Marquette Golden Eagles
Current 2009 Record: 17-2
Record Last Year after 19 Games: 15-4
2009 Preseason Ranking: 16 AP 17 ESPN
Week 11 Ranking: 8 AP, 8 ESPN
12/06/08 No. 22 Wisconsin
01/01/09 No. 13 Villanova
01/10/09 No. 22 West Virginia
01/26/09 at No. 22 Notre Dame
The relatively unknown coach who took over the Marquette basketball program from Hoosier coach Tom Crean following his departure to Indiana is finding himself becoming more and more popular with every Golden Eagle win.
He currently has the Golden Eagles sitting atop the Big East standings at 7-0 and 18-2 overall. That includes four wins against ranked teams, and their only two losses were against No. 19-ranked Tennessee at Tennessee and a decent Dayton team, who has been on the fringe of the rankings all year long.
You have to give extra props to Coach Williams because he is not only succeeding in his first year, but also is succeeding in the mammoth Big East.
Statistically, the Golden Eagles have improved in many categories compared to last year. Here is a rundown of last year's stats compared to this year.
Assists 14.7 assists 16.0 assists +1.3
Turnovers 12.9 turnovers 12.0 turnovers +.9 less
A/TO Ratio 1.1/1 1.3/1 +.2/1
PF 20.9 18.6 +2.3 less
FG% .446 .467 +.021
FT% .706 .716 +.010
3Pt% .353 .361 +.008
Granted, Marquette is returning most of their same players from last year, but there is still no doubt in my mind that Buzz can coach. He has shown that he can recruit as well, bringing in a top 20 recruiting class for 2009 according to ESPN.com.
Up until this point in the season, Buzz Williams should definitely be considered for Coach of the Year.