooting, offensive effort on the glass, and overall performance in the second half.

In their last meeting, USF experienced a drop in shooting from all over the court.

The Bulls were 37 percent in the first half from the field, shooting 57 percent from beyond the arch. In the second half, 19 percent from the field, 33 from three-point land.

Closing out and staying consistent has been an issue all season in Big East play, the last game against Marquette serving as a good example of that.

Though lack of size has taken a toll on the Bulls this season, USF only lost the rebound battle that night 34-30. However, the Bulls managed to snag 14 rebounds offensively while Marquette came down with 26 on
defense.

As far as the defense is concerned, USF lived up to being fourth in the Big East in three-point defense, holding Marquette to under 15 percent from the three-point range the entire night.

Though the Golden Eagles had no luck from deep, it was a buffet in the field.  Marquette, in addition to shooting above 50 percent in both halves of play, muscled its way to scoring 38 points in the paint.

Marquette will enter the Sun Dome trying to pick up the pieces from its loss at No.11 Louisville where the Golden Eagles were crushed, 70-51.

USF will try to bounce back from a close overtime loss to Connecticut where USF senior forward Toarlyn Fitzpatrick
exposed a UConn defense to score 22 points — similar to Marquette junior guard Vander Blue’s game against USF with 30 points.

Tonight’s game will also give USF a chance to beat a Top 25 team. Marquette is the third Top 25 to enter the Sun Dome, standing at No. 24 in the nation, boasting an 18-3 record against USF.

With home-team advantage on their side this time, tonight’s game has all the components necessary for the Bulls to win, in what could be the biggest upset of the season.

 

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