TV Schedule: Saturday, Jan. 30, 12:00 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1
Arena: BMO Harris Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI
After a hot start to the 2015-16 season, the Butler Bulldogs have cooled off a bit coming into Big East play, losing five of their last eight games. Once thought to be one of the better teams in the country, Butler needs to start turning its season around now, or it risks missing out on the 2016 NCAA tournament.
Next up for the Bulldogs is a difficult road matchup with the Marquette Golden Eagles, who have won two straight games to get back on track after a three-game losing streak.
The Golden Eagles are a team many thought would be playing for the future this season with the NIT as the ultimate goal. Through January, however, Marquette has proven itself to be much more talented than many expected with a road win over the Providence Friars and close losses to several ranked opponents. A young team with talent all over the roster, Marquette might struggle a bit to finish out conference play, but will be the team to watch heading into 2016-17.
Although I believe the Golden Eagles have what it takes to make a deep Big East tournament run, I think Butler finally breaks out of its road slump with a victory on Saturday afternoon. Marquette’s defense is questionable, and the Bulldogs’ offense is absolutely fantastic. Golden Eagles’ Henry Ellenson should have his way with the Butler defense, but the Bulldogs should end up on top in this one, as Kellen Dunham, Roosevelt Jones and Kelan Martin are far too much for Marquette to handle.
Prediction: Butler 78, Marquette 69