2013-14 Creighton Men’s Basketball Game #5 • Wooden Legacy • #20 Creighton vs. Arizona State • Thursday, Nov. 28, 2013 • 10:00 pm CST
Arizona State vs. #20 Creighton Bluejays Titan Gym (4,000) • Fullerton, Calif. Radio: KOZN 1620 AM, www.1620thezone.com TV: ESPN2; ESPN3.com Series History: Arizona State leads, 4-3 Last Meeting: Creighton 87, Arizona State 73 on 11/24/12 in Las Vegas, Nev.
Wooden Legacy No. 20 Creighton (4-0) begins a stretch of four games in six days when it treks west for three games in the Wooden Legacy, followed by a Dec. 3 game at Long Beach State. Games on Thursday and Friday will take place at Titan Gym (4,000) in Fullerton, Calif., while the final day of games will be on Sunday at the Honda Center (18,336) in Anaheim, Calif. Below is the tournament schedule, which begins with a 10 pm Central Thanksgiving night game vs. Arizona State (6-0): Thursday, Nov. 28 Time (CST) G1: Miami vs. George Washington (ESPNU) 1 pm G2: #25 Marquette at Cal St. Fullerton (ESPN2) 3:30 pm G3: Charleston vs. San Diego State (ESPNU) 7:30 pm G4: #20 Creighton vs. Arizona State (ESPN2) 10 pm
Friday, Nov. 29 Time (CST) G5: G1 Winner vs. G2 Winner (ESPN or ESPN2) 2:30 pm G6: G1 Loser vs. G2 Loser (ESPN3) 5 pm G7: G3 Winner vs. G4 Winner (ESPN2) 8:30 pm G8: G3 Loser vs. G4 Loser (ESPNU) 11 pm
Sunday, Dec. 1 Time (CST) G9: G6 Loser vs. G8 Loser (ESPN3) 1 pm G10: G6 Winner vs. G8 Winner (ESPNU) 3:30 pm G11: G5 Loser vs. G7 Loser (ESPNU) 6 pm G12: G5 Winner vs. G7 Winner (ESPN2) 8:30 pm Radio Broadcast Information KOZN (1620 The Zone) will broadcast all Creighton men’s basketball games during the 2013-14 season. John Bishop and former Bluejay Nick Bahe will call the action. The broadcast is also webcast live at www.1620thezone.com. The pregame show “Bluejay Shootaround” is hosted by Josh Peterson and former Bluejay Josh Dotzler, airing from 7:00 - 9:30 p.m. Following the game, Tim Krueger and Heath Gunderson will host “Overtime” for approximately one hour, while also taking calls.
Broadcast Information Thursday’s game will air nationally on ESPN2. Dave Flemming and Sean Farnham will announce the game. The game will also be webcast at no charge on ESPN3.com.
Live Stats Information All of Creighton’s games this season will have free live stats. Visit www.gocreighton.com and click on the Live Stats tab on the top of the page for a link the exact URL. Home games can also be followed by those who have mobile devices with internet capability at www.gocreightonstats.com.
Scouting No. 20 Creighton Creighton is 4-0 on the young season, with victories over Alcorn State (107-61), UMKC (96-70), Saint Joseph’s (83-79) and Tulsa (82-72) to open the season. The Bluejays returned 11 lettermen and four starters from last year’s 28-8 team that reached the third round of the NCAA Tournament for a second consecutive season. Senior Doug McDermott (27.5 ppg., 8.0 rpg., 50.0 3FG%) has 110 points in 121 minutes this winter and is the nation’s only returning consensus First Team All-American, as well as the nation’s leading returning scorer. He’s led the Jays in scoring and rebounding each of the past three seasons, and named Preseason BIG EAST Player of the Year by league coaches. The other three returning starters include guards Grant Gibbs (4.0 ppg., 5.8 apg.), Jahenns Manigat (6.8 ppg.) and Austin Chatman (11.0 ppg., 6.3 apg., 5.0 rpg.). Gibbs led the MVC in assists each of the last two years and was awarded a sixth year of eligibility in early July. Junior center Will Artino (7.5 ppg., 4.5 rpg.) and reigning MVC Sixth Man of the Year Ethan Wragge (11.3 ppg., 56.0 3FG%) will see time on the front line to help replace starting center Gregory Echenique (9.7 ppg., 6.6 rpg., 1.7 bpg.). Creighton was picked to finish third in the 10-team BIG EAST Conference this winter.
Scouting Arizona State Arizona State is off to its first 6-0 start since 1980-81, including impressive wins over UNLV and No. 25 Marquette this season. The Sun Devils boast a prolific offense, with All-American Jahii Carson (23.0 ppg., 5.4 apg.) and Penn State transfer Jermaine Marshall (16.7 ppg.) leading the way. Jordan Bachynski (14.0 ppg., 11.8 rpg., 4.8 bpg.) anchors the post and has a double-double in all six games after a total of five double-doubles in his first three years of college (89 games). His game-saving swat in the final seconds keyed ASU’s one-point win vs. Marquette on Monday in Tempe. The Sun Devils average 84.8 points per game, shooting 49.4 percent from the field, 40.9 percent from three-point range and 67.6 percent at the line. The Coaches Greg McDermott (Northern Iowa, 1988) is in his fourth season as head coach at Creighton. He led CU to a 28-8 mark last year, and is now 84-30 with the Bluejays. McDermott has previously been a head coach at Iowa State (2006-10), Northern Iowa (2001-06), North Dakota State (2000-01) and Wayne State (1994-2000). He owns a career mark of 363-225 in his 20th season and is 232-161 in his 13th Division I campaign. McDermott is assisted by Darian DeVries, Steve Lutz and Patrick Sellers. Arizona State is coached by Herb Sendek, who is 126-109 in his eighth year with the Sun Devils. That moves his career mark to 380-267 in 21 years overall when you include stints at Miami (Ohio) and North Carolina State. Sendek is assisted by Eric Musselman, Larry Greer and Stan Johnson.
Last Game Recap Doug McDermott had 33 points and 15 rebounds, while Austin Chatman netted a career-high 19 points, to lead Creighton to an 82-72 win vs. Tulsa on Saturday. Tulsa was led by 21 points from Rashad Smith.
The Series With Arizona State Arizona State has won four of seven previous meetings with Creighton, but the Bluejays won an 87-73 match-up in Las Vegas last November in the only previous meeting at a neutral site. Creighton’s Greg McDermott is 1-0 against both Arizona State and Herb Sendek.
Last Year vs. Arizona State Creighton defeated Arizona State 87-73 in the finals of the 2012 Las Vegas Invitational. Doug McDermott had 29 points and nine rebounds to earn Tournament MVP honors, while Ethan Wragge had 13 points and five rebounds in 19 minutes. ASU was paced by 30 points from Jahii Carson and 17 points by Carrick Felix. Creighton scored on 11 of its first 15 possessions and led 27-9 at the second media timeout before settling for a 45-36 halftime lead.
Best Tournament Around? Five of the eight teams in this week’s Wooden Legacy owned a top-95 RPI last season, including four top-35 teams (4 Miami; 13 Marquette; 22 Creighton; 35 San Diego State). That makes the Wooden Legacy one of two tournaments nationwide with four top-35 teams from a year ago, joining last week’s Puerto Rico Tip-off. Tournament Tested When Creighton heads to the Wooden Legacy this weekend, it’ll bring with it a strong tradition of tournament play. Since the start of the 1998-99 season, Creighton has participated in 10 in-season and 15 conference tournaments. In those events, the Jays are staggering 57-14. CU is 29-7 with five in-season titles and 28-7 with eight league tourney crowns in those 15 seasons. Creighton is 14-0 in regular-season tournaments the past two years, going 8-0 in MTE’s (including double-digit wins over Iowa, Wisconsin and Arizona State) and 6-0 at the MVC Tournament.
Back-to-Back? Since the start of the 2001-02 season, Creighton is 33-6 when it plays on back-to-back (or 3 straight) days. That includes a 14-1 mark on day one, a 13-4 mark on day two, and a 6-1 mark when playing for a third straight day.
They’re Men, They’re 40+ Creighton has scored at least 40 points in all eight halves it has played this season, while allowing just two such halves itself. Nationally, the only teams that have scored 40 or more points in every half they’ve played this season (through Sunday) were Creighton, Duke, North Dakota and Oklahoma State. Creighton also joins Evansville, Gonzaga, Iowa, Duke, North Dakota, Oklahoma State, Boise State and North Carolina as the only teams nationally to score 82 points or more in every game this winter, as well.
Let’s Chat About Austin Junior point guard Austin Chatman had the best scoring day of his Creighton tenure last Saturday when he scored a career-high 19 points in an 82-72 win vs. Tulsa. Chatman had 15 points before the break and made a career-best four three-point hoops on the afternoon. He entered Monday as one of six players nationally to average at least 11.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 6.2 assists per game.
BCS Busters One frequent question about how Creighton will handle the move to the BIG EAST is how they’ll handle the nightly rigors of playing against “BCS” competition on a regular basis. In the past three seasons, Creighton is 9-2 against teams from those leagues, with both losses coming in the Round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament. Six of the nine wins came by double-digits, and just two of the games took place in Omaha. Individually, Doug McDermott has scored at least 20 points in all but one of those games (Alabama), and in that one he had a double-double. D. McDermott Date Opponent Score Pts Reb. 11/20/11 vs. Iowa W 82-59 25 9 12/04/11 Nebraska W 76-66 24 12 12/22/11 Northwestern W 87-79 27 5 03/16/12 vs. Alabama W 58-57 16 10 03/18/12 vs. #4 N. Carolina L 73-87 20 9 11/23/12 vs. Wisconsin W 84-74 30 8 11/24/12 vs. Arizona State W 87-73 29 9 12/06/12 at Nebraska W 64-42 27 4 12/15/12 at California W 74-64 34 9 03/22/13 vs. Cincinnati W 67-63 27 11 03/24/13 vs. #6 Duke L 50-66 21 9
Lighting Up The Scoreboard In 13 games of last year’s Anaheim Classic and Wooden Legacy, no team scored more than 78 in any game. This season, Creighton is averaging 92.0 points per game while Arizona State scores at a 84.3 per game clip. When Creighton played Arizona State last season in last year’s Las Vegas Invitational, the Bluejays put up 87 points on the Sun Devils, and CU has scored 84 or more in all three victories in history vs. ASU. Creighton has scored 82 or more points in each of its last eight games associated with an MTE, including all four Las Vegas Invitational games in 2012 and all four contests in the Dale Howard Classic in 2011.
A KenPom Delight? Noted statistician Ken Pomeroy’s website, KenPom.com has numerous ratings that break down team efficiencies. The site consistently ranks Creighton’s offense among the nation’s best. Pomeroy’s site (through Sunday) ranks Creighton with the third-best mark nationwide in “Adjusted Efficiency” at 118.3 points per 100 possessions, second in “Assists Per Field Goals Made” at 69.8 percent and third in “Effective Field Goal %” at 63.1 percent.
Senior Citizen Grant Gibbs has heard all the “old man” jokes you’d expect to be directed toward a sixth-year senior who will be 24 years, four months and six days old when Wooden Legacy play tips off on Thursday night. Gibbs, born July 22, 1989, is nearly six years older than his youngest teammate, Eric Roberts (June 7, 1995). One more mind-boggling stat regarding Gibbs’s age. He’s a full month older than former Arizona State (and current NBA) star James Harden, who was born August 26, 1989. Harden was named to the NBA’s All-Rookie Team in 2009-10, won an Olympic Gold Medal in 2012, selected as an All-Star in 2013 and has scored more than 5,000 points in the NBA to date.
Rare Air Doug McDermott had 33 points and 15 rebounds in Saturday’s win vs. Tulsa, leading to some additional research on the senior All-American. McDermott’s 33/15 is the nation’s only performance (through 11/25) of at least 30 points and 15 or more rebounds this season in a regulation game. McDermott is the first Creighton player with at least 33 points and 15 rebounds since Bob Harstad’s 33/17 on December 6, 1989 vs. Cleveland State.
Legend....ary Performance His senior season is just four games old, but Doug McDermott’s 27.5 points per game and 8.0 rebounds per game averages would put him in some pretty lofty company if he could maintain those averages. Since 1997-98, only three college players (Jason Conley, Reggie Williams and Charron Fisher) have finished an NCAA season with those averages for an entire campaign. In NBA history, 21 of the 24 men to average at least 27.5 ppg. and 8.0 rpg. over a full season are in the Hall of Fame, and Shaquille O’Neal is a shoo-in to make it 22-of-24 when he becomes eligible. O’Neal, in 2000-01 with the Lakers, is the NBA’s last player to average at least 27.5 points and 8.0 rebounds for a season, and the last 10 men to do it in the NBA were O’Neal, Hakeem Olajuwon, David Robinson, Karl Malone, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Moses Malone and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Bird (twice) is the only NBA player to ever average at least 27.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.0 three-pointer per game.
33 x 2? Since 1990, only two Creighton players have scored 30 points in consecutive games; Bob Harstad in 1990 and Doug McDermott (three times last year). McDermott, who is coming off a 33-point game on Saturday and had 29 points last year against Arizona State, is seeking to become the first Bluejay player with consecutive games of 33 points or more since Harstad on Dec. 6 & 8, 1989.
Poll Position Creighton finished last season ranked 22nd in the final Associated Press poll, and made its 2013-14 debut in the top-25 poll last week when it was No. 23rd. This week, the team is ranked 20th. Along with No. 17 Iowa State and No. 23, this marks the first time in the history of the AP poll that Creighton, Iowa State and Iowa are all ranked at the same time. Creighton is 72-24 all-time when ranked in the AP poll, including a 6-1 mark as the 20th-ranked squad. Including this week’s poll, Creighton has been ranked 30 times in 61 weeks of AP polls under Greg McDermott, and ranked between 26th-to-28th in seven other polls. The 30 weeks in the top-25 under McDermott is more than any coach in Bluejay history. Most Weeks in AP Top 25 at CU, By Coach Greg McDermott, 2010-Pres. 30 (of 61) Dana Altman, 1994-2010 18 Tom Apke, 1974-81 5 Eddie Sutton, 1969-74 5
Ranked vs. Ranked? If No. 20 Creighton faces off against No. 25 Marquette on Sunday, it’ll mark a rare Bluejay game that involves two ranked teams. Creighton is 1-6 all-time against ranked teams, when ranked itself, but four of the seven such match-ups took place in the NCAA Tournament. Creighton’s only victory as a ranked team, against a ranked team, came on March 16, 1974. On that day, No. 19 Creighton defeated No. 16 Louisville in an NCAA Tournament consolation bracket contest.
Who’s The Man(ning)? The statistics of former Kansas star Danny Manning and current Creighton forward Doug McDermott are eerily similar to this point after 114 career games. McDermott is coming off a monstrous 33 point, 15 rebound game vs. Manning’s Tulsa team last Saturday. Both men were named league Newcomer of the Year as freshmen, and league Player of the Year as sophomores and juniors. Both men also won league Tournament MVP accolades as sophomores and juniors. Manning’s dad Ed was an assistant on the KU staff, while McDermott’s dad Greg is the Creighton head coach. Manning would cap his senior season with a national title and National Player of the Year honors from three organizations while becoming the first pick in the NBA Draft before a 15-year NBA career. He’s widely considered one of the top forwards in the last 25 years of college basketball.
Manning vs. McDermott, Through 114 Games Stat Manning McDermott Games 114 114 Starts 113 114 Field Goals 887 849 Field Goal Attempts 1,473 1,517 Field Goal Percentage .602 .560 Free Throws 351 439 Free Throw Attempts 477 538 Free Throw Percentage .736 .816 Rebounds 881 876 Rebounds/Game 7.73 7.7 Points 2,126 2,326 Points/Game 18.65 20.4 Postseason Wins 7 6
Put It In Neutral Creighton is 11-2 in the previous two seasons on neutral floors, including wins over BCS schools such as Arizona State, Cincinnati, Alabama, Wisconsin and Iowa, and back-to-back MVC Tournament titles. The Jays are now an impressive 28-10 away from home since the start of 2011-12. Creighton’s 13 wins away from home last year were surpassed only by Louisville (20), Gonzaga (17), Miami (15), Wichita State (15), Kansas (14), Florida (14), Stony Brook (14), New Mexico (14), Davidson (14), Memphis (14), Michigan (14) and Duke (14).
Program Connections There is one connection between the Arizona State and Creighton programs. Doug McDermott spent two months in the summer of 2011 as a teammate of Jahii Carson on the US Men’s U-19 National Team that traveled to Lithuania and Latvia. McDermott averaged 11.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game, while Carson averaged 2.1 points and 2.4 assists per game. Other players on that team included the NBA’s Jeremy Lamb and Tim Hardaway Jr., as well as current college standouts Keith Appling, Patric Young and Joe Jackson.
Road Warriors Thursday’s match-up between Creighton and Arizona State also features two of the nation’s best players in Doug McDermott and Jahii Carson. Part of what makes them great is that both players have done some of their best work away from home. Since the start of last season, McDermott has averaged 23.4 points per game in 20 road/neutral games (14 wins). In those contests, he’s scored at least 20 points 15 times and shot 52.6 percent from the field (161-306) and 48.1 percent (39-81) from three-point range. In 16 games away from home in his career, Carson has averaged 23.1 points per game on 53.4 percent shooting from the floor (140-262), including 11 games of 20 or more points.
Weekly Honor For McDermott Doug McDermott was named National Player of the Week by ESPN.com and BIG EAST Conference Player of the Week on Nov. 16th after averaging 25.7 points and 5.7 rebounds in three Creighton wins to start the season. McDermott made 55.8 percent from the field, 53.3 percent from three-point land, and 78.6 percent of his free throw attempts. McDermott then earned his second consecutive BIG EAST Player of the Week honor on Monday when he got the nod following a 33 point, 15 rebound showing in a 82-72 triumph vs. Tulsa. Including his seven MVC Newcomer of the Week honors in 2010-11, 13 MVC Player of the Week honors from 2011-13, and first BIG EAST Player of the Week accolade of 2013-14, McDermott has now won at least one conference weekly award from the MVC or BIG EAST in 22 of 51 weeks since enrolling at Creighton.
Quick Starts Key To Playing in Postseason Including this year, Creighton has started off 3-0 (or better) in 13 of the last 15 seasons. Each of Creighton’s last 14 3-0 starts have been culminated in a postseason tournament appearance at the end of the year. This season marks the third straight year Creighton has opened 4-0, something last done from 2002-03 to 2004-05. The only other time CU started 4-0 in three straight years had come in a five-year stretch from 1916-17 to 1920-21.
Wragge Bombs Away Ethan Wragge has attempted all 25 shots this season from three-point range, sinking an incredible 14 of them (56 percent). He was 7-for-11 from deep in CU’s 83-79 win at Saint Joseph’s on Nov. 16, the most treys by a Bluejay in a game since Booker Woodfox had seven (also at Saint Joseph’s) in 2008. Wragge ranks third in Creighton history with 238 career trifectas, and seventh with 43.1 percent marksmanship from downtown.
McDermott, For The Win Doug McDermott drained his first career game-winner in a Nov. 16 victory at Saint Joseph’s. With Creighton trailing by one and 6.9 seconds left, McDermott caught an inbounds pass, hit a fadeaway jumper, and was fouled. He converted the three-point play in CU’s eventual 83-79 win. Said McDermott after the game “I didn’t know how to celebrate…I’ve never hit one before.” McDermott is now 7-for-8 from the field and 17-for-20 from the line in the last minute of games in the past two seasons. Creighton had not won a game when trailing in the final minute of overtime since Feb. 21, 2012, when Josh Jones hit a game-winner to beat Evansville in the final 30 seconds of overtime. Creighton had also tied that same game as time expired on a Gregory Echenique tip-in to close regulation. Creighton last won a road game when trailing in the final minute on Jan. 7, 2011, at Southern Illinois, taking the lead for good with 36 seconds left on two Darryl Ashford free throws. Creighton last won a game away from home when trailing in the final five seconds on March 6, 2009, when Booker Woodfox hit a buzzer-beater to stun Wichita State in the MVC Tournament quarterfinals.
Big Deficits, Big Deal Creighton overcame a 13-point deficit to win at Saint Joseph’s on Nov. 16 before posting an 83-79 win. It was the 10th time in four seasons under Greg McDermott that the Jays have won a game its trailed by double-figures at some point, including six such comebacks away from home. On the other hand, Creighton is 71-4 under McDermott when putting together a double-digit lead, including 59 straight wins. Double-Digit Comebacks Under G. McDermott Deficit Opponent Date 17 at San Diego State 11/30/11 16 at Evansville 02/16/13 14 Evansville 02/21/12 13 at Saint Joseph’s 11/16/13 12 Saint Joseph’s 12/11/10 11 at Wichita State 12/31/11 11 Northern Iowa 01/10/12 11 vs. Alabama 03/16/12 10 UAB 11/14/12 10 vs. Drake 03/02/12
Just Like Viejas Arena? Creighton’s win at Saint Joseph’s had some similarities to its road win at San Diego State two years ago. In both games, Creighton faced an early double-digit deficit before cutting into the lead before half (17 at SDSU, 13 at SJU). In both games, Creighton got big nights from Ethan Wragge (19 points at SDSU, 21 at SJU). In both games, Creighton held on to a lead in the last 10 seconds. In both games, Creighton was playing its first true road game of the season, and in front of a sellout crowd known as one of the toughest atmospheres in college basketball.
@McDermottAlert Has You Covered Rather than clog up its other social media accounts with the many exploits of Doug McDermott, Creighton Athletics has created a Twitter account specific to him, that can be found at twitter.com/McDermottAlert. It contains links to dozens of national profiles and stats on the senior forward, and owns more than 1,300 followers.
Jays Sign A Pair Of Recruits A pair of high school basketball standouts have signed letters-of-intent to play at Creighton University. Leon Gilmore III and Ronnie Harrell will both be freshmen when they enroll in the fall of 2014 and have four years of eligibility. Gilmore is a 6’7” wing from Manvel, Texas, who attends Manvel High School and plays for coach Greg Devers. As a high school junior, he helped his team to a 30-6 record by averaging 13.7 points, 6.6 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 2.0 steals per game. Gilmore competes for the Houston Hoops AAU program. Harrell is a 6’7” wing from Denver (Colo.) East High School, where he plays for Rudy Carey. As a junior he averaged 13.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game, helping the Angels reach the state title game. On the AAU circuit, Harrell plays for Billups Elite, which is supported by his cousin, NBA veteran Chauncey Billups.
20-20-20-20 Vision Doug McDermott has opened his senior season with 20 points vs. Alcorn State, 37 points vs. UMKC, 20 points at Saint Joseph’s and 33 points vs. Tulsa. He’s the first Bluejay to start a season with four consecutive games of 20 or more points since Cyril Baptiste opened with four straight games in 1969-70. The last Creighton player with five straight games of 20 points or more to open the season was Bob Portman in 1968-69. McDermott is one of 11 players nationwide who has scored 20 or more in every one of his team’s games this season (through 11/25), as seen below: Games Name, School Next Game 7 Reger Dowell, Texas-Arlington 11/29 6 Jabari Parker, Duke 12/3 5 Jeremy Ingram, North Carolina Central 11/26 5 DJ Balentine, Evansville 11/26 5 Elijah Pittman, Marshall 11/26 5 Tre Bussey, Georgia Southern 11/26 5 Antoine Mason, Niagara 11/26 4 Doug McDermott, Creighton 11/28 4 Dylon Cormier, Loyola (Md.) 11/26 4 George Beamon, Manhattan 11/26 3 Roberto Nelson, Oregon State 11/26
Use The Four’s Doug McDermott converted a rare four-point play on Nov. 11 vs. UMKC, sinking a three-point shy while being fouled before making the subsequent free throw. In Greg McDermott’s four-year tenure at Creighton, the only previous players with a four-point play had been Kaleb Korver and Ethan Wragge, who had done it once each.
Martelli On McDermott Even before Doug McDermott hit a three-point play to beat Saint Joseph’s, Hawks coach Phil Martelli was overwhelmingly complimentary on the skills of Doug McDermott. Here’s what he had to say about McDermott prior to the game: “The country is gaga over these freshmen but McDermott’s the best player in the country. Tell me who does more for their team. They can give the awards at the end of the year to the freshmen because of the media blitz, but that kid is a magnificent, magnificent player.”
Too Close For Comfort? The Nov. 16 win at Saint Joseph’s was Creighton’s first close game this season, and just the sixth in the 40 games dating to the start of last season decided by four points or less. Last year, only one Creighton game had a lead change in the final five minutes (a Feb. 13 loss at UNI). Since the start of 2011-12, Creighton is 11-4 in games decided by six points or less and 6-2 in games that went to overtime or had a lead change in the final five minutes of regulation.
NBA Representation Creighton has a pair of NBA players once again this year, as Kyle Korver (Atlanta Hawks) and Anthony Tolliver (Charlotte Bobcats) are in the league. Including 2013-14, Creighton has now had an NBA player in 30 of the last 31 years, and 47-of-50 seasons since 1964-65. Korver carries an 87-game streak with a 3-point basket into Tuesday’s game (Nov. 26), having obliterated the Hawks franchise mark of 42 last season. In NBA history, it is the second-longest ever, trailing only Dana Barros (89). He ranks 26th in NBA history with 1,360 career three-pointers and is 12th in league history with his 42.1 percent marksmanship from three-point range. The only other player in league history with at least 1,200 treys and 41.2 percent accuracy is Steve Nash.
Making An Entrance Iowa Western CC transfer Devin Brooks has shown moments of brilliance in his first four appearances in a Creighton uniform. In the regular-season opener vs. Alcorn State, Brooks had 15 points, six rebounds and five assists in 15 minutes, sinking 3-of-4 field goals. Brooks had nine rebounds, five assists and four points in 16 minutes vs. UMKC. In his first road contest, Brooks had 16 points, four rebounds, three assists and a game-saving steal in the final seconds at Saint Joseph’s. His 16 points were the most by a Bluejay in his road debut since Wayne Runnels had 16 points at Dayton in 2009. Brooks was the first Creighton player with at least 15 points, six rebounds and five assists in a season-opener since Benoit Benjamin had 25 points, 17 rebounds and six assists (and six blocks) vs. Nebraska-Kearney on Nov. 24, 1984. Brooks was also the first Bluejay with multiple games of 15 points or more within his first three contests since Edward St. Fleur in 1995-96.
Chasing 3,000 In Major League Baseball, producing 3,000 career hits is something that’s been done by just 24 Hall of Famers in history. Doug McDermott has a chance to become just the eighth Division I male in NCAA history to score 3,000 or more points if he can stay healthy and average roughly 23 points per game this season. To help put McDermott’s career in perspective, the chart on page six shows how many points McDermott owns and which famous ballplayer that is most comparable to. This season alone, McDermott has surpassed legends like Joe DiMaggio, Mike Schmidt, Eddie Mathews, Kirby Puckett and Willie Stargell.
Crowd Control Creighton’s sellout crowd of 17,740 on Nov. 8 vs. Alcorn State was its largest ever for a home-opener. It was also Creighton’s largest home crowd for any November game, and the ninth-largest home crowd in program history.
Hottest Ticket in Town Creighton Basketball has proven to be a hot ticket in recent years, but the anticipation for this season has taken those levels up a notch. Creighton sold more than 15,100 season tickets for the first time, a figure that doesn’t factor in students. Last year’s record was 13,739. Creighton has also sold more than 2,100 all-session tickets for the BIG EAST Tournament already, the most by any league school since Connecticut in 2006. When single-game tickets went on sale on Oct. 29, seven games sold out within an hour, including less than 20 minutes for games vs. Marquette, Georgetown, Nebraska, Seton Hall and Chicago State.
Backcourt In Bunches The three men who play nearly all of Creighton’s minutes at point guard have off to strong starts this season, as Austin Chatman, Devin Brooks and Grant Gibbs rank as three of the BIG EAST’s 14 men with 3.5 or more assists per game this year. Chatman (25/4), Gibbs (23/5) and Brooks (14/8) owned top-14 in assist/turnover ratios in the league, as well, through Sunday. The trio has combined for 266 minutes, 98 points, 49 rebounds and 62 assists against just 17 turnovers this season.
Nation’s Best Offense? You can make a case that Creighton boasted the nation’s best offensive production last year. Creighton was second in the country in field goal percentage (50.1) and three-point percentage (41.4), third in two-point field goal percentage (55.7), ninth in free-throw percentage (75.9) and 10th in three-pointers per game (8.5). Below is where Creighton ranked nationally in the first three years of the Greg McDermott tenure (does not include 2013-14): Category Stat National Rank FG Percentage .487 1st 3FG Percentage .401 2nd Assists 1,793 4th Assists/Game 16.30 5th 3FG Made 874 6th Assist/Turnover Ratio 1.34 10th FG Made 2,852 13th Wins 80 T-16th Winning Pct. .727 26th
Ask The Experts ESPN had 20 experts predict the 2013-14 season. Nine of them (Jay Bilas, Adrian Branch, Elena Bergeron, Dan Dakich, Jimmy Dykes, Myron Medcalf, Digger Phelps, Miles Simon and Dick Vitale) predicted Doug McDermott would be National Player of the Year. CBS Sports asked six experts to predict the 2013-14 season. Two of them (Doug Gottlieb and Jon Rothstein) picked McDermott would be National Player of the Year. Sports Illustrated had four experts predict the 2014-14 season. Two of them (Seth Davis and Luke Winn) picked McDermott would be National Player of the Year. All told, McDermott collected 13 votes, Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart 10 votes, Kansas’ Andrew Wiggins three votes, Kentucky’s Julius Randle three votes and Louisville’s Russ Smith one vote.
Record Watch With seven field goals on Nov. 8, Doug McDermott took over sole possession of first place on Creighton’s all-time field goals made list. He now owns 849 in his career. He had entered the season tied with Chad Gallagher (1987-91) for the school-record with 811. McDermott also made four free throws vs. Alcorn State, passing MLB Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Gibson for third in CU history, and now owns 439.
November Reign Creighton is a perfect 44-0 all-time in regular-season home games that take place on or before Nov. 26th. Creighton has won 45 of its 46 regular-season November home games since 1990, falling only to Boise State last season. Overall, Creighton is 59-12 in regular-season November games at all sites since the start of the 1998-99 campaign. Creighton has also won 47 of its last 48 non-conference home games against unranked foes since falling to Drexel on Feb. 17, 2007.
Preseason Acclaim Doug McDermott has garnered a ton of preseason hype you’d expect from a returning two-time consensus First Team All-American. In addition to being named the Preseason BIG EAST Player of the Year, McDermott has also been named a Preseason First Team All-American by the Associated Press, USA Today, Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, CBSSports.com, NBCSports.com and Sporting News. McDermott is also one of 30 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award, one of 15 men named to the Oscar Robertson Trophy Watch List, and one of 50 players on the preseason watch list for the John R. Wooden Award.
Going For 20, Again Creighton has won 20 or more games in 14 of the last 15 seasons, a feat that puts the Jays among an exclusive group, nationally. Just five schools nationally have had 20 or more wins each of the last 15 years: Duke, Florida, Gonzaga, Kansas and Syracuse. Creighton is one of four schools with 20 or more wins in exactly 14 of the past 15 years. That list consists of Creighton, Kent State, Kentucky and Utah State. That’s better than traditional powers Arizona, Connecticut and Memphis (13 each) and also ahead of Michigan State, Pittsburgh and Wisconsin (12 each).
10 Conference Wins x 17 Last season’s Creighton team won 10 or more league games for a 17th consecutive season. On a national basis, the only other current school with at least 17 straight years of 10 or more league wins is Kansas (19). Each of the last 17 seasons has seen the team finish fourth place or better in the league standings as well, though all of those took place in the Missouri Valley Conference.
Postseason x 16 Creighton has made the postseason in 16 consecutive seasons. The only eight schools to make the postseason in each of the last 16 years are Creighton, Duke, Florida, Gonzaga, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan State and Syracuse.
Postseason Win Streak Thanks to an NCAA Tournament win over Cincinnati last spring, the Creighton men’s basketball team has now won a postseason game in a school-record six straight seasons. The previous mark was three in a row from 1962-64. The following five programs are the only ones that have won a postseason game in six straight seasons, including 2012-13: Creighton, Kansas, North Carolina, Purdue and Syracuse.
Who Are These Guys? Creighton returns four starters (Austin Chatman, Grant Gibbs, Jahenns Manigat and Doug McDermott) from last year’s team that finished 28-8. Creighton’s roster contains players who made 144 starts a year ago, and own a combined 331 career starts. Returning Returning Starts Final Year Starters From Previous Year W-L 2013-14 4 144 ? ? ? 2012-13 4 140 28-8 2011-12 3 101 29-6 2010-11 4 123 23-16 2009-10 3 106 18-16 2008-09 3 83 27-8 2007-08 1 44 22-11 2006-07 4 120 22-11 2005-06 4 134 20-10 2004-05 2 58 23-11 2003-04 3 101 20-9 2002-03 5 159 29-5 2001-02 2 65 23-9 2000-01 3 90 24-8 1999-00 3 84 23-10 1998-99 3 84 22-9 1997-98 4 72 18-10 1996-97 4 126 15-15 1995-96 4 100 14-15 1994-95 2 52 7-19 1993-94 3 73 7-22 1992-93 2 64 8-18 1991-92 2 51 9-19 1990-91 4 132 24-8 1989-90 4 127 21-12 1988-89 4 123 20-11 1987-88 3 83 16-16 1986-87 2 65 9-19 1985-86 1 48 12-16 1984-85 4 124 20-12 1983-84 3 72 17-14 1982-83 3 77 8-19 1981-82 2 78 7-20 1980-81 4 112 21-9
Preseason BIG EAST Poll Creighton was picked to finish third in its first season as BIG EAST Conference members according to a preseason poll of league coaches. Marquette was picked first with 74 points and five first-place votes, while Georgetown (70, 2) was also selected ahead of the Bluejays (61, 1). Rounding out the top half were Villanova (58) and St. John’s (56, 2). Creighton forward Doug McDermott was named preseason BIG EAST Conference Player of the Year by the coaches.
I Know What You Did Last Summer Senior forward Doug McDermott served as a captain for Team USA last summer at the World University Games in Kazan, Russia. Playing under the direction of coaches Bob McKillop (Davidson), John Beilein (Michigan) and Frank Martin (South Carolina), McDermott led the team in scoring (14.1 ppg.), field goals (39), three-pointers (18), free throws (17), free-throw percentage (.895) and minutes (23.8) as the team went 6-2 in eight games. On his way back from Russia, McDermott was invited to the USA Basketball Men’s National Team Mini-Camp along with 28 of the NBA’s rising stars and fellow collegian Marcus Smart (Oklahoma State), where he received rave reviews.
Full House Last year’s Creighton team ranked sixth nationally in average home attendance, averaging 17,155 fans per game. It’s the seventh straight season that CU has been among the nation’s top 25 in average home attendance, and set an MVC average home attendance record. The figure ranked ahead of 14 NBA teams (76ers, Rockets, Grizzlies, Wizards, Timberwolves, Cavaliers, Suns, Bobcats, Pacers, Hawks, Bucks, Pistons, Pelicans, Kings). Creighton also ranked sixth nationally in men’s soccer attendance and 10th in baseball attendance, the nation’s only school in the top-10 of those three sports. This year’s Creighton team is averaging 17,559 through three home dates. 2012-13 Attendance Leaders Rk. School Average 1. Kentucky 23,099 2. Syracuse 22,439 3. Louisville 21,571 4. North Carolina 19,350 5. Indiana 17,412 6. Creighton 17,155 7. Wisconsin 16,843 8. Tennessee 16,635 9. Ohio State 16,524 10. Kansas 16,438
Highest Average Attendance, Creighton History Avg. Att. School Year 17,559 Creighton 2013-14 17,155 Creighton 2012-13 16,665 Creighton 2011-12 15,930 Creighton 2008-09 15,909 Creighton 2006-07
Army of Iowans Every Creighton team since 1988-89 has had at least one Iowa native, and this season is no exception. Creighton has five players from Iowa on this season’s team, continuing a long trend of relying on some of the Hawkeye State’s top preps. CU’s Iowans this season includes seniors Grant Gibbs (Marion) and Doug McDermott (Ames), junior Will Artino (Waukee), sophomore Alex Olsen (Council Bluffs) and freshman John Burns (Algona). Other past notable Iowans include Kyle Korver (Pella), Ryan Sears (Ankeny), Brody Deren (Harlan), Tyler McKinney (Urbandale) and Nate Funk (Sioux City). Creighton has played at least one Iowa native in 625 straight games. That streak dates to a Feb. 5, 1994 win against Wichita State.
Long-Distance Streak Alive Creighton has made at least one three-pointer in 649 straight games since a 59-53 loss at Illinois State on Feb. 20, 1993.
CenturyLink Center Omaha Success Creighton has played 173 regular and postseason contests at CenturyLink Center Omaha all-time in 11 seasons at the facility. The Bluejays own an 148-25 (.855) record all-time at the facility, and have never lost there on a Thursday (7-0) or Friday (7-0). Creighton has outscored its opponents 13,069-11,100 in games at CenturyLink Center Omaha, an average margin of 11.4 points per game. Creighton has led wire-to-wire 41 different times, including five times last season.
Familiar Fives Creighton utilized the same starting line-up all season long in 2012-13, as Gregory Echenique, Doug McDermott, Grant Gibbs, Jahenns Manigat and Austin Chatman started all 36 games. All but Echenique return in 2013-14. Manigat and Gibbs have each started every game since the start of the 2011-12 season, while McDermott has started every game since the start of the 2010-11 season.
Big Margin Leads To Big Things Creighton’s 107-61 win on Nov. 8 vs. Alcorn State was its highest point total in a season-opener ever, one point more than the 2002-03 team that opened with a 106-50 win over Texas-Arlington. The 2002-03 team went on to be 29-5. Eight of Creighton’s 18 all-time NCAA Tournament teams have scored 90 or more points in their season-opener. Here’s a look at Creighton’s last six teams to score 90 or more in a season-opener. Final Post- Score Opponent Date W-L Season 107-61 Alcorn State 11/08/13 ? ? ? ? ? 97-65 N. Carolina A&T 11/11/11 29-6 NCAA 106-50 Texas-Arlington 11/17/02 29-5 NCAA 96-50 Western Illinois 11/20/00 24-8 NCAA 93-48 Towson State 11/14/98 22-9 NCAA 93-47 UT-San Antonio 11/30/90 24-8 NCAA
Team of the Millennium? Below is the records for each current BIG EAST school over the last five, 10 and 15 seasons, ranked by overall wins. The three newcomers to the league, Butler, Creighton and Xavier, are at the top of nearly each category. All numbers below are ENTERING 2013-14. Most Wins - Last 15 Years Team W L Pct. Butler 366 136 .729 Xavier 355 145 .710 Creighton 353 147 .706 Marquette 326 165 .664 Georgetown 319 169 .654 Villanova 316 181 .636 Seton Hall 248 217 .533 St. John’s 246 226 .521 Providence 240 225 .516 DePaul 197 265 .426
Most Wins - Last 10 Years Team W L Pct. Butler 244 98 .713 Xavier 236 102 .698 Creighton 232 106 .686 Marquette 229 109 .678 Villanova 223 115 .660 Georgetown 222 104 .681 Seton Hall 166 164 .532 Providence 159 152 .511 St. John’s 138 169 .450 DePaul 132 180 .423
Most Wins - Last 5 Years Team W L Pct. Butler 136 45 .751 Creighton 125 54 .698 Marquette 122 54 .693 Xavier 117 52 .692 Georgetown 109 53 .673 Villanova 109 61 .641 Seton Hall 85 77 .525 St. John’s 84 81 .509 Providence 80 82 .494 DePaul 47 111 .297
Everybody’s All-American Doug McDermott hauled in All-America honors on a regular basis last year. He was named a First Team All-American by the Associated Press, NABC, USBWA, Basketball Times, CBSSports.com and ESPN.com, and a second-team selection by The Sporting News. He was also named to the 10-man John R. Wooden Award All-America team. Prior to McDermott, the only other player honored by the USBWA with All-America status had been second-team selection Kyle Korver in 2003, and the only prior NABC selections from Creighton had been second-teamer Paul Silas (1964) and third-team selections Benoit Benjamin (1985) and Korver (2003).
Oscar, Bird, Doug Doug McDermott set a Creighton (and MVC) record for points by a freshman with 581 in 2010-11. As a sophomore McDermott had 801 points, joining Oscar Robertson and Larry Bird as the only sophomores in MVC history with at least 800 points in a season. Last year McDermott became the first player in MVC history to reach 2,000 career points as a junior, and joined Robertson and Bird as the only players in league history to reach 2,000 points in less than three seasons of work. Below is a list of the most prolific scorers in MVC history, as well as the top single-season scorers in Creighton history (all classes): Top Scorers, MVC History (All Years) Pts. Name, School Years 1125 Hersey Hawkins, Bradley 1987-88 1011 Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati 1959-60 984 Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati 1957-58 978 Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati 1958-59 973 Larry Bird, Indiana State 1978-79 959 Larry Bird, Indiana State 1977-78 918 Larry Bird, Indiana State 1976-77 844 Xavier McDaniel, Wichita State 1984-85 834 Doug McDermott, Creighton 2012-13 815 Lewis Lloyd, Drake 1979-80 801 Doug McDermott, Creighton 2011-12
Top Sophomore Scorers, MVC History Pts. Name, School Years 984 Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati 1957-58 918 Larry Bird, Indiana State 1976-77 801 Doug McDermott, Creighton 2011-12 680 Mitchell Anderson, Bradley 1979-80
Top Junior Scorers, MVC History Pts. Name, School Years 978 Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati 1958-59 959 Larry Bird, Indiana State 1977-78 834 Doug McDermott, Creighton 2012-13 815 Lewis Lloyd, Drake 1979-80
Top Scorers, Creighton Single-Season History Pts. Name (Class) Year 834 Doug McDermott (Jr.) 2012-13 801 Doug McDermott (So.) 2011-12 738 Bob Portman (Jr.) 1967-68 734 Bob Harstad (Jr.) 1989-90
Most Career Points, Active Seniors Source: Creighton Sports Info/STATS Inc. (11/25) Rk. Pts. Name, School Next Game 1. 2,326 Doug McDermott, Creighton 11/29 2. 1,799 Travis Bader, Oakland 11/26
Scoring In Numbers Doug McDermott owned 834 points in 36 games last year, an average of 23.2 per contest that ranked him second nationally in scoring. McDermott’s 23.2 points per game ranked fourth-most in CU single-season history and were the most since Bob Portman averaged 26.2 points per game in 1968-69. Portman, who finished fifth nationally in scoring in 1967-68 (29.5 ppg.), was the only previous Bluejay to ever rank in the top-10 of the year-end scoring leaders, before McDermott did it each of the past two seasons (3rd in 2011-12, 2nd last year). McDermott’s 23.2 points per game were the most by a MVC player since Bradley’s Curtis Stuckey (25.1 ppg.) in 1990-91.
Father/Son Duos According to the website CollegeHoopedia.com, Doug McDermott is just the sixth man in NCAA history to be named conference player of the year while playing for his father. Joining them on that elite list are Dick/Mark Acres (Oral Roberts), Dick/Tony Bennett (UW Green Bay), Homer/Bryce Drew (Valparaiso), Press/Pete Maravich (LSU) and Clifford/C.J. Reed (Bethune-Cookman). Below is a list compiled by ESPN.com of most points scored by a guy playing for his dad: Name, School Points Father Pete Maravich,LSU 3,667 Press Allan Houston, Tennessee 2,801 Wade Doug McDermott, Creighton 2,326 Greg Tony Bennett, UWGB 2,285 Dick Bryce Drew, Valparaiso 2,142 Homer
Repeat All-American Doug McDermott joined some elite company by being named a First Team All-American by the USBWA, Associated Press and the NABC for a second consecutive season last spring. He is the 70th player to repeat the honor from the USBWA, 55th from the NABC, and 51st in the history of the Associated Press. If McDermott is named First Team All-American by the AP this year, he’ll become the first three-time first team selection since Patrick Ewing and Wayman Tisdale from 1983-85.
Not Half Bad Doug McDermott’s highest scoring half of his career has been 31 points, done as a sophomore in the second half at Bradley when he scored a career-best 44 points. McDermott has scored 15 points or more in a half 47 times during his career, and Creighton is 40-2 in those contests (five times he’s scored 15 or more in both halves). McDermott owns 10 halves in his career with 20 or more points, and just six scoreless halves.
The 800 Club Creighton’s Doug McDermott led the nation with 834 points last season after owning a league-high (and second-most nationally) 801 as a sophomore. McDermott joined Oscar Robertson and Larry Bird as the third player in MVC history with multiple 800-point seasons. Nationwide, McDermott was the first player with consecutive seasons of 800 points or more since Stephen Curry (Davidson) and Lester Hudson (Tennessee-Martin) in both 2007-08 and 2008-09.
Supporting Cast Doug McDermott was Creighton’s only player to average in double-figures last year, but he had lots of support to help lead the Jays to 28 wins. Creighton was 11-0 when Ethan Wragge (7.7 ppg.) scored in double-figures last year. CU is 31-1 under Greg McDermott (including 19 straight wins) when Wragge shoots 50 percent from three-point range. Creighton was 8-1 when Austin Chatman (7.4 ppg.) scored in double-figures last year. Creighton was 6-2 when Jahenns Manigat (5.9 ppg.) scored in double-figures last year. CU is now 20-1 all-time when Manigat makes three or more 3-pointers, including 18 straight wins, and the Jays are 22-2 (with 20 straight wins) when Manigat shoots better than 50 percent from 3-point range. Creighton is 14-0 all-time when Avery Dingman makes multiple three-pointers. Creighton has won its last 30 games when Will Artino (64.6 percent last year) has missed a field goal attempt, and is 35-1 all-time when it happens.
Rare Bird According to research from STATS Inc., only two men since 1996-97 have compiled at least 2,100 points, 850 rebounds and 150 three-pointers in their career. That list consists of Creighton senior Doug McDermott and former Duke national champion Kyle Singler. Name, School PTS REB 3FG Kyle Singler, Duke 2,392 1,015 267 Doug McDermott, Creighton 2,326 876 187
His Own Game of H-O-R-S-E Doug McDermott led the nation in 2011-12 with 307 field goals made, and his 284 buckets last year once again led the nation. Prior to McDermott, no player had led the country in field goals made in back-to-back seasons since at least 1995-96. One area that makes McDermott so unique is his ability to use his off (left) hand, and to use the backboard, as seen below: Year FG Backboard Left-Hand 2010-11 220 64 28 2011-12 307 174 56 2012-13 284 132 26 2013-14 38 16 2 Totals 849 386 112
What A Start! Greg McDermott is 84-30 on the Creighton sideline early in his fourth year at the helm. The 84 wins are already the most in Creighton history in the first four seasons. Most Wins at CU, First Four Seasons Coach Years W-L After 4 Yrs Greg McDermott 2010-Pres. 84-30 so far Tom Apke 1974-78 79-30 Eddie Sutton 1969-73 59-43 Tony Barone 1985-89 57-62 Red McManus 1959-63 56-46 Dana Altman 1994-98 54-59 Thomas E. Mills 1916-20 53-6 Willis Reed 1981-85 52-65 A.A. Schabinger 1922-26 50-18
Walk-On Earns Rare Start It’s not often that a team starts a walk-on, but Doug McDermott isn’t your ordinary walk-on, either. McDermott’s assignment vs. Alcorn State made him the first Creighton player to start while owning walk-on status since Nick Bahe on Nov. 18, 2006.
Who Will Start? Creighton utilized the same starting five in every game last season, and four of their five starters had streaks of 71 or more straight starts by year’s end. Creighton was one of two teams to start the same starting five in every game last season, joining Stephen F. Austin. CU’s starting five played together as a group for 424 minutes last season, during which time its outscored the opposition by 129 points. The four returning starters were +52 in 110 minutes with Ethan Wragge last year, and +34 in 44 minutes with Will Artino a year ago. Consecutive Starts, Creighton (Active) Doug McDermott 114 Jahenns Manigat 90 Grant Gibbs 75 Austin Chatman 40 Will Artino 4
Rasmussen Named to MBB Committee Creighton Athletic Director Bruce Rasmussen began a five-year term on the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee on September 1st. He is the only newcomer to the committee for the 2013-14 academic year, replacing last year’s chair, Mike Bobinski.
Championship Duo, Men & Women Creighton was one of seven schools that won a regular-season conference title in both men’s and women’s basketball last year. That elite group consists of Montana (Big Sky), Akron (Mid-American), Texas Southern (Southwestern Athletic), South Dakota State (Summit), Middle Tennessee (Sun Belt), Gonzaga (West Coast) and Creighton (Missouri Valley).
Pizza Pie, Piled High = Wins Thanks to a promotion with Omaha-based Godfather’s Pizza, Creighton season ticket-holders can get a free mini pizza any time the Jays score 75 points at home. History has proven that when the team earns the fans pizza, it often leads to a victory as well. The first three years of CenturyLink Center Omaha (2003-06), Creighton needed 70 points to earn its fans free pizza, and the Jays went 27-3 when reaching that threshold, closing out that run with 12 straight wins. Since upping the standard to 75 points prior to the 2006-07 campaign, Creighton is a perfect 70-0 when scoring 75 points or more at CenturyLink Center Omaha. In other words, Creighton is a perfect 82-0 in CenturyLink Center Omaha since Feb. 6, 2005 when scoring enough points to earn its fans some free pizza.
Good As Gold Since Greg McDermott took over three years ago, Creighton is averaging 79.03 points per home game (4,584 points in 58 home games). That’s a vital number since Creighton is 93-0 at home (66-0 at CenturyLink Center Omaha) when scoring 78 points or more and 75-0 at home (52-0 at CenturyLink Center Omaha) when scoring 80 points or more at home dating to a 92-83 loss to Southern Illinois on Feb. 19, 2000.
Last Season Recap Creighton went 28-8 and reached the third round of the MVC Tournament last season. Creighton was ranked in the Associated Press top-25 in 16-of-20 weeks and finished 22nd in the year-end poll. Doug McDermott ranked second nationally in scoring (23.2), breaking his own school-record with 834 points. He repeated as a consensus First Team All-American while also sweeping MVC Player of the Year and MVC Tournament MVP honors for a second straight winter. Gregory Echenique (9.7 ppg., 6.6 rpg.) and Grant Gibbs (8.5 ppg., 5.8 apg.) were named Honorable-Mention All-Valley, while Ethan Wragge nabbed Sixth Man of the Year accolades. The Jays ranked second nationally in field goal percentage (.501) and three-point percentage (.414), fourth in assists (16.9), sixth in home attendance (17,155) and ninth in free throw percentage (.759). Creighton defeated Wichita State in the regular-season finale to claim the outright MVC title before winning its league-record 12th Valley Tournament title to clinch an NCAA bid with another win over the Shockers. At the NCAA’s, Creighton topped Cincinnati 67-63 before falling to No. 6 Duke in the third round.
Shuttle Service Provided Again Chief Bus will provide complimentary shuttle service from the Creighton University campus to CenturyLink Center Omaha for all men’s basketball home games this season. The service is available to all fans, not just Creighton students. The shuttle will start 75 minutes before tip-off and shuttles will continue to operate the route during the game. The three designated stops for pick-up around the CU campus are: 24th & California (nearside/southbound); 20th & Cass (nearside/eastbound) and at Billy Blues Alumni Grill (outside the Mike & Josie Harper Center in the turnaround which is on the east side of the building). The shuttle will then go eastbound on Capitol Avenue and then go north up 10th Street for drop-off at the CenturyLink Center Omaha convention center entrance. The route is designed for each shuttle driver to make a roundtrip every 15 minutes. Following the game’s conclusion, the shuttle will start at the CenturyLink Center Omaha convention center entrance on 10th Street and loop the original route with the first of three stops at 24th & California Streets.
Ticket Information Single-game tickets for the 2013-14 season went on sale on October 29th at 10 am. Fans can purchase single-game tickets at CenturyLink Center Omaha Box Office, Ryan Athletic Center, all Ticketmaster locations (Baker’s, Younkers), Ticketmaster online at http://www.ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster and charging by phone at (800) 745-3000. Only upper bowl seats will be available for any game. For more information, call the Creighton Ticket Office at (402) 280-JAYS.
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