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Sleeping with the Enemy: The Bluejays of Creighton

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The Fighting Hoyas of Georgetown set sail for Omaha and as usual we here at THE GLOBAL PHENOMENON are bringing you everything you need to know about our next opponent. Here with us to dish on all things Creighton is our buddy White and Blue Review. Let’s do this!

Creighton! Your team looks to be on the mend more or less after scoring a measly 51 points against us a few weeks ago. Have the Jays finally figured out how to play without Maurice Watson Jr.?

It seems like they have figured out how to play without Maurice Watson in most facets except for who the right guy is to play point guard for the Bluejays. They have played three other guys at the position, almost by committee, and based on the way the game is going.

Davion Mintz is a true freshman and really the guy that should be playing most minutes at the point. However, Mintz didn't get as many minutes before Watson's injury as he probably should have and while his leading of the offense is solid, he still has a lot of deficiencies on defense. Fans almost wish that Coach McDermott would just play him in crunch time and get the most minutes and live with those deficiencies so the offense can run similar to it did with Watson at the point.

Tyler Clement is a veteran of the program and probably spends the most time in the gym when the Jays aren't having practice. However, he is a walk-on and expectations are high for him to run this high powered offense. He has had some good games, but it all depends on the opponent. He can shine against the likes of DePaul, but against the Xaviers of the world, isn't athletic enough to handle many minutes there.

Isaiah Zierden has been forced to play more point guard than you would expect, but as a fifth year senior and experience running the point back in high school, the experience factor over the past four seasons makes McDermott the most comfortable to have out there. However, the offense cannot run very fast with Zierden at the point and the opportunities for him to knock down 3's, which is what his job really is, become less.

The Jays are 3-4 since Watson went down. Because of the indecisiveness to stick with a point guard, this is why the record isn't 5-2 or 6-1 which is what it could easily have been.

What sort of problems did you see crop up for Creighton in their last matchup vs. the Hoyas and what adjustments would you expect to see from Greg McDermott for this second showdown between the two teams?

To be real honest, I was so frustrated with the first matchup that I actually shut the game off early in the 2nd half. I have NEVER done that before with a Creighton game. Honestly, Georgetown has had Creighton's number since they joined the league including a completed drubbing in Omaha a couple of seasons ago.

What I did notice is that Creighton needs to be tougher in the post. The inside players for Georgetown just had their way against Justin Patton and crew. However, Creighton didn't have Zach Hanson back. He should help solidify things down low a little bit better. I was wondering why Hanson wasn't in the game more on Wednesday night against Seton Hall when Creighton was getting outrebounded so badly and didn't have much toughness down the stretch.

As for the offense running correctly, Georgetown did a great job double-teaming the point guard in Mintz's first start on the road really disrupting things and no one else could seem to do anything. I would bet there was a lot of practice on dealing with that the past few days.

Those two things will be key to make adjustments for the Jays if they want to win on Sunday.

The Bluejays also seem to be in the thick of a battle for the #2 spot in the Big East with Butler and Xavier. Considering that you own the tiebreaker with Butler, how do you see the rest of the regular season playing out for this team? How likely is it that they lock down the #2 seed for the Big East Tournament?

Creighton just needs to be more consistent. The "mourning" period if passed and everyone needs to step up to win out the remaining games. I could see them losing to Villanova in Philly, but honestly the rest of the schedule is setup for them that they have no excuse to not win the rest. Many Bluejays have made adjustments to their game and it has been noticeable in separate games. They just need it all to click now together the rest of the way.

Many NBA Draft pundits are suggesting that Justin Patton would go in the first round. How likely do you believe this is and does he look NBA-ready to you?

If the game against Seton Hall on Wednesday was any indication, there is still some work to do to overcome the type of player that Delgado is. While Patton has been a great silent leader, he still needs to know when to step it up on the defensive end to grab game changing rebounds and still needs to build some stamina for the NBA game. The 32 minutes he played on Wednesday night I think were too high and he was just gassed down the stretch.

That being said, if he decided to turn pro after this season, it wouldn't suprise me. He has so much talent that I think many didn't expect to see so soon and he could probably develop the rest of the way when moving on to the NBA. However, I think he has to really ask this questions to himself---"Do I want to have another year of fun in college where I am playing every game and dominating opponents a little more, or do I want to sit at the end of an NBA bench developing my game a little more while battling veterans for minutes.?" I think everyone wants him to come back. He has to have the circle of people he completely trusts to make an informed decision. If he has that and they are completely honest with him, that will form his decision.

Other than Creighton, which other college basketball team is the one you most enjoy watching?

I'm really enjoying watching Oregon. Partly because former Creighton coach Dana Altman is there, but also because they have some really dynamic players. I'm trying to decide if Altman changed his game to evolve as a coach or if he has been able to now get the type of recruits that he really wanted while at Creighton and they are playing like he wanted to play. Either way, they have had some great success the past few years with Altman there.

The other team is Kentucky. I grew up a Kentucky fan, but watching them, I see a lot of similarities on how they run up and down the court and do a lot of similar things that Creighton does. With a healthy Watson, I would have really loved to see both of those teams play each other in the NCAA Tournament. I would either see how ignorant I was that Creighton could play with them or I would find I wasn't too far off on how much I think Creighton has improved in their recruiting and use of transfers since joining the Big East.

Omaha is known for its steaks, so please describe your ideal steak, specifying how well you would like it cooked, what sauces or glazes you would like on it, one side dish to go with it, and a specific varietal of wine to wash it down.

I would probably have a nice big ribeye cooked medium. No sauces needed. Baked potato with sour cream and butter. Wine is gross. Just give me a beer and it will be perfect.

The Academy Awards are just one week after Sunday's game. Do you think Casual's favorite "La La Land" takes Best Picture or does a dark horse sneak in and win?

Are you freaking kidding me? No one gives a crap about that. I don't think most people have watched any of those movies anyway. Unless the movies have superheroes and my kids are interested in watching, those are the only movies I see these days.

When you put a roll of toilet paper in its holder, should the toilet paper hang from over the roll or under it?

I prefer it under. Easier to roll out and tear off.

Final score prediction?

I think after Wednesday's debacle, the previous loss at Georgetown, and playing at home, the Jays rebound literally and pull out the "must win" in Omaha 87-71.