MILWAUKEE — With the regular season tipping off in just 19 days, Marquette Men's Basketball held an open practice Wednesday night.
A few hundred fans were in attendance to get an early glimpse at the fifth-ranked Golden Eagles, which featured a mic'd up Shaka Smart who verbally explained certain drills throughout the practice.
On Monday, the reigning Big East champions received its highest preseason ranking since the 1977-78 season at No. 5. The Golden Eagles haven't earned a preseason ranking in a decade, which was the 2013-14 season when Marquette was tabbed at No. 17.
Head coach Shaka Smart spoke to the media after Wednesday night's practice and said the team is continuing to 'stack days' and 'build championship habits.'
"We still have some growth to make," Smart said. "Those championship habits that we want to stack and create over the next 19 days are critical. Even with that being said, on Nov. 6 we're not going to be a finished product. We'll continue to grow and improve from game one to game two."
The reigning Big East Player of the Year Tyler Kolek shared his insight on the preseason and how his team is handling the program's high expectations.
"October is a grind," the senior guard stated. "You're playing against the same guys every day. You're in there for two, three hours. It's a war. You guys saw it today. Just coming in every single day being ready to go, being on ten, and wanting to be there. Not just, yeah I have practice on my schedule... No, it's I get to go after somebody today. I get to get better today, and that's really how we want to approach every single day to continue to take those steps forward to get to where we want to get to."
Marquette tips off the regular season on Nov. 6 against Northern Illinois at Fiserv Forum.
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