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9:00 PM EST: Marquette -17.5 (3 Units)
Depaul just fired their Head Coach after a terrible year last year and a 3-15 start to this year. They're probably better off and they have a quality interim HC stepping in, but he just took over on Monday. Those positive effects, if any, will take some time to take hold. The talent isn't there anyway and it wasn't there last year. They are currently the worst Power 6 team in the Nation and changing your Head Coach doesn't change who's on the floor.
Laying this many points on the road would usually be a no-no but it's in Depaul and they have one of the worst home court advantages in the Nation. When you suck at basketball for so long you don't get fans to support you. Marquette is an ascending team that needs Big East wins in a bad way. After a strong start to the season with a Win over Kansas and taking Purdue down to the Wire in the Bahamas, they've struggled in conference play. They're just 4-3 in Big East play so far. They're the reigning Big East regular season and conference tournament champs and were #5 in the pre-season poll.
They're coming off a strong win in a tight one @ St. John's and blew out Villanova at Home the game prior. This is the perfect opportunity to keep the ball rolling and it's an A+ matchup for plenty of obvious reasons but 1 in particular. Marquette ranks 10th in opponent turnovers per game at 16.2 and their high-pressure defense is suffocating. Depaul ranks 294th averaging 13.6 turnovers per game and 328th in opponent turnovers per game.
The 1 area of concern for Marquette this year has been rebounding. They're just 249th in rebound rate and it's because they play a bit smaller. Depaul doesn't have the ability to exploit that though and is far worse in that same category ranking 332nd. Marquette should see plenty of extra possessions against Depaul's 274th ranked Adj Defense and they need to start stacking wins in a big way to become a top seed like everyone thought they would become March Madness.
The coaching change could also have an extremely negative effect. The players shoulder some of that blame but they also came to play for that Head Coach. It could also revitalize them and give them a fresh slate but even if that happens and they come out of the gates hot this game will settle in eventually. Marquette is just a much more talented squad and they're starting to play their brand of basketball again.