TREBBY: Long way to go before Big Monday

Matthew Trebby
Matthew Trebby

Having attended Marquette games at the BMO Harris Bradley Center for the last 15 years, I can tell you next Monday’s game against Syracuse has the potential to be special. It will probably be the biggest regular season game for the Golden Eagles since 2003.

Their next two games are just as, if not more, important as the game against Syracuse, though.

With wins at Seton Hall on Tuesday night and Villanova on Saturday, Marquette could put itself on the track to winning its first regular season Big East championship.

The Big East standings are currently packed at the top. With Notre Dame’s win over Pittsburgh last night, there are five teams within a game of the lead, as of Tuesday night.

Marquette and Syracuse are part of a three-way tie with Georgetown for first right now at 9-3, and all three have at least one critical game in the next seven days. The Orange will host the Hoyas on Saturday in one of the final chapters of one of college basketball’s most storied rivalries.

Before Monday’s game, though, Marquette could give itself a huge boost with two road wins. Both games are winnable and would give the team a bit more confidence going forward in away games.

If the Golden Eagles win both games, they welcome Syracuse with an 11-3 record in the Big East, which is ideal. I’ll go out on a limb right now and say Jim Boeheim’s team will take care of Providence on Wednesday at the Carrier Dome and will beat the enigma that is Georgetown on Saturday. I do not see the Hoyas continuing their recent streak on the road against a team as good as Syracuse. They’ll have equaled Marquette’s 11-3 mark, which would make Monday’s game all the more important.

Unless either Marquette or Syracuse loses its next two – don’t put it past the Golden Eagles with both upcoming games being on the road – fans will be treated to a game atmosphere resembling the NCAA Tournament. The Golden Eagles could go a long way in putting their stamp on the Big East with a regular season championship and also could help ensure Syracuse doesn’t finish its final season in the Big East as conference champions.

First, Marquette has to avoid defeat at Seton Hall and Villanova, and hopefully, the Golden Eagles take care of business on the road so their game against Syracuse has the potential to be as memorable as I want it to be. If all goes as planned, Marquette’s last Big East matchup against the Orange will possibly be its most memorable conference game in history.