A couple of undefeated teams square off Tuesday as the Marquette Golden Eagles (2-0) host the Oklahoma State Cowboys (2-0) of the Big 12. The Cowboys have one of the best freshman in the country in Cade Cunningham who's already proven to be the best player on the team. As is the case with non-league games, these two teams haven't played one another in more than a decade. Marquette has some talented newcomers as well, so this should be fun.
Cunningham leads Oklahoma StateThe college basketball world is abuzz about Oklahoma State guard Cade Cunningham. The freshman phenom is projected to be one of the best freshmen in the country, in fact, many are saying Cunningham is likely to be one-and-done and will be a lottery pick in the 2021 NBA Draft. So far, Cunningham has lived up to the hype. In his first two games, Cunningham has averaged 20 points per game. The games were both wins -- over Texas-Arlington 75-68 and Texas Southern 85-65.
Cunningham, a 6'6" combo guard, can slash, shoot, and score off the dribble. He's earned many comparisons, including former Duke star Grant Hill. In the win over Texas Southern on Saturday, Cunningham did a little bit of everything with 20 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocked shots. They also got 19 points out of freshman point guard Rodel Walker. In addition, Oklahoma State got 11 points out of Ferron Flowers, a transfer from California Baptist.
Garcia leads MarquetteThe Marquette Golden Eagles have jumped out to a 2-0 start this season. Like Oklahoma State, they really haven't played anyone yet, but it's good to get the early season wins before the tough Big East starts up. Marquette blew out Arkansas Pine Bluff in the opener 99-57 then pummeled Eastern Illinois 75-50. This will be a good first test for Marquette, a team that is projected to be in the top half of the Big East this season.
Not be outdone by Oklahoma State, the Golden Eagles have a top notch freshman of their own in Dawson Garcia, who is predicted to be one of the best freshmen in the conference. Garcia, a 6'11" center, is already living up to the hype. In the win over Eastern Illinois, he had a team-high 16 points and 8 rebounds. That's after scoring 19 points in the win over Arkansas Pine Bluff. Another promising newcomer is DJ Carton, a transfer from Ohio State, who had 13 points and 7 rebounds in the win over Eastern Illinois. Koby McEwen added 14 points while Justin Lewis added 10 points and 8 rebounds in the win.
Stats & Trends
- Cowboys are 0-1 ATS
- Golden Eagles are 0-1 ATS this season.
Take the Golden Eagles here to cover the spread. These early season games against two seemingly evenly matched teams are always fun because you can learn who are the pretenders and who are the contenders. While Marquette lost one of the best players in the country in Markus Howard, who averaged almost 28 points per game last year, they have re-tooled in a big way and should compete for the Big East title again. What's fun about this game is the matchup of the two freshmen, Cunningham and Garcia. They are both the real deal. I just think that Marquette has more talent around Garcia with the added advantage of being home. They should be able to cover.