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Marquette basketball notes

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After playing seven games in just 15 days, the Marquette men’s basketball team will have its longest layoff between games — six consecutive days.

The Golden Eagles are 5-2 thus far, having lost to No. 1 Duke and No. 24 Gonzaga before beating Wisconsin-Milwaukee last week.

Cross-town rivalry?
There’s not much rivalry to the match-up between Marquette and Wisconsin-Milwaukee.  The Golden Eagles lead the series 38-0 all-time.

Saturday’s match-up was about as close as any game between the two has been, and it wasn’t even all that close. Marquette let the Panthers climb back into a game it had led by as many as 18 points with 15:31 left in the second half before winning, 75-72.

6: Predator’s lucky number
Junior forward Jae Crowder has grabbed six rebounds or more in all five of Marquette’s victories. In the Golden Eagles’ losses, Crowder has notched only seven total rebounds — three against Duke and four against Gonzaga.

Using faulty logic, one can safely assume that as long as Crowder cleans up six boards, Marquette will win.

Speaking of rebounding…
Marquette has been out-rebounded in each of its past three games after winning the board battle in its first four. Against Duke, Gonzaga and Milwaukee, Marquette gave up 117 boards and collected only 86.

Prior to last week, the Golden Eagles had out-rebounded opponents 176 to 118. Going without senior forward Joe Fulce and injured freshman forward Davante Gardner has really hurt Marquette in this area.

Also of note, Marquette is 4-0 when holding opponents to 34 or fewer rebounds.

Heating up
Junior guard Darius Johnson-Odom seems to have finally found his scoring touch, lighting up the Panthers for 29 points on Saturday. Johnson-Odom set a career high with five three-pointers, 29 points and 10 field goals made.

He has now recorded five consecutive double-digit scoring games and brought his scoring average up to 14.4 points per game.

The high-flying junior has done a better job of getting to the free throw line this year and connecting on the freebies. Johnson-Odom is shooting at a 79.5 percent clip from the line this year, compared to 67.7 percent last season, and is averaging 5.6 free throw attempts per game, compared to 2.8 attempts last season.

This bodes well for the Golden Eagles — Marquette is 5-1 when Johnson-Odom hits at least four free throws.

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