No. 22 Creighton boasts deep, experienced team


Last season: 20-15, lost in quarterfinals of NIT.

Nickname: Bluejays.

Coach: Greg McDermott.

Conference: Big East.

Who’s gone: C Geoffrey Groselle, G James Milliken.

Who’s back: G Maurice Watson is preseason All-Big East first team and one of the best scoring playmakers in the country. G Isaiah Zierden is a 38-percent career 3-point shooter. F Cole Huff scored 10 or more points in nine of last 12 games despite playing on a bad knee. C Zach Hanson should be an effective inside presence once he’s fully recovered from summer knee surgery.

Who’s new: G Marcus Foster, who sat out after transferring from Kansas State, should thrive in the up-tempo offense and probably will defend opponent’s best player. C Justin Patton is a 7-footer who added muscle during his redshirt year. G Davion Mintz is in line to back up Watson at the point.

The Skinny: With four seniors and four juniors, McDermott has the deepest and most experienced team since he arrived in 2010. The No. 22 Bluejays, ranked for the first time in two years, are poised to continue climbing in the Big East after finishing sixth in 2016 and ninth in 2015.

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