The Drake Bulldogs have played well at home this season and this will be the biggest week of the season in the Knapp Center as they host the two teams tied at the top of the Missouri Valley Conference standings. It begins on on Wednesday night with a game against 15th ranked Creighton.
The Blue Jays won the first matchup in convincing fashion and Drake coach Mark Phelps says the Bulldogs will need a better start this time. Phelps says you can’t afford a bad start against “one of the most prolific offensive teams in the country.” He says you have to consistently score to keep up with Creighton, because they will score no matter how well you play defense.
Creighton sophomore Doug McDermott is third in the country in scoring at just over 23 points per game and he leads a Blue Jay that Phelps says is difficult to guard. Phelps says they have to try and limit the things Creighton tries to do and says they have a lot of options beyond McDermott.
The top scoring duo of Ben Simons and Rayvonte Rice struggled in a Sunday night loss at U.N.I. and Phelps says they will need a big effort against Creighton. He says they didn’t play well against the Panthers, but he believes in them and says they will have more better games than not.
Creighton coach Greg McDermott says the Bulldogs are a better team than the first time they played. “This is a dangerous team, a very talented team, there’s a reason they are tied for third in the league,” McDermott says.
McDermott expects a much tough test this time as he says it will be more difficult to get off to the 11-0 start on the road than it was at home.
Creighton is 18-2 overall. Drake is 12-8.