01 December 2009

Countdown to NU @ NC State (ACC-B10 Challenge)

Carmody Court is back in the saddle, but we are still playing catch-up from the long Holiday weekend so no full scouting report for tonight's game down in Raleigh against the NC State Wolfpack. This game is part of the ACC-B10 "Challenge." The B10 has yet to win this thing in ten tries, and the pundits have pointed to this being the year that the B10 finally breaks the ACC's relentless grip in this fun series. For some good background on tonight's game, check out:

NU Official Athletic Website
Welsh-Ryan Ramblings
Chicago College Basketball
Daily Herald
Purple Reign (Scout.com)
Lake The Posts

Brief Recap of and Thoughts on This Past Week:

NU is riding high coming into game after raising some eyebrows on the way to the Chicago Invitational Challenge title this past weekend. NU took care of business in the first couple of rounds against Tennessee Tech and Liberty earlier in the week and then knocked off then-#23 Notre Dame in the semis and an undefeated and gamely Iowa State squad in the finals. John Shurna earned tourney MVP after showing off the improvement that we had heard about from insiders to the program. Keep it up, John!

Another key to NU's success has been the emergence of Alex Marcotullio. The kid is shooting a torrid 52% from distance and has also demonstrated a high "basketball IQ" in nearly all other facets of the game. NU fans are falling all over themselves for Alex. Hopefully fans will remember he is just a frosh if and when his shooting numbers come back to earth.

Carmody Court is warming up to the idea of a starting lineup of Juice, Marcotullio, Crawford, Shurna, and Mirkovic. Marcotullio has yet to crack the starting lineup, but it would only be a matter of time until he gets there if his play continues at or near its current high level. Crawford oozes potential that is not a long way off from breaking through, and we think NU should just go through the growing pains now and reap those benefits come conference time. Mirkovic has struggled a bit, but Carmody Court still thinks he deserves the bulk of the minutes in the middle.