Marquette Wire

MUBB recruits react to first NCAA bid since 2013

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As Marquette gathered on Selection Sunday to learn its NCAA fate at the Union Sports Annex, another important group of people watched closely, but under significantly different circumstances.

That group wasn’t donning team-issued Jordan gear or awaiting in a packed sports restaurant. There weren’t television cameras ready to capture their reactions.

That group, spanning geographically from California to New York, were Marquette’s recruits.

“(I had) no reaction,” Class of 2018 target Jarvis Thomas, a power forward from Orono, Minnesota, said. “I knew they were making it.”

“It’s cool to see a few of the teams that are recruiting me in the tournament and that I could be playing in the tournament in the next few years,” said fellow Class of 2018 target Race Thompson, a power forward from Plymouth, Minnesota.

Class of 2017 signee Ike Eke’s excitement went a bit further.

“Marquette making the tournament was what I was hoping for,” Eke said. “It was such a good feeling to the fact that I prayed about it.”

Recruits’ expectations for Marquette varied from winning one game to winning the entire tournament.

“I think I had them in round two in my bracket,” Thomas said. “But they could’ve made it to the Sweet 16.”

Eke had much higher expectations.

“My expectation was for them to win it all, because I think they can do it,” Eke said. “They have the talent and guys who can do it.”

Eke tweeted a link to his bracket a few days before the tournament, where he had Marquette upsetting Kansas to win the tournament.

Even though Marquette’s early exit from the tournament was not what Eke was expecting, he thought the team played “very well.”

Thomas was also optimistic, describing the game as a “good fight, but Markus Howard could’ve stepped up more.”

Howard finished the game with a career-high six turnovers.

For Thomas and Thompson, Marquette’s performance in the tournament hardly impacted their odds of choosing the blue and gold.

“Everything remains the same,” Thomas said.

“It doesn’t really matter,” Thompson echoed. “I just want to feel at home and comfortable.”

Thomas told the Wire last month that Marquette and Arizona State have recruited him the most.

Thompson, an AAU teammate of Thomas, listed Iowa State, Minnesota, Creighton, Marquette and Baylor as schools showing the most interest.

Thompson said that he does not have any visits planned and will make a decision after AAU season. His team, D1 Minnesota, is scheduled to finish its last tournament July 30.

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