2013 NCAA Tournament: Marquette Golden Eagles' Vander Blue Has to Have Big Game In Sweet 16

By Trevor Lowry
Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

The No. 3 Marquette Golden Eagles have not looked like the best team in the 2013 NCAA Tournament, but they have still managed to make it to the Sweet 16. The No. 2 Miami Hurricanes will be a very tough opponent and Marquette’s Vander Blue is going to have to come up big if the Golden Eagles want to move on.

In two tournament games, Marquette has won by a combined three points. That isn’t exactly what a No. 3 seed is expected to do in the Big Dance, but at least this team has a chance to still make the Elite Eight. Anyways, in both of those games, Blue has been amazing.

That is, of course, if you consider making a game-winning layup against No. 14 Davidson and dropping 29 points against No. 6 Butler amazing.

Blue is averaging 22.5 points per game, which is almost 10 points higher than his season average. He is also shooting 5-of-10 from behind the arc, is a perfect 12-12 from the charity stripe and has five steals.

If it weren’t for Blue, Marquette would have lost in the second round.

The Golden Eagles are only averaging 66.5 points per game in the tourney, which makes Blue’s offensive production that much more valuable, since it has essentially been a third of the offense.

If Blue cannot come up big once again tonight against Miami, the Golden Eagles will be packing their bags. Blue isn’t the only reason why Marquette has made it this far though. He is just the main reason.

Heck, Jamil Wilson put up 14 points in the second round and 13 points against Butler. Not too bad for someone who is averaging 9.7 points per game on the year. We all know that Blue is going to have to play his best game yet if Marquette plans on moving on to the Elite Eight though.


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