The Butler Bulldogs continue their road trip to Omaha, Nebraska, to take on the Creighton Bluejays on Wednesday night at 9 ET. The game will be one of the biggest matchups in College basketball for the week and will be televised on FS1.
The Bluejays recently took their first loss of the season at the hands of then #1 Villanova. Other than that Creighton has had a successful season. Part of this stems from their lack of challenging opponents.
Creighton has only played two ranked teams coming into the Butler game: the loss against Nova and a win in their second game of the season against Wisconsin. The Dawgs, on the other hand, have played and defeated all four of their ranked opponents.
Creighton has a has a high powered offense, averaging 87.5 points per game. There are also four players that average over ten points per game for the Bluejays (their 7’ big man and three guards).
This could be a problem for the Dawgs who have struggled to guard elite scoring guards in the past. Freshman Kamar Baldwin has been a blessing for Butler in this respect- he is able to play defense and score against tough defenses. Baldwin had a career high 16 points and four steals in Butler’s last game.
Butler will have to be strong defensively at the perimeter as well. The Bluejays shoot 42% from behind the arc on the season, and have already made nearly 150 long balls already this season. They have six players that shoot over 40% from three.
Creighton’s big man Justin Patton is their second leading scorer with 14 points per game, and nearly seven rebounds per game. For most teams, he would be a problem, but the Dawgs have been locking down big men all season. On the other end, Patton is a big body who can alter shots in the paint and averages a couple of blocks every game.
Both Butler and Creighton have been great programs to watch this season, and taking on the Bluejays in Omaha will be no easy task. Get ready for a thriller, and Go Dawgs!
Players to Watch-
Kamar Baldwin is coming off of his season high for points in last weekend’s game against Georgetown. The Freshman guard has been a spark for the Bulldogs and will be their only hope to guard the scoring guards of Creighton. Look for Baldwin to be a force offensively and defensively against the Bluejays.
Nate Fowler had a fantastic game against Georgetown as well, reaching double digits in scoring for just the second time this season. The sophomore center will be instrumental in stopping Creighton’s post players, especially if Wideman or Chrabascz get into foul trouble.
Maurice Watson Jr. makes up for his small stature with his skill as a distributor: leading all of college basketball in assists per game. He also averages 13 points per game. Butler will have to stop Creighton’s floor general if they want to come out of Omaha with a win.
Marcus Foster is Creighton’s leading scorer with 18.6 points per game and will be a ‘must stop’ for Kamar Baldwin and the Bulldogs in this matchup. If Butler can’t contain him, things might get ugly.
Photo Credit: Boston Herald.com