2013-14 Creighton Men’s Basketball Game #27 • Seton Hall at #11/12 Creighton • Sunday, Feb. 23, 2014 • 4:02 pm Seton Hall Pirates at #11/12 Creighton Bluejays CenturyLink Center Omaha (17,390) • Omaha, Neb. Radio: KOZN 1620 AM, www.1620thezone.com TV: FOX Sports Midwest Series History: Seton Hall leads, 6-2 Last Meeting: Creighton 79, Seton Hall 66 on 1/4/14 in Newark, N.J.
Next Game Winners of seven of its last eight, #11/12 Creighton (22-4, 12-2 BIG EAST) enters the home stretch of its conference schedule with a Sunday afternoon home game vs. Seton Hall (14-12, 5-8 BIG EAST). Tip-off at CenturyLink Center Omaha (17,390) in Omaha, Neb., is set for 4:02 pm.
Radio Broadcast Information KOZN (1620 The Zone) will broadcast all Creighton men’s basketball games during the 2013-14 season. John Bishop and Nick Bahe will call the action. The broadcast is also webcast live at 1620thezone.com. The pregame show “Bluejay Shootaround”, hosted by Josh Peterson and former Bluejay Josh Dotzler, begins at 2 p.m. Following the game, Tim Krueger and Heath Gunderson will host “Overtime” for approximately one hour, while also taking calls from listeners.
Broadcast Information Sunday’s game will be broadcast on FOX Sports Midwest (Nebraska only), with Jason Benetti and Greg Kelser on the call. In addition to Fox Sports Midwest in Nebraska, Sunday’s game also airs live on Fox Sports Arizona, Fox Sports Detroit, Fox Sports North, Fox Sports Oklahoma, Fox Sports South (Kentucky only), Fox Sports Southwest, Fox Sports West, Fox Sports Wisconsin, Sports Time Ohio, Sportsouth, Sun Sports, MSG Network, Root Sports (Northwest, Pittsburgh and Rocky Mountain Regions), Cox Sports Northeast, WPWR MyNet (Chicago), WDCA MyNet (Washington) and WTXF Fox (Philadelphia). The game will also air on DirecTV channel 680 (680-1 in HD), Dish Network channel 445 (HD 9515) and AT&T U-Verse channel 692 (HD 1692).
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.
McDermott Bobble Heads on Sunday Early-arriving fans arriving to CenturyLink Center Omaha for Sunday’s game vs. Seton Hall could end up with a one-of-a-kind collectable. A limited number of Doug McDermott bobble heads will be given to fans upon arrival at three CenturyLink Center Omaha entrances – the main entrance off of 10th Street, the attached-garage entrance adjacent to the Mutual of Omaha display and the Lot A entrance – until the supply is exhausted. Tip-off is set for 4 pm. Doors open at 2:30 pm.
Scouting #11/12 Creighton Creighton owns a 22-4 record, including double-digit wins over top-65 RPI teams in Nebraska, Arizona State, Cal, Xavier, Butler, Georgetown and Villanova (twice). The Bluejays are in first place in their first BIG EAST campaign with a 12-2 league mark, one-half game ahead of No. 9 Villanova. The Bluejays own wins by 28 and 21 points over the Wildcats, and victories over preseason league favorite Marquette by 18 and 15, as well. Seven-time BIG EAST Player of the Week Doug McDermott (25.8 ppg., 7.1 rpg., 44.8 3FG%) 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, was named Preseason BIG EAST Player of the Year, has scored 19 or more points in all but two games this year, and owns nine games of 30 or more points. He’s also hit game-winning shots in two of CU’s last five wins, and three victories overall this year. Austin Chatman (7.6 ppg., 3.4 rpg., 4.3 apg.) and Jahenns Manigat (7.7 ppg., 44.4 3FG%) help man the Bluejay backcourt and have combined for 193 assists against just 63 turnovers this year. Grant Gibbs (6.6 ppg., 4.4 apg., 3.8 rpg.) suffered a dislocated kneecap on Jan. 7 at DePaul, but returned to the line-up one month later and has averaged 8.0 points, 4.8 rebounds and 4.8 assists in five games since then. Helping to replace Gregory Echenique at the “5” spot have been the duo of Ethan Wragge (11.4 ppg., 49.4 3FG%) and Will Artino (6.3 ppg., 68.0 FG%). Wragge ranks in the top-seven nationally in three-point percentage and three-pointers made per game, while Artino had his first career double-double on Feb. 13 at Butler.
Scouting Seton Hall Seton Hall is 14-12 on the season, including a 5-8 mark in BIG EAST action. Thie Pirates own a 4-4 road record this season, including victories at Xavier, Providence, Rutgers and Georgetown. Senior swingman Fuquan Edwin led the Pirates in scoring last year and is first again this season at 14.5 points per contest. He also owns a league-high 64 steals. Texas transfer Sterling Gibbs has made an immediate impact, scoring 14.3 per game while also dishing a club-best 111 assists. Brian Oliver leads the team with 72 three-point baskets and is third on the team with 11.6 points per game. As a team, Seton Hall averages 74.2 points per game while allowing 70.7 per contest. The Pirates shoot 45.8 percent from the field, 36.6 percent from three-point land and 72.5 percent at the line.
The Coaches Greg McDermott (Northern Iowa, 1988) is in the midst of his fourth season as head coach at Creighton. He led CU to a 28-8 mark last year, and is now 102-34 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 382-220 in his 20th season and is 251-165 in his 13th Division I campaign. McDermott is assisted by Darian DeVries, Steve Lutz and Patrick Sellers. Kevin Willard (Pittsburgh, 1997) owns a 63-61 record in his fourth season at Seton Hall, which moves his career mark to 108-110 in seven years. He came to Seton Hall after a three-year stint as Iona head coach. Willard is assisted by Shaheen Holloway, Fred Hill and Oliver Antigua.
The Series With Seton Hall Seton Hall leads the all-time series with Creighton, 6-2, though the teams have never played in Omaha. Before Creighton’s win last month, the teams had met just once in the last 62 years, a 1991 NCAA Tournament contest in Salt Lake City won by the Pirates. Greg McDermott is 1-0 against Seton Hall and coach Kevin Willard. Willard is 1-1 all-time against Creighton, leading his 2009-10 Iona team to a 63-55 win over the Bluejays at the Old Spice Classic near Orlando, Fla.
Milestone Watch -Doug McDermott (2,888 points) is 26 points away from tying Alfredrick Hughes (2,914) for 10th on the NCAA’s all-time scoring list. • Austin Chatman (329 assists) is three helpers shy of 332 assists, which could move him into a tie for 10th in Creighton history. -Ethan Wragge is four rebounds shy of 400 in his career. -Creighton can set a CenturyLink Center Omaha record with its 17th straight home win.
Familiar Faces When Creighton hosts Seton Hall this weekend, Bluejay guard Devin Brooks will recognize a familiar face on the Seton Hall sideline. Seton Hall assistant coach Oliver Antigua coached Brooks in high school at St. Raymond’s in the Bronx. One other face that Creighton fans might recognize is that of Seton Hall big man Eugene Teague who began his college career (as Gene Teague) by playing in 48 games at Creighton’s former MVC rival Southern Illinois from 2009-11. As a Saluki, Teague averaged 10.3 points and 5.3 rebounds in three meetings against the Bluejays, all Creighton wins. He missed the first meeting this season due to injury.
#DougMcD3K Doug McDermott continues his chase to become the eighth man in NCAA Division I history to reach 3,000 career points. He enters Sunday’s game just 112 points shy and has four BIG EAST games, at least one BIG EAST Tournament game, and likely at least one postseason game to go, as well. It’s worth noting that McDermott has scored 19 points or more in 24-of-26 games this season, and has accumulated 115 points over the course of his last four games.
Top Scorers, Nationally Doug McDermott enters Sunday’s game ranked first nationally in scoring at 25.8 points per game after passing Niagara’s Antoine Mason, son of former NBA big man Anthony Mason Jr. Mason, coincidentally, opened his season vs. Seton Hall and had 34 points against the Pirates. McDermott has had 25 or more points in each of his last six games, an incredible streak even by the lofty expectations bestowed on him. McDermott ranked third nationally as a sophomore (22.9 ppg.) before moving up to second place as a junior (23.2 ppg.). Below is a list of the nation’s five top scorers: Rank Name, School PPG Next Game 1. Doug McDermott, Creighton 25.8 2/23 2. Antoine Mason, Niagara 25.5 2/22 3. Billy Baron, Canisius 24.9 2/22 4. Tyler Haws, BYU 23.6 2/22 5. Aaric Murray, Texas Southern 23.5 2/22
McDermott’s Quest For The Top 10 Creighton senior Doug McDermott enters Sunday’s game 11th in NCAA history with 2,888 career points. By comparison, when McDermott faced Seton Hall on January 4th, he entered that day 51st in NCAA history with 2,532 career points. McDermott, who passed Otis Birdsong (2,832) and Larry Bird (2,850) vs. Villanova on Feb. 16th, can pass Alfredrick Hughes (2,914) with 27 points to move up to 10th place. McDermott is already the all-time leading scorer of any player to appear in a BIG EAST game, passing former Boston College great Troy Bell. McDermott has passed hoop legends J.J. Redick, Elgin Baylor, Bill Bradley, Sean Elliott, Jimmer Fredette, Joe Dumars, Calbert Cheaney, Don MacLean, Keith Van Horn, Stephen Curry, David Robinson, Hank Gathers and Wayman Tisdale in the NCAA record book during the last few weeks. Page three of this release lists every player in NCAA history to score 2,500 career points.
Wragge Shoots Lights Out, Again Ethan Wragge scored 22 points on just eight shots Wednesday night. He sank six shots from three-point range and was also perfect in four free throw attempts. It was the third 20-point game of the season and sixth of his career, but first time he’s done it on fewer than 10 shots. Wednesday also marked the seventh time in his career that he’s made six or more three-pointers in the same contest.
Player of the Week x 7 Doug McDermott’s awards haul continued on Monday when he was named BIG EAST Player of the Week as well as National Player of the Week from NBCSports.com, CBSSports.com the Naismith Trophy and the USBWA. It’s the seventh time this season McDermott’s been named BIG EAST Player of the Year. That’s a league record. This is the third time in seven weeks CBSSports.com named McDermott the National Player of the Week. This is the second time this season McDermott’s been named National Player of the Week by NBCSports.com and the USBWA. Keep in mind, there’s also been two other weeks that McDermott has been named ESPN.com National Player of the Week. McDermott averaged 32.5 points and 6.0 rebounds per game in wins last week at Butler and at home over No. 6 Villanova.
“Off” Weeks Are Still Pretty Good Doug McDermott has been named BIG EAST Player of the Week seven of the first 14 weeks of the seson. In the seven weeks he has NOT been named league player of the week, his numbers are still worthy of All-American consideration. In those seven weeks, spanning 12 games, he’s averaged 23.0 points and 7.1 rebounds per game while shooting 47.1 percent from the field and 92.0 percent at the line.
McDermott Fan Club President? You can’t be much more effusive with praise about a player than Villanova coach Jay Wright was after last Sunday’s game when asked about Doug McDermott passing Larry Bird. “I think he’s as complete a player, and I do not use that term loosely, with size, as I’ve ever seen. With 6-8, 6-9, there’s nothing he can’t do. He can take you off the dribble. He guards, he’s tough as hell guarding. He defends. He rebounds. He moves without the ball. He seals. He’s the best post player that we’ve played against and he’s the best perimeter player, and maybe one of the best passers, and he’s 6-8, 6-9. I think he’s as good a basketball player as I’ve seen.”
Sponsored By The Letter Z With starting guards Jahenns Manigat and Grant Gibbs sidelined by foul trouble, Isaiah Zierden made the most of some extended playing time last Sunday vs. No. 6 Villanova. Playing a career-high 24 minutes, Zierden added a career-best 13 points on 4-of-5 shooting from the floor and 4-for-5 accuracy at the line. Making the day all the more special was the fact that his father, was watching his son play a college game in person for just the second time. His father, Don Zierden, is a Washington Wizards assistant coach who had a break from work due to the NBA’s All-Star break.
Big Win At Marquette Creighton’s victory on Wednesday at Marquette was a rare lopsided home loss for the Golden Eagles. The 85-70 setback was the largest home conference loss for Marquette in its BIG EAST history, and biggest margin of defeat in a conference home loss since February of 2005 when it fell to UAB. The Golden Eagles had been 23-1 in its previous 24 BIG EAST home games.
Pushing 60 Creighton has shot better than 60 percent from the field and 50 percent from three-point land in each of its last two games, wins over defensive-minded teams from Villanova and Marquette. It’s the first time the Bluejays have shot over 60 percent overall and 50 percent from deep in back-to-back contests, ever. Creighton has shot 60 percent or better in 13 of 136 games under Greg McDermott, nearly 10 percent of its games
Quantity & Quality Not only is Doug McDermott a prolific scorer, but he’s an efficient one, as well. As seen in the list below, McDermott is one of nine men in NCAA history to score at least 2,800 career points and make more than 50 percent of his shots from the field. On that list, only Danny Manning has shot more accurately than McDermott from the field. 2,800 Points & 50% FG, All-Time (Sorted by FG%) Rk. Name, School FG% Points 1. Danny Manning, Kansas .593 2,951 2. Doug McDermott, Creighton .550 2,888 3. Otis Birdsong, Houston .547 2,832 4. Hersey Hawkins, Bradley .539 3,008 5. Elvin Hayes, Houston .5364 2,884 6. Tyler Hansbrough, N. Carolina .5360 2,872 7. Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati .535 2,973 8. Larry Bird, Indiana State .533 2,850 9. Lionel Simmons, La Salle .501 3,217
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 Doug McDermott, Creighton 2,888 Greg Allan Houston, Tennessee 2,801 Wade Tony Bennett, UWGB 2,285 Dick Bryce Drew, Valparaio 2,142 Homer
Points & Buckets Doug McDermott averages 25.8 points per game and is shooting 51.9 percent from the field. Since 1997-98, the only other college men to average 25.8 points or more and shoot 51.9 percent or better for an entire season have been VMI’s Reggie Williams (twice) and Kansas State’s Michael Beasley (once).
Glass Eater Though his scoring gets much of the attention, Doug McDermott remains the Creighton leader in rebounding, as well. McDermott averages 7.1 rebounds per game and has corralled at least five rebounds in 18 straight games, and 24-of-26 contests overall this year. McDermott is in position to be the first player to ever lead the Bluejays in rebounding in four straight years in records that date to 1955-56.
Like A Scene Out Of A Movie Greg McDermott picked up his 100th victory on the Creighton sideline at legendary Hinkle Fieldhouse on Feb. 13th as his son hit a game-winning shot in the final minute. McDermott was the second-quickest in CU history to 100 wins, needing 134 games. McDermott followed up his 100th win at Creighton with his 250th career victory as a Division I head coach three days later in the triumph over Villanova on Feb. 16th. Games Coach 100th Win Date 133 Arthur Schabinger 2/17/30 vs. Marquette 134 Greg McDermott 2/13/14 at Butler 144 Tom Apke 1/3/80 at Southern Illinois 165 Eddie Hickey 1/16/42 vs. Oklahoma St. 171 “Red” McManus 2/2/66 vs. Memphis 178 Dana Altman 11/20/01 vs. Western Illinois 181 Tony Barone 3/3/91 vs. Southern Illinois
Speaking of 39 Doug McDermott has a pair of 39 point games in BIG EAST play this season, doing it vs. St. John’s (Jan. 28) and again vs. No. 6 Villanova (Feb. 16). McDermott’s 39 points are the most by any player in one game in the BIG EAST this season. McDermott’s 39 were the third-most ever vs. Villanova in BIG EAST play, and most since Da’Sean Butler had 43 for West Virginia in 2009. The only other players in BIG EAST history with multiple conference games of 39+ points in the same season have been Marshon Brooks (Providence in 2010-11), Mark Tillmon (Georgetown, 1989-90), Allen Iverson (Georgetown, 1995-96), Eric Murdock (Providence, 1990-91). No player has ever had three league games of 39+ points in BIG EAST action during the same season.
Toughest Thing In Sports Creighton is 24-10 in true road games the past three years, and 36-13 when you also include neutral site games. This year’s team is 7-2 in true road games and 1-2 at neutral sites. Each of Creighton’s last 10 NCAA Tournament qualifiers have had 10 or more road/neutral wins.
Lofty Ranking Creighton is ranked 11th in this week’s Associated Press poll. This is the 63rd different week all-time the Bluejays have been ranked in the AP poll, but the second-best ranking ever. Creighton was also 11th last season, and climbed to a best-ever 10th spot the week of Jan. 20, 2003. Creighton’s Best AP Rankings, Ever Rank Date Coach 10 Jan. 20, 2003 Altman 11 Nov. 26, 2012 McDermott 11 Feb. 17, 2014 McDermott 12 Feb. 10, 2003 Altman 12 Jan. 14, 2013 McDermott 12 Feb. 3, 2014 McDermott 13 Feb. 25, 1975 Apke 13 March 4, 1975 Apke 13 Jan. 13, 2003 Altman 13 Feb. 3, 2003 Altman 13 Jan. 30, 2012 McDermott 13 Jan. 7, 2013 McDermott
Key Number From 3-Point Range Creighton’s key number from three-point range seems to be 40 percent. In the last three years under Greg McDermott, Creighton is 28-14 (.667) when shooting 40.00 percent or worse from three-point range. While respectable, that pales in comparison to CU’s 51-4 (.927) mark the last three years when shooting better than 40.00 percent from downtown. Lower the standards to 30%, and it’s still impressive. Creighton is 69-8 in the last three years when shooting 30 percent or better from deep, compared to 10-10 when shooting 29.99 percent or less. For the season, Creighton leads the nation with 42.5 percent shooting from deep, a figure that ranks ahead of 83 teams overall field goal percentage nationally.
Against Ranked Teams All sorts of interesting numbers surround Creighton’s 96-68 win over No. 4 Villanova on Jan. 20 in Miwaukee and its 101-80 victory over No. 6 Villanova on Feb. 16 in Omaha. Creighton improved to 20-118 all-time against teams that are nationally-ranked in the Associated Press poll with the two wins. No. 6 Villanova was the highest-ranked team to play Creighton in Omaha since No. 4 DePaul on Dec. 31, 1983. Creighton had last beaten a top-six team at home on Jan. 29, 1970, when it toppled No. 5 New Mexico State 72-68 at the Omaha Civic Auditorium. On Feb. 16th, Creighton improved to 2-6 all-time vs. ranked teams while ranked itself, with the first such win coming on March 16, 1974 vs. No. 16 Louisville in the NCAA Tournament. Greg McDermott improved to 2-3 at Creighton and 9-25 overall as a Division I head coach against teams in the AP’s top-25. Creighton improved to 12-33 all-time at home against ranked teams. Creighton improved to 7-53 all-time against top-10 foes.
Going Gray? Creighton has worn its new alternate gray uniforms four times this year, double-digit home wins over Nebraska, Marquette, Butler and No. 6 Villanova. Even more impressively, Creighton never trailed at any point in the first three games, and for all of 18 seconds against ‘Nova, while outscoring the opposition 191-110 in the first half. In those three games, the Bluejays led 38-8 early (and 51-25 at half) over Nebraska, 53-24 at half over Butler, 37-24 at half over Marquette and 50-37 at half vs. No. 6 Villanova.
Big Margins vs. Top 5 According to ESPN.com, Creighton’s 96-68 win over No. 4 Villanova on Jan. 20 was a victory for the ages. The chart below signifies the largest margin of victory by an unranked team over a top-five team in the last 20 seasons. Year Winner Upset Victim Won By 2011-12 Florida State #3 North Carolina 33 2008-09 Notre Dame #5 Louisville 33 2013-14 Creighton #4 Villanova 28
Endless Range Creighton set a BIG EAST and school-record with 21 three-point baskets on Jan. 20 in a 28-point win at No. 4 Villanova. Creighton’s previous mark was 20, done vs. Chattanooga in 2005. The previous BIG EAST mark was 20, done by Notre Dame vs. Villanova in 2011 and by West Virginia vs. Marquette in 2006. The 21 three-pointers were the most by any college team since 2010, and according to Athlon Sports, the most in a game between major conference teams since Kentucky made 21 vs. North Carolina on Dec. 27, 1989. Creighton’s 35 three-point attempts tied the school record, done three times previously. Creighton broke the Wells Fargo Center record for three-pointers by a Villanova opponent late in the first half (the old mark was 12), and also set a mark for most points against ‘Nova at the Wells Fargo Center with 96, passing the old mark of 90.
McDermott, FTW Doug McDermott entered the season having never hit a game-winning shot in his life. He’s now done it three times this season, including two of Creighton’s last five victories. At Saint Joseph’s on Nov. 16th, McDermott’s traditional three-point play with 4.9 seconds left helped Creighton overcome a one-point deficit in an eventual 68-64 win. Against St. John’s on Jan. 28th, McDermott’s three-pointer with 2.8 seconds left broke a game that was deadlocked at 60-all in CU’s eventual 63-60 win. Most recently on Feb. 13th, McDermott’s three-pointer with 47.8 seconds left helped Creighton overcome a 63-61 deficit and started a game-ending 7-0 run in a 68-63 win at Butler. In the last five minutes of games during the past two seasons, McDermott is 41-for-70 (58.6 percent) from the field, including 8-of-18 from three-point range, and is also 54-for-60 at the free throw line. He also owns 43 rebounds and eight assists in that time. Step it up to the last minute of games and McDermott is 9-for-12 from the field, including 2-of-2 from three-point range, and also 20-for-24 at the line. In those games, he’s grabbed 11 last-minute rebounds, as well.
BCS Busters at Home Creighton has won 22 straight regular-season home games against teams from BCS leagues (at time of game) since the start of the 1996-97 season. Those 22 wins have been by an average of 12.23 points, with 14 coming by double-digits, and just one decided by fewer than six points. BCS Schools at Creighton, Last 16 Years* Date Score 02/16/14 Creghton 101, #6 Villanova 80 02/07/14 Creighton 78, DePaul 66 01/28/14 Creighton 63, St. John’s 60 01/25/14 Creighton 79, Georgetown 66 01/14/14 Creighton 88, Butler 60 01/12/14 Creighton 95, Xavier 89 12/31/13 Creighton 67, Marquette 49 12/22/13 Creighton 68, California 54 12/08/13 Creighton 82, Nebraska 67 12/22/11 Creighton 87, Northwestern 79 12/04/11 Creighton 76, Nebraska 66 12/06/09 Creighton 67, Nebraska 61 11/24/07 Creighton 74, Nebraska 62 11/09/07 Creighton 74, DePaul 62 12/11/05 Creighton 70, Nebraska 44 12/10/03 Creighton 61, Nebraska 54 12/12/01 Creighton 76, Nebraska 70 12/09/99 Creighton 89, Nebraska 72 11/27/99 Creighton 85, #23 Iowa 76 12/20/98 Creighton 66, #18 Oklahoma State 60 12/02/98 Creighton 73, Baylor 59 12/10/97 Creighton 84, Nebraska 73 *regular-season games only
Wragge “Balboa” Playing in a city where “Rocky” was filmed, Creighton senior Ethan Wragge put one of the most impressive shooting displays in recent college basketball history on Jan. 20th. Wragge shot 7-for-7 from three-point range in the first seven minutes at No. 4 Villanova, and would finish the first half with a career-best 24 points. He finished the game with 27 points, and his nine three-pointers tied the previous Creighton record held by Kyle Korver. Wragge’s nine trifectas were one shy of the BIG EAST single-game record. During the game, Wragge’s name and #WraggeBombs were both trending nationally on Twitter. In Creighton’s previous trip to Philadelphia on Nov. 16 to play Saint Joseph’s, Wragge drained a then-best seven three-pointers and scored 21 points.
Top 25 Win, And More Creighton’s 96-68 win over No. 4 Villanova on Jan. 20 rewrote the record book in numerous ways. Consider... -The win over the No. 4 team matched the highest ranked team CU has ever beaten, previously No. 4 Arizona State on Dec. 13, 1963. -Creighton had lost 22 straight games against top-10 teams dating to 1974. -Creighton had lost 11 straight games against ranked teams since 2007. -Creighton had lost 25 straight true road games against ranked teams since a 1978 win over a Larry Bird-led Indiana State team. -It was Creighton’s first win over a top-five team since Jan. 29, 1970. Creighton had been 2-25 all-time against top-five foes. -It was the highest-ranked team ever beaten by Greg McDermott at the Division I level. -It was Creighton’s largest margin of victory in 137 games against a ranked team. The previous high was 12, done in a 53-41 win vs. No. 17 Illinois State in 1983. -The 28-point loss was Villanova’s largest in 13 years under Jay Wright, the largest by ‘Nova since 2000-01 (93-65 at UCLA), and largest at home since the 1980-81 season when it lost to Notre Dame by a 94-65 count. -The 96 points (and later 101) were the most allowed by Villanova since the 2009-10 season, when the Wildcats surrendered 103 points to Georgetown.
What A Start! Creighton made a three-pointer on each of its first nine possessions in its Jan. 20 win at No. 4 Villanova. Creighton started the game 7-for-7 from deep, missed a two-pointer but turned an offensive rebound into another trey, and then sank a trifecta on its ninth trip, as well. That brings to mind all sorts of fun stats. -According to Ken Pomeroy, Creighton became the first team since Indiana State in 2012 to make its first nine attempts from three-point range in a game. Pomeroy found evidence of six teams in the last five years to make their first nine attempts from downtown. -Pomeroy’s research also indicates that Creighton is the only team in the last five years to make nine straight three’s without any other scores to start a game. -Pomeroy also found that Creighton was the second team in five years to score each of its first 30 points via the three-pointer. Miami (Ohio) had its first 33 points vs. Western Michigan on Jan. 28, 2012. -The Villanova contest marked the eighth time under Greg McDermott that Creighton’s made its first five (or more) shots (of any distance). Creighton also made its first five shots at St. John’s on Feb. 9th. Start Opponent Date 13-13 Campbell 11/25/11 8-8 Illinois State 2/1/12 8-8 Idaho State 12/18/10 7-7 at #4 Villanova 1/20/14 6-6 Oregon 3/28/11 5-5 Chicago State 12/29/13 5-5 Alcorn State 11/8/13 5-5 UCF 3/23/11
Double G Posts Double-Double Grant Gibbs had the first point-rebound double-double of his career at St. John’s on Feb. 9th when he had 12 points and 11 rebounds. The 11 rebounds for Gibbs were a career-high, and five more than his previous season-best. Gibbs earned a point-assist double-double as a sophomore in 2011-12 when he had 12 points and 10 rebounds at Illinois State.
Winning Formulas Below is the records for each current BIG EAST school over the last four, eight and 14 (since 2000-01) seasons, ranked by overall wins. The three newcomers to the league, Butler, Creighton and Xavier, are at the top of nearly each category. Most Wins Since 2000-01 (2/20/14) Team W L Pct. Butler 333 132 .716 Creighton 330 132 .714 Xavier 327 130 .716 Marquette 312 147 .680 Georgetown 300 149 .668 Villanova 298 160 .651 Providence 230 202 .532 Seton Hall 225 204 .524 St. John’s 211 218 .492 DePaul 179 247 .420
Most Wins - Last 8 Years Team W L Pct. Butler 207 70 .747 Creighton 191 80 .705 Xavier 190 76 .714 Marquette 186 85 .686 Georgetown 182 77 .703 Villanova 176 88 .667 Providence 130 121 .518 Seton Hall 129 120 .518 St. John’s 129 124 .510 DePaul 88 161 .353
Most Wins - Last 4 Years Team W L Pct. Creighton 102 34 .750 Marquette 90 43 .677 Butler 89 48 .650 Georgetown 85 38 .691 Xavier 82 43 .656 Villanova 77 48 .616 St. John’s 69 56 .552 Providence 66 59 .528 Seton Hall 63 61 .508 DePaul 40 81 .331
McDermott Rewrites Weekly History Doug McDermott has been named BIG EAST Player of the Week seven times this season. The seven honors are most in one season in conference history, one more than the six honors won by John Wallace from Syracuse in 1995-96 and later matched by Troy Murphy of Notre Dame in 1999-2000.
Just Win Baby Creighton has won 16 straight home games, a streak that began on Feb. 19, 2013 vs. Southern Illinois. That ties the longest streak in facility history by Creighton. With two more wins, Creighton can clinch its first unbeaten home season since closing the Omaha Civic Auditorium in 2002-03 with a 17-0 mark. The school-record for longest home win streak is 28, done from 1917-1920 and again from 2002-04. Below is a list of Creighton’s longest home win streaks in the 11-year history of CenturyLink Center Omaha. Streak Dates Snapped By 16 Feb. 9, 2005 - Jan. 31, 2006 So. Illinois 16 Jan. 19, 2010 - Dec. 22, 2011 Missouri St. 16 Feb. 19, 2013 - Present ? ? ? 14 Feb. 2, 2008 - Dec. 28, 2008 No. Iowa 11 Nov. 22, 2003 - Feb. 4, 2004 So. Illinois
Dunking Machine? Doug McDermott has four dunks in the last five games, including two at St. John’s on Feb. 9th. The recent dunking spree gives him eight on the season and 18 in his career among his 1,044 career baskets. McDermott had four dunks last season, one as a sophomore and five jams as a freshman.
20 Wins, Again Creighton has reached 20 or more victories for the 16th time in the last 17 seasons, a feat that puts the Jays among an exclusive group, nationally. Just five schools nationally entered this season with 20 or more wins each of the previous 15 years: Duke, Florida, Gonzaga, Kansas and Syracuse. Creighton entered this season one of four schools with 20 or more wins in exactly 14 of the previous 15 years. That list consists of Creighton, Kent State, Kentucky and Utah State. Entering this season, that’s better than traditional powers Arizona, Connecticut and Memphis (13 each) and also ahead of Michigan State, Pittsburgh and Wisconsin (12 each). Most 20+ Win Seasons, Last 15 Years Seasons* School 2013-14 W-L Next Game 15 Syracuse 25-1 2/22 15 Florida 24-2 2/22 15 Gonzaga 23-5 2/22 15 Duke 21-6 2/22 15 Kansas 20-6 2/22 14 Creighton 22-4 2/23 14 Kentucky 20-6 2/22 14 Utah State 15-11 2/22 14 Kent State 15-11 2/22 *entering 2013-14
A Pattern of 20-Win Seasons With a victory on Feb. 13th at Butler, Creighton clinched its 26th 20-win season in the 96-season history of Bluejay Basketball. This year marks the 17th time CU has won 22 games or more. Creighton’s 22-Win Seasons, Sorted By Wins W-L Season Postseason? 29-5 2002-03 NCAA (0-1) 29-6 2011-12 NCAA (1-1) 28-8 2012-13 NCAA (1-1) 27-8 2008-09 NIT (1-1) 24-8 2000-01 NCAA (0-1) 24-8 1990-91 NCAA (1-1) 23-5 1921-22 -- 23-7 1973-74 NCAA (2-1) 23-9 2001-02 NCAA (1-1) 23-10 1999-00 NCAA (0-1) 23-11 2004-05 NCAA (0-1) 23-16 2010-11 CBI (4-2) 22-4 so far 2013-14 ? ? ? 22-7 1963-64 NCAA (1-2) 22-9 1998-99 NCAA (1-1) 22-11 2007-08 NIT (1-1) 22-11 2006-07 NCAA (0-1)
Double-Digit League Wins, As Well Creighton has won 10 or more conference games in each of the last 18 seasons, a mark it extended on Feb. 13 at Butler. On a national basis, the only other current school with at least 17 straight years of 10 or more league wins is Kansas (20 straight seasons after reaching the mark earlier this season). Since 2007-08, the only 25 teams with 10 or more league wins each season (prior to 2013-14) are Belmont, Butler, BYU, Creighton, Davidson, Duke, George Mason, Gonzaga, Kansas, Louisville, Memphis, Mercer, Middle Tennessee, Murray State, Oakland, Ohio State, Oral Roberts, Quinnipiac, Robert Morris, Saint Mary’s, Temple, UNC Asheville, VCU, Weber State and Wisconsin.
Winning Ways Creighton owns 79 wins in the past three seasons and 102 wins during the last four years. The totals are among the best stretches in school history, as seen below Most Wins, 3-Year Stretch W-L Years 80 2010-13 79 2011-Present 76 2000-03 72 2001-04 72 2002-05
Most Wins, 4-Year Stretch W-L Years 102 2010-Present 99 1999-03 98 2009-13 97 2008-12 96 2000-04
Postgame Meeting With Bono Creighton met U2 musician Bono at the Teterboro (N.J.) airport following its Feb. 9 game at St. John’s. Bono was at the airport on his way to Los Angeles and like the Jays, was waiting for his plane to get de-iced before taking off. After posing for several photos with the team, the rock legend and noted humanitarian talked to Director of Basketball Operations Jeff Vanderloo at length about a variety of topics.
Fundamentally Sound Doug McDermott led the nation in 2011-12 with 307 field goals made, and his 284 buckets last year once again led the nation. He’s leading the country once again this year with 233. Prior to McDermott, no player had led the country in field goals made in back-to-back seasons since Wayman Tisdale in 1983-85. According to research from ESPN, he’s the nation’s first player in more than 20 years to make 1,000 career field goals. The last time someone made their 1,000th field goal was way back in 1992-93, when Indiana’s Calbert Cheaney (1,018) and Mississippi Valley State’s Alphonso Ford (1,121) both did it. 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 2013-14 233 90 24 Totals 1,044 460 134
Elite Eight Creighton’s Doug McDermott owns 2,888 career points and 1,027 career rebounds. Nationally, McDermott is the eighth man to own at least 2,750 points and 1,000 rebounds, an elite group that includes Larry Bird, Oscar Robertson, Tyler Hansbrough, Elvin Hayes and Danny Manning. The complete list is on page five.
Raining Points On The Red Storm Doug McDermott had 39 points in the Jan. 28 win over St. John’s. It was the most points scored against St. John’s by a BIG EAST player since Allen Iverson had 39 in 1996, and fourth-most ever by a league opponent. McDermott is only the fourth BIG EAST player to ever score 39 or more against the Red Storm, joining Donyell Marshall (42 in 1994), Terry Dehere (41 in 1993) and Iverson (39 in 1996). Marshall, Dehere and Iverson would all end up being first or second team All-Americans. McDermott’s 39 points were the most by any player in the BIG EAST this season, and most since Villanova’s Maalik Wayns had 39 at Cincinnati on Jan. 14, 2012. McDermott’s 39 points are tied for 14th-most in Creighton history for a single game. McDermott’s 39 points tied the third-highest effort of his career, and were five shy of his career high 44. McDermott and Bob Portman are the only players in CU history with four or more games of 39+ points.
Last Second Drama Doug McDermott hit a game-winning three-pointer with 2.8 seconds left to beat St. John’s in Creighton’s home game on Jan. 28th. It was Creighton’s first go-ahead score in the last 10 seconds of a home game since Antoine Young’s bucket with 0.3 seconds in 2012 vs. Long Beach State left made him the first player in CenturyLink Center Omaha history with two game-winning scores at the facility. Creighton is now 7-2 in games with a go-ahead score in the final 10 seconds in the 11-year old facility. Creighton’s Go-Ahead Scores in Wins, Last 10 Seconds Date Opponent Score Player/Score Time 11/26/05 Dayton W 91-90* Funk FG :5.7 01/28/06 Wichita St. W 57-55 Tolliver FG :0.0 11/25/06 George Mason W 58-56 Watts FT :7.5 03/18/08 Rhode Island W 74-73 Witter 3FG :3.2 01/13/10 Southern Illinois W 71-69 Young FG :1.3 02/18/12 Long Beach St. W 81-79 Young FG :0.3 01/28/14 St. John’s W 63-60 McDermott 3FG :2.8 *double-overtime
Opponent Go-Ahead Scores in CU Losses, Last 10 Seconds Date Opponent Score Player/Score Time 03/20/06 Miami (Fla.) 53-52 G. Diaz FT :2.6 01/20/07 Southern Illinois 58-57 B. Mullins FG :4.1
Down To The Wire Creighton’s 63-60 win over St. John’s was a rare Bluejay game that went down to the wire. It is the only time in 26 games this season that a contest was decided by three points or less, and just the fifth such game during the 61 games over the previous two years. After going 1-6 in his first year at Creighton, Greg McDermott is 10-3 on the Bluejay sidelines in games decided by three or fewer points in the last three campaigns.
Doug Does His Share Doug McDermott had 39 of Creighton’s 63 points in its Jan. 28 win over St. John’s. In the last 20 years, it was just the fifth time that a Bluejay had scored 50 percent or more of his team’s points. The 61.9 percent of CU’s points was the most by any player in those 20 years. 50% Or More of Creighton’s Points, Games Since 1993-94 CU Pts. Player vs. Opponent Date 63 39, Doug McDermott vs. St. John’s 1/28/14 74 39, Doug McDermott at Missouri St. 1/11/13 65 40, Rodney Buford vs. Bradley 12/30/98 72 36, Rodney Buford vs. Illinois St. 2/5/96 50 25, Tad Ackerman at Wichita St. 2/23/
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 on Nov. 18 when it was No. 23rd. The Jays then climbed to 20th the week of Nov. 25th. The Jays dropped out of the poll for six weeks before returning on Jan. 13th with a No. 20 ranking. After one week out of the poll, CU was 20th two weeks ago before skyrocketing to 12th on Feb. 3rd, dropping to 18th on Feb. 10th, and moving up to 11th on Feb. 17th, the program’s best mark since last year’s team was 11th in the Nov. 26, 2012 poll. Creighton is 78-28 all-time when ranked in the AP poll. Including the February 17th poll result, Creighton has been ranked 35 times in 73 weeks of AP polls under Greg McDermott, and ranked between 26th-to-28th in nine other AP polls. The 35 weeks in the top-25 under McDermott is more than any coach in Bluejay history. In the February 17th USA Today Coaches poll, Creighton was ranked 12th, and the Jays are also eighth in this week’s NCAA RPI ranking. Most Weeks in AP Top 25 at CU, By Coach Greg McDermott, 2010-Pres. 35 (of 73) Dana Altman, 1994-2010 18 Tom Apke, 1974-81 5 Eddie Sutton, 1969-74 5
Over .500, Again Creighton has been better than .500 in either the first or second-half of its league season in 36 straight trips through the league, including this year’s first half. Here’s how Creighton’s teams have fared in the various halves of the MVC/BIG EAST season since 1995-96. Year 1st Half 2nd Half 2013-14 8-1 4-1 so far 2012-13 7-2 6-3 2011-12 8-1 6-3 2010-11 5-4 5-4 2009-10 5-4 5-4 2008-09 5-4 9-0 2007-08 5-4 5-4 2006-07 6-3 7-2 2005-06 7-2 5-4 2004-05 5-4 6-3 2003-04 7-2 5-4 2002-03 8-1 7-2 2001-02 8-1 6-3 2000-01 5-4 9-0 1999-00 5-4 6-3 1998-99 6-3 5-4 1997-98 5-4 7-2 1996-97 5-4 5-4 1995-96 4-5 5-4 Total 114-57 (.667) 113-54 (.677)
Wragge Earns League & National Honor Senior forward Ethan Wragge was named BIG EAST Player of the Week and ESPN.com’s National Player of the Week on Jan. 27 after helping Creighton to double-digit wins over No. 4 Villanova and Georgetown and averaging 19.5 points and 3.5 rebounds. He shot a blistering 60 percent from the field (12-20), with all 20 attempts coming from behind the three-point line, and was also perfect in three attempts from the charity stripe. Wragge opened his week with one of the best shooting displays in Creighton history while scoring a career-high 27 points. He made 9-of-14 three-point shots, tying a single-game mark first set by Kyle Korver, while adding three rebounds and three assists. Wragge made each of his first seven three-point attempts, including one in each of the game’s first seven minutes, as the Bluejays surged to a 27-8 lead against one of the nation’s top defenses. Wragge’s eighth trey of the first half stopped a 13-0 run that had drawn ‘Nova within 15 points, and he would tie the school mark with 14:02 left in the game. The win was Creighton’s first over a ranked team in a true road game since 1978, and matched the highest-ranked club that the Jays have ever beaten. In the Jan. 25 win over Georgetown, Wragge had 12 points and four rebounds in a 13-point victory. After Creighton fell behind 11-7 early, Wragge scored all his points during a pivotal 15-4 run in a five-minute stretch that gave CU the lead for good. His second trifecta of the day made history as he joined Korver as the second player in Creighton history with 300 or more three-pointers.
Over 500 Points, Again Doug McDermott is third in the nation with 672 points this season, his fourth straight season of 500 or more points. McDermott is the only player in Creighton history to score 500 or more in four straight seasons, one more than the three times done by Paul Silas (1961-64), Bob Harstad (1988-91) and Rodney Buford (1996-99). Since 1997-98, the only other players nationwide to post four seasons of 580 or more points are Keydren Clark and Tyler Hansbrough. McDermott has scored in double-figures in 126 of 136 career games, including 94-of-97 contests since the start of his sophomore season.
Home Sweet Home Creighton is 62-7 (.899) at CenturyLink Center Omaha under Greg McDermott, improving to 159-25 (.864) all-time in the 11-year-old facility. Factor in a 17-0 home mark at the Omaha Civic Auditorium in 2002-03 and two wins at the Civic in the 2010 CIT, and the Bluejays are 177-25 (.876) at home since the start of the 2002-03 campaign. Doug McDermott is averaging 28.4 points per game at home this season in just 32.5 minutes per game. He’s scored 16.2 points per game in the first half at home this season, and reached double-figures before half in all but one contest. Each of Ethan Wragge’s last 58 field goals at home have been three-pointers. He last made a two-pointer at home on Jan. 8, 2013 vs. Drake.
Point, Counterpoint Austin Chatman owns 329 career assists in his first 96 career games. With seven helpers on Jan. 25th vs. Georgetown, Chatman became the 13th player in Bluejay history to 300 assists. He is seventh on the list of fewest games played to reach 300 dimes. Creighton’s Quickest Players to 300 Assists Games Name 53 Ralph Bobik 56 Grant Gibbs 59 Randy Eccker 69 Ryan Sears 85 Tyler McKinney 89 Duan Cole 91 Austin Chatman 92 Vernon Moore 94 Josh Dotzler 100 Antoine Young
1 If By Land, 2 If By Sea, 3 If By Wragge Ethan Wragge owns 1,086 career points, but just 26 two-point field goals. Only one player since 1997 has scored 1,000 career points with fewer than career 40 two-pointers, Butler’s Bruce Horan (2003-06). Horan finished his career with 1,018 career points and just 12 two-pointers, thanks to 314 treys and 52 free throws. Since 2006-07, Wragge owns the nation’s only two seasons with at least 78 three-pointers and six or fewer two-point baskets, having done it last year (78 3’s, 6 2’s) and this season (89 3’s, 2 2’s). Wragge’s 89 treys this year are more than any other player since 1997-98 in a season with two or fewer two-point field goals. In those seasons, Horan owns the mark for most trifectas with three two-pointers with 113 (and 3 2’s) in 2005-06. Among active players, the active player with more than 1,000 career points and the second-fewest amount of two-pointers is Harvard’s Laurent Rivard (1,188 points; 86 two-pointers).
Racing To 75 Ethan Wragge needed just 20 games to reach 75 three-pointers made this season. He was the second-fastest player in program history to reach the milestone, trailing only Kyle Korver (16 games) in 2002-03. In Korver’s magical 2002-03 season, he would finish with a school-record 129 three-pointers in 34 games, an average of 3.79 treys per game. By comparison, Wragge’s 89 three-pointers in 26 games this year are a similar 3.42 trifectas per contest. Below is a list of the fewest games to 75 three-pointers in program history. Fewest Games Before Making 75th 3-Pointer Name Year Games to 75 Kyle Korver 2002-03 16 Ethan Wragge 2013-14 20 Tad Ackerman 1994-95 25 Kyle Korver 2000-01 26 Booker Woodfox 2008-09 27 Kyle Korver 2001-02 28 Rod Mason 1987-88 32 Ethan Wragge 2012-13 35 Doug McDermott 2012-13 35
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 Feb. 20) ranks Creighton with thebest mark nationwide in “Adjusted Efficiency” at 126.9 points per 100 possessions, first in “Effective Field Goal %” at 59.2 percent, first in three-point percentage at 42.6 percent and fourth in “Assists Per Field Goals Made” at 65.2 percent.
Shooting Star Ethan Wragge made multiple three-pointers in 16 games from Nov. 28 to Jan. 25th. By comparison, Stephen Curry (in 2013) is the only NBA player in the last three years with multiple treys in 16 or more straight games, as he reached 19 games in a row. Wragge is the first Creighton player with multiple three-pointers in 16 straight games, three more than the previous mark set by Kyle Korver, who ended his career in 2003 with 13 such games. Wragge has made four or more three-pointers in 13 of 26 games this season for Creighton.
Shooting Towards A Triple Crown Not only is Creighton leading in the nation in three-point percentage (42.5), but the Bluejays are nearly making three-pointers at a near-record clip, as well. Creighton owns 271 three-pointers through 26 games this season, an average of 10.42 per game. In the NCAA Division I history, the only team to average more than 10.7 three-pointers per game was the Troy State squad (11.11) in 1995-96. It’s worth noting that this season Iona is averaging 10.7 three-pointers per game, as well.
Jays Earn 10 Home Wins, Again With a win vs. Butler on Jan. 14, Creighton clinched its 10th home win this season. Creighton has now won 10 or more home games in 18 straight seasons. The current streak is a school-record, six more than the previous standard of 12 straight seasons from the 1969-70 season to the 1980-81 campaign with 10 or more home wins. Creighton has won 10 or more home games in 35 of the last 45 seasons.
Player of the Week, Again Doug McDermott was named BIG EAST Player of the Week on Jan. 13th, the fifth time this year he was honored. McDermott averaged 26.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists as Creighton posted wins over DePaul and Xavier McDermott was also named National Player of the Week by the USBWA, NBCSports.com and CBS Sports.
Deadly From Downtown Through games of February 20th, Creighton leads the nation with 271 three-point baskets and 42.1 percent marksmanship from deep, and is second with 10.4 three-pointers per game. Creighton also ranked first with 18.2 assists per game, first in assist/turnover ratio (1.81), sixth in scoring margin (+14.6), sixth in field goal percentage (.495), 16th in scoring offense (81.0) and 11th in free-throw percentage (.759). Doug McDermott ranked first nationally in scoring average and field goals made and third in total points. Ethan Wragge ranked second in three-point percentage, eighth in three-pointers made and seventh in three-pointers per game. Jahenns Manigat ranks sixth nationally with a 3.68 assist/turnover ratio, as well.
Nominated For Everything, It Seems Senior Doug McDermott was one of 25 men named to the John R. Wooden Award Midseason Watch List on Jan. 22nd. This is the third straight year McDermott has been on the midseason top 25 chart. McDermott was one of 23 men named to the Oscar Robertson Trophy Midseason Watch List on Thursday, Jan. 23rd. This is the third straight year McDermott has been on the midseason top 25 list that is determined by the USBWA. McDermott is one of 10 remaining men up for the Senior CLASS Award, it was announced on February 12th. Last but not least, McDermott is one of 30 candidates for the Naismith Award, it was announced on February 13th.
Top Dog At The Halfway Point Two-time All-American Doug McDermott is a well-known commodity among the national experts who cover the sport. With conference play underway, numerous national publications and websites have named their Midseason Players of the Year. Among the following individuals/organizations have named McDermott the front-runner for National Player of the Year were: Jay Bilas (ESPN), Jeff Goodman (ESPN), Andy Katz (ESPN), Jay Williams (ESPN), Dick Vitale (ESPN), Digger Phelps (ESPN), Dan Dakich (ESPN), Gary Parrish (CBS Sports), Jeff Borzello (CBS Sports), Jerry Palm (CBS Sports), Jon Rothstein (CBS Sports), CJ Moore (Bleacher Report), Kelli Anderson (Sports Illustrated), Seth Davis (Sports Illustrated), Luke Winn (Sports Illustrated) and Brian Hamilton (Sports Illustrated).
Link To Greatness Creighton’s home, CenturyLink Center Omaha, has received several rave reviews in recent weeks. ESPN.com’s Jeff Goodman ranked it as the 10th best college basketball arena. ESPN’s Dick Vitale listed the facility among six on his “Bucket List”. Stadium Journey, a site that ranks arenas, named it the 18th-best venue in North America, and fourth-best among college basketball sites. Only Allen Fieldhouse (Kansas), Rupp Arena (Kentucky), FedEx Forum (Memphis) were ranked higher.
McDermott Named Player of the Week Creighton senior Doug McDermott picked up two more awards on Jan. 6 as he was named National Player of the Week by CBSSports.com in addition to his BIG EAST Conference Player of the Week accolade. McDermott averaged 24.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game in double-digit victories over Marquette and Seton Hall. This was his fourth BIG EAST Player of the Week accolade this season, and his second National Player of the Week Award (also Nov. 18 from ESPN.com). In the write-up on McDermott from CBSSports.com, Gary Parrish writes “McDermott is, quite simply, having one of the greatest college careers in modern history.”
Just Your Ordinary 30/10/5 Game Doug McDermott celebrated his first game since his 22nd birthday with 30 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in a 13-point road win at Seton Hall on Jan. 4th. McDermott was Creighton’s first player with a 30 point, 10 rebound, five assist line in the same game since Benoit Benjamin had 45 points, 16 rebounds and five assists on Jan. 19, 1985 vs. Indiana State.
Ball Control Offense Creighton had just four turnovers in 66 possessions vs. Seton Hall on Jan. 4th, its fewest in any games of Greg McDermott’s four-year tenure on the Bluejay sideline. Just 10 days later, the Bluejays did it again in a victory over Butler. The Jays also did it on Feb. 7 vs. St. John’s. Creighton’s four turnovers were its fewest since having three miscues on Feb. 1, 2005 in a win vs. Wichita State, a span of 335 games.
Scoring Early & Often Doug McDermott has scored in double-figures before the second media timeout in 11 of Creighton’s last 18 games, and 14 of Creighton’s 26 games this season. In 26 games this year, McDermott has scored 235 points before checking out for the first time, logging a collective 224:43 of court time before hitting the bench. That gives him 1.05 points per minute to start games, good for a 41.83 points per game average if her were to maintain it over the course of 40 minutes. Looking only at the first five minutes of games this season, McDermott has scored 155 points in those 130 minutes, an average of 1.19 points per minute and a per-40 minute average of 47.69 points per game at that pace.
Playing With A Lead In the 11 year history of CenturyLink Center Omaha, Creighton has led wire-to-wire in 48 games, including all five December home games this season, the Jan. 14 Butler game and the Jan. 28 St. John’s game. That means the Jays haven’t trailed in seven of the past 11 home contests. Creighton has trailed for just 23:33 of 560:00 minutes this season at home, and just 27:47 of its last 640:00 minutes during its 16-game home win streak. Impressively, Creighton has not trailed at any point in the second half during that home win streak, winning 15 of the 16 games by six or more points (and all but two by double-digits).
Good As Gold Not only has Creighton started games quickly this season, but the Bluejays have also done a good job maintaining those leads. The Bluejays have won 31 straight games when leading with 5:00 to play. Overall under Greg McDermott, Creighton is 92-4 when leading with 5:00 left, including victories in 54 of the last 55 scenarios. The Bluejays are also 3-0 under McDermott when tied with 5:00 to play. CU is 5-30 under McDermott when trailing with 5:00 left, with the last such rally coming on Feb. 25, 2011 at Indiana State.
Seniors Lead The Way Creighton’s senior class has led the way in recent weeks, providing tremendous scoring and shooting in addition to unquestioned leadership. Take a look at the collective performances of Grant Gibbs, Jahenns Manigat, Doug McDermott and Ethan Wragge during the club’s last 19 games: Opponent 3FG-3FGA Points Rebounds Long Beach State 8-16 39 9 Nebraska 11-24 67 21 Arkansas-Pine Bluff 7-22 47 16 California 5-18 46 24 Chicago State 15-21 60 14 Marquette 11-24 51 21 Seton Hall 9-22 64 27 DePaul 7-14 42 20 Xavier 12-24 61 13 Butler 5-11 36 14 Providence 3-13 38 10 #4 Villanova 18-27 69 11 Georgetown 6-15 36 15 St. John’s 6-12 46 15 DePaul 6-20 51 19 St. John’s 4-13 45 23 Butler 7-15 43 12 #6 Villanova 6-9 55 11 Marquette 11-18 61 18 19-Game Totals 150-316 957 313 Rest of Team 36-122 557 311
Give Me Five Creighton’s win vs. Chicago State on Dec. 29th was the Jays fifth straight this season, a streak that reached 10 after a Jan. 14 win vs. Butler. The Bluejays have now had at least one five-game win streak in 16 of the last 17 seasons. Since 1988-89, the Bluejays have made the NCAA’s, NIT or CBI all 18 previous times they’ve had a five-game winning streak in a season, but missed the NCAA/NIT/CBI all seven times they haven’t.
On A Roll Since the start of 2011-12, Creighton is a remarkable 79-18. On a national basis, Creighton’s 79 wins since the start of last season ranks eighth, through games of Feb. 21 as seen below. Most Wins, Since 2011-12 School ‘11-12 ‘12-13 ‘13-14 W-L Next Syracuse 34-3 30-10 25-1 88-14 2/22 Louisville 30-10 35-5 22-4 87-19 2/22 Wichita State 27-6 30-9 28-0 83-16 2/22 Kansas 32-7 31-6 19-6 83-19 2/22 Gonzaga 26-7 32-3 23-5 81-15 2/22 Ohio State 31-8 29-8 21-6 81-22 2/22 Kentucky 38-2 21-12 20-6 80-20 2/22 Creighton 29-6 28-8 22-4 79-18 2/23 Michigan State 29-8 27-9 22-5 78-22 2/23
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 24-4 against teams from those leagues, with two losses (North Carolina, Duke) coming in the Round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament, and the others on the road at Providence and St. John’s. Eighteen of the 24 wins came by double-digits, and just 11 of the games took place in Omaha. Individually, Doug McDermott has scored at least 19 points in all but two of those games (Alabama & Georgetown), and in both of those he had a double-double. McDermott has averaged 26.3 points and 7.7 rebounds per game in the 28 games. 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 11/28/13 vs. Arizona State W 88-60 27 6 12/08/13 Nebraska W 82-67 33 8 12/22/13 California W 68-54 20 11 12/31/13 Marquette W 67-49 19 7 01/04/14 at Seton Hall W 79-66 30 10 01/07/14 at DePaul W 81-62 19 5 01/12/14 Xavier W 95-89 35 7 01/14/14 Butler W 88-60 28 5 01/18/14 at Providence L 68-81 21 7 01/20/14 at #4 Villanova W 96-68 23 5 01/25/14 Georgetown W 76-63 14 10 01/28/14 St. John’s W 63-60 39 6 02/07/14 DePaul W 78-66 32 9 02/09/14 at St. John’s L 65-70 25 5 02/13/14 at Butler W 68-63 26 5 02/16/14 #6 Villanova W 101-80 39 7 02/19/14 at Marquette W 85-70 25 8
3’s vs. 2’s In Creighton’s last 19 games, the Bluejays have attempted 1,039 shot attempts, with nearly half (460) of those coming from beyond the arc. Creighton has made 324-of-579 two-pointers in that time, accounting for 648 points (1.12 points per shot). Creighton has made 193-of-460 three-pointers in that time, accounting for 579 points (1.26 points per shot). In its Dec. 29 win vs. Chicago State, Creighton made 16-of-25 three-point attempts, good for 1.92 points per shot attempt from deep. To earn the same point total (48 points) from 25 two-point attempts, Creighton would need to shoot 24-for-25 (96 percent). Perhaps that’s why Greg McDermott said in the postgame press conference: “If you’re going to give us an open 3-point shot, that’s the best percentage shot we can get.” Chicago State head coach Tracy Dildy agreed, “We’ve watched every game they had played, and we knew this was the best shooting team in the country. If there is another team in the country that shoots the ball like these guys shoot, I would love to see that team.”
Consistent Challengers Eleven of Creighton’s last 16 teams finished either first or second in The Valley’s regular-season race. Two of the five that didn’t won the MVC Tournament. The Bluejays won the MVC in 2000-01 and 2012-13, tied for the title in 2001-02 and 2008-09. CU was second in the MVC in 1997-98 and 2006-07, tied for second in the MVC in 1998-99, 2003-04 and 2005-06, and finished tied for third in 2004-05. The 1999-00 club was fourth in the MVC, but won the MVC Tournament, while the 2010-11 club tied for fourth place. Creighton’s MVC Finishes, Last 16 Years 1st Place 2000-01, 2012-13 Tied for First 2001-02 (won MVC Tourn.), 2008-09 2nd Place 1997-98, 2002-03 (won MVC Tourn.), 2006-07 (won MVC Tourn.), 2011-12 (won MVC Tourn.) Tied for 2nd 1998-99 (won MVC Tourn.), 2003-04, 2005-06 Tied for 3rd Place 2004-05 (won MVC Tourn.) 4th Place 1999-00 (won MVC Tourn.); 2007-08; 2009-10 Tied for 4th Place 2010-11
McDermott By The Numbers Senior forward Doug McDermott has put together very similar numbers throughout his career, regardless of result, site, level of competition or score differential, as seen below: Breakdown MPG FG% 3FG% FT% RPG PPG Wins 30.7 .574 .485 .852 7.5 22.7 Losses 32.7 .475 .383 .767 7.8 16.8 Home 30.0 .560 .444 .840 7.6 21.7 Away 32.0 .554 .494 .825 7.4 20.4 Neutral 33.2 .507 .440 .843 7.7 21.5 BCS Foes 32.8 .524 .426 .878 7.0 24.0 Non-BCS Foes 30.7 .561 .473 .820 7.7 20.3 Margin 0-9 33.0 .529 .436 .771 7.6 19.7 Margin 10-19 31.4 .541 .427 .861 7.7 21.3 Margin 20+ 27.1 .612 .560 .902 7.2 24.1 CAREER (All) 31.2 .550 .459 .836 7.6 21.2
Consistency A Key Doug McDermott has scored 20 or more points in 22 of the 26 games he’s played in this season, and 29 of his last 34 contests dating to last season. He had 19 points in two of the games where he didn’t reach 20 points. Nationally, only 29 players average 20 points per game or more, which gives you an idea of how hard it is to reach that mark on a nightly basis.
Toe The Line Creighton shot a school-record 75.9 percent from the free-throw line last season, and with much of the same team back, it’s no surprise the team is shooting 75.9 percent at the line in 2013-14. Creighton has shot 77.3 percent or better from the stripe in 15 of the last 20 games, connecting on 297-of-377 overall (78.8 percent) in that time. Creighton has missed two or less free throws in eight of its last 17 games, going 24-for-26 vs. both Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Villanova, 11-of-13 vs. Cal, 20-of-22 vs. Chicago State, 4-for-4 vs. Marquette, 7-of-8 at Seton Hall, 12-of-13 at Providence and 19-of-21 free throws at St. John’s.
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 17,766 through 14 home dates, good for fifth-nationally. 2013-14 Attendance Leaders (2/21) Rk. School Average Next Home 1. Syracuse 26,223 3/4 2. Kentucky 22,780 2/22 3. Louisville 21,186 2/27 4. North Carolina 18,127 2/22 5. Creighton 17,766 2/23 6. Indiana 17,336 3/2 7. Wisconsin 17,085 2/25 8. Kansas 16,469 2/22 9. Ohio State 16,215 2/22 10. Memphis 15,884 2/22
Highest Average Attendance, Creighton History Avg. Att. School Year 17,766 Creighton 2013-14 17,155 Creighton 2012-13 16,665 Creighton 2011-12 15,930 Creighton 2008-09 15,909 Creighton 2006-07
National Leaders Doug McDermott’s career stats rank among the top-10 active players nationally in 10 of the 15 different categories tracked by the NCAA through games of Feb. 16th. Rank Category Total Leader 1 Points 2,863 -- 1 FG Made 1,035 -- 1 FG Attempted 1,885 -- 1 Scoring Average 21.2 -- 2 FT Made 552 D. Burton, 584 3 Rebounds 1,020 A. Rubit, 1,126 4 3-Point Percentage .458 S. Hinrichs, .458 5 Double-Doubles 34 A. Rubit, 51 8 Games Played 135 J. Gollon, 145 10 FT Attempted 660 A. Francis, 771
McDermott In Elite Company Since the start of his sophomore year (2011-12), Doug McDermott has averaged 23.8 points and 7.7 rebounds per game in 97 contests. That makes him the only college player in the nation to average at least 23 points and seven rebounds per contest in that span. In same time, only NBA guys to do so are Kevin Durant (29.0 & 7.9), LeBron James (26.9 & 7.7), Carmelo Anthony (26.4 & 7.2) and Kevin Love (25.0 & 13.4).
Simply No Comparison Doug McDermott’s stats this season of 25.8 points, 7.1 rebounds and 44.8 percent marksmanship from three-point range put him in even more elite company than imagined. Since 1998-99, no college player has averaged at least 25 points, 7.0 rebounds and 44 percent or better from three-point range over the course of an entire season (min. 15 3FG’s). In NBA history, no player has ever averaged 25 points, 7.0 or more rebounds and shot 44 percent or better from three-point range (min. 15 3FG’s) for a season, either.
Full House Creighton has attracted eight of its 20 largest home crowds in program history this season. Here’s a look at Creighton’s top-20 home crowds all-time. Rank Att. Opponent Date 1. 18,859 Georgetown 01/25/14 2. 18,797 #6 Villanova 02/16/14 3. 18,735 Wichita State 02/11/12 4. 18,613 Wichita State 03/02/13 5. 18,525 Marquette 12/31/13 6. 18,494 Illinois State 02/09/13 7. 18,458 Evansville 12/29/12 8. 18,436 Bradley 01/28/12 9. 18,323 DePaul 02/07/14 10. 18,111 Bradley 02/02/13 11. 18,078 Tulsa 11/23/13 12. 18,073 Drake 01/08/13 13. 17,954 Wichita State 12/28/08 14. 17,740 Alcorn State 11/08/13 15. 17,694 Indiana State 01/05/13 16. 17,676 Northwestern 12/22/11 17. 17,665 Missouri State 12/28/11 18. 17,607 Drexel 02/17/07 19. 17,602 Butler 01/14/14 20. 17,589 Xavier 01/12/14
Speaking of 30 According to available school records, Doug McDermott owns 23 of the 129 games in Creighton history with 30 points or more. That surpasses Bob Portman for most 30-point games in program history. In addition, McDermott’s nine games this season of 30 points or more are third-most in school history. He also owns fifth and seventh place on that list. Most 30-Point Games, Career 30-Pt. Games Name Years 23 Doug McDermott 2010-Pres. 22 Bob Portman 1966-69 12 Bob Harstad 1987-91 9 Paul Silas 1961-64 6 Wally Anderzunas 1965-67, 68-69 6 Cyril Baptiste 1969-71 6 Benoit Benjamin 1982-85
Most 30-Point Games, Season 30-Pt. Games Name Year 10 Bob Portman 1967-68 10 Bob Portman 1968-69 9 Doug McDermott 2013-14 8 Bob Harstad 1989-90 7 Doug McDermott 2012-13 6 Doug McDermott 2011-12 5 Wally Anderzunas 1968-69 5 Benoit Benjamin 1984-85 4 Paul Silas 1962-63 4 Cyril Baptiste 1970-71 4 Rod Mason 1987-88
Thirty Point Buck Doug McDermott owns 32 points or more in eight of his last 15 home games. He scored 41 points in his final home game last year vs. Wichita State (March 2), 37 against UMKC (Nov. 11), 33 vs. Tulsa (Nov. 23), 33 vs. Nebraska (Dec. 8), 35 vs. Xavier (Jan. 12), 39 points vs. St. John’s (Jan. 28), 32 points vs. DePaul (Feb. 7) and 39 vs. Villanova (Feb. 16). McDermott’s 33 points were the most by a Bluejay against Nebraska since Duan Cole had 35 points on Dec. 7, 1991. In his last 15 home games, McDermott has played 487 minutes and scored a staggering 439 points. McDermott has scored 30 or more points in 23 career games. By comparison, all other Creighton players since 1991-92 have combined for 17 games of 30+ points in CU’s 722 games played in that period.
Experienced Starters One reason for Creighton’s success is its veteran line-up. Creighton’s starting line-up has a combined 22 years of college experience under their belt, including 20 seasons at Creighton. Grant Gibbs is a sixth-year senior who is in his fourth year with the Bluejay program. He has started every game the past three seasons and before his recent injury was on pace to challenge CU’s record for career assists. Ethan Wragge is a fifth-year senior who medically redshirted after plantar fasciitis issues during his second year on campus. He is second in school history in three-pointers made, trailing only 11-year NBA veteran Kyle Korver. Both Jahenns Manigat and Doug McDermott are four-year seniors. McDermott has started every game of his career, while Manigat has started all but one of the last 112 games. McDermott already owns Creighton records for career points, field goals, three-point percentage and consecutive free throws made. According to Ken Pomeroy’s advanced statistics, Creighton’s line-up averages 2.44 years of experience, making the Bluejays the 14th-most veteran group nationally, and tops among the nation’s BCS schools.
Korver Sets NBA Record Creighton alum Kyle Korver continues to extend his NBA record streak of games with a three-pointer. Korver enters Friday’s (Feb. 21) game at Detroit with a three-pointer in 122 straight games, smashing Dana Barros’ previous league-record of 89, and more than double the length of Joe DiMaggio’s hallowed hit streak in baseball. In 2009-10, Korver set an NBA single-season record by shooting 53.6 percent from three-point range, a record that still stands. Korver played at Creighton from 1999-2003 and owns the school record with 371 career three-pointers, helping the Bluejays to a 29-5 mark as a senior. Korver’s longest three-point streak at Creighton was 28 and snapped by Greg McDermott’s UNI team. His second-longest streak was 27 and snapped by Steve Merfeld’s Evansville team. Korver made at least one trifecta in 114 of his 128 games as a Bluejay.
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 25 points per game this season. To help put McDermott’s career in perspective, the chart on page eight shows how many points McDermott owns and which famous ballplayer that is most comparable to. This season alone, McDermott has surpassed legends like Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, Ryne Sandberg, Mike Schmidt, Kirby Puckett, Ernie Banks and Willie Stargell.
Productive Minutes According to bbstate.com, Doug McDermott ranks first nationally this season with 31.5 points per 40 minutes played. McDermott led the same category last year with 29.3 points per 40 minutes, and was second as a sophomore at 28.7 points per 40 minutes.
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 180 of his 186 shots this season from three-point range, sinking an incredible 89 of them (49.4 percent) behind the arc. 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, before tying Kyle Korver’s school record with nine three-pointers at No. 4 Villanova on Jan. 20th. With four three-pointers vs. George Washington on Dec. 1, Wragge moved past Ryan Sears into second place in Creighton history for career trifectas. He now owns 313 career treys. He also ranks fourth in CU history with 44.3 percent marksmanship from downtown. For his career, Wragge has attempted 707-of-760 shots from beyond the arc.
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 9-for-12 from the field and 20-for-24 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 also rallied to win at Butler on Jan. 20 after trailing in the final minute. 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.
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.”
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, then overcame another 13-point deficit to beat Xavier on Jan. 12th. It was the 10th and 11th times 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, CU is 88-5 under McDermott when putting together double-digit leads, including wins 76 of the last 77 times. 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 13 Xavier 01/12/14 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
@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 1,800 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.
20-20-20-20-20-20 Vision Doug McDermott opened his senior season with 20 points vs. Alcorn State, 37 points vs. UMKC, 20 points at Saint Joseph’s, 33 points vs. Tulsa, 27 points vs. Arizona State and 30 points vs. San Diego State. In the process, he became the first Bluejay to start a season with at least five consecutive games of 20 or more points since Bob Portman opened with five straight games in 1968-69.
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.
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 NCAA Rank ‘13-14 FG Percentage .487 1st .499 3FG Percentage .401 2nd .425 Assists 1,793 4th 460 Assists/Game 16.30 5th 18.2 3FG Made 874 6th 271 Assist/Turnover Ratio 1.34 10th 1.81 FG Made 2,852 13th 726 Wins 80 T-16th 22 Winning Pct. .727 26th .846
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.
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 Nov. 23rd when he got the nod following a 33 point, 15 rebound showing in a 82-72 triumph vs. Tulsa. McDermott earned his third BIG EAST honor on Dec. 9 after averaging 27.0 points and 6.0 rebounds in lopsided wins over Long Beach State and Nebraska. Including his seven MVC Newcomer of the Week honors in 2010-11, 13 MVC Player of the Week honors from 2011-13, and seven BIG EAST Player of the Week accolades of 2013-14, McDermott has now won at least one conference weekly award from the MVC or BIG EAST in 27 of 63 weeks since enrolling at Creighton.
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.
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.
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.
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 647 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 671 straight games since a 59-53 loss at Illinois State on Feb. 20, 1993.
CenturyLink Center Omaha Success Creighton has played 184 regular and postseason contests at CenturyLink Center Omaha all-time in 11 seasons at the facility. The Bluejays own an 159-25 (.864) record all-time at the facility, and have never lost there on a Thursday (7-0) or Friday (8-0). Creighton has outscored its opponents 13,897-11,743 in games at CenturyLink Center Omaha, an average margin of 11.71 points per game. Creighton has led wire-to-wire 48 different times, including five times last season and the Nebraska, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, California, Chicago State, Marquette, Butler and St. John’s games this year. Creighton is also 23-15 all-time in the 38 games at CLCO in which it’s fallen behind by double-figures.
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).
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.
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 63 times during his career, and Creighton is 50-3 in those contests (10 times he’s scored 15 or more in both halves). McDermott owns 15 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 an MVC-high (and second-most nationally) 801 as a sophomore. McDermott, Oscar Robertson and Larry Bird are the only three players 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.
What A Start! Greg McDermott is 102-34 on the Creighton sideline early in his fourth year at the helm. The 102 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. 102-34 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
Rasmussen Joins 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.
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 78-0 when scoring 75 points or more at CenturyLink Center Omaha. In other words, Creighton is a perfect 90-0 in CenturyLink Center Omaha since Feb. 6, 2005 when scoring enough points to earn its fans some free pizza.
Home Run Since Greg McDermott took over four years ago, Creighton is averaging 79.42 points per home game (5,480 points in 69 home games). That’s a vital number since Creighton is 104-0 at home (75-0 at CenturyLink Center Omaha) when scoring 78 points or more and 86-0 at home (59-0 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.
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.
MBB: Creighton vs. North Carolina Central Highlights (11/23/14)
MBB: Creighton vs. Oklahoma Highlights (11/19/14)
MBB Chicago State at Creighton Highlights (11/16/14)