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1954-55

54-55basketballteam_sm.jpg Record: 24-3
Postseason: NCAA Tournament Elite 8
Coach: Jack Nagle
Captains: Rube Schulz and Russ Wittberger
Leading Scorer: Terry Rand (15.9 ppg)
Leading Rebounder: Terry Rand (14.7 rpg)

Season review

Marquette's 1954-55 Wondrous Warriors rode the crest of one of the nation's longest victory streaks to heights of basketball success, fame, and glory never before realized by the University.

Losing only their opening and final games of the regular season, the Warriors distinguished themselves as the greatest team in Marquette history by rolling up a record-breaking total of twenty-two consecutive victories. Two more wins and a loss in the post-season National Collegiate Athletic Association tournament brought Marquette's phenomenal record to twenty-four wins and only three defeats.

Winning the acclaim of sportswriters all over the country, the Warriors were voted the eighth-best team in the nation in the final Associated Press poll and ninth in the final UPI poll of the season. This accomplishment marked the first time that any Marquette team had ever reached the “top ten”.

The starting five of Marquette's history-making team consisted of center Terry Rand, forwards Rube Schulz and Jerry Hopfensperger, and guards Don Bugalski and Bob Walczak. Russ Wittberger, Robert Van Vooren and Pat O'Keefe completed the Warriors' “Big Eight”.

A special tribute was also paid to Coach Jack Nagle when at season's end, he was chosen as the Jesuit College Coach of the Year in a special Associated Press poll.

Although criticized by rival coaches and sportswriters, Coach Nagle and Assistant Coach Bill Knapton defied tradition and devised an unorthodox 1-3-1 offense for the Warriors. This offensive pattern stationed the Warriors' biggest man, six-foot, eight-inch Terry Rand, in the high post position while Schulz roamed under the basket. It resulted in a new all-time scoring record of 2,273 points, topping the old mark of 1,965 points. Marquette averaged 84.2 points per game, an average that still has not been eclipsed more than 50 years later. They also made a record 983 trips to the foul line, knocking down 691 free throws, both records that stand to this day.

Rand, who established an individual scoring record of thirty-seven points against Miami of Ohio, led the Warrior attack with 428 points, an average of 15.8 a game. Schulz was second with 392 points, followed by Bugalski, 340, Wittberger, 262, Walczak, 256, Hopfensperger, 252, and O'Keefe, 161 points.

Schedule and Results

Date Opponent Result Record
12/1/54 at Michigan State L 72-91 0-1
12/4/54 Ripon W 113-56 1-1
12/6/54 Creighton W 96-68 2-1
12/8/54 Saint Norbert W 83-47 3-1
12/15/54 at Michigan W 83-78 4-1
12/18/54 Valparaiso W 78-67 5-1
12/21/54 South Dakota State W 89-67 6-1
12/28/54 San Jose State W 80-68 7-1
12/31/54 #13 Louisville W 66-62 8-1
1/3/55 Drake W 74-71 9-1
1/8/55 Bradley W 97-73 10-1
1/10/55 at Loyola (IL) W 92-77 11-1
1/12/55 at #20 Louisville W 82-48 12-1
1/15/55 Loyola (IL) W 80-67 13-1
1/27/55 at Loyola (LA) W 73-60 14-1
1/28/55 at Loyola (LA) W 90-88 (OT) 15-1
2/5/55 at Drake W 64-60 16-1
2/7/55 at Creighton W 88-77 17-1 Marquette set a school record for free throws made (40) and Rube Schulz set an individual record for free throws made (16)
2/12/55 Bowling Green W 101-56 18-1
2/14/55 Detroit W 100-81 19-1
2/16/55 at Bradley W 93-83 20-1
2/24/55 at Notre Dame W 84-74 21-1
2/26/55 at Valparaiso W 81-68 22-1
3/5/55 Notre Dame L 64-85 22-2
3/9/55 vs Miami (OH) W 90-79 23-2 NCAA Tournament Terry Rand set an individual record for field goals made (16)
3/11/55 vs #2 Kentucky W 79-71 24-2 NCAA Tournament
3/12/55 vs #5 Iowa L 81-86 24-3 NCAA Tournament


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