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No. 24 Marquette 71, S. Florida 36

January 31, 1997 GMT

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ Seth Greenberg didn’t mince words.

South Florida’s first-year coach was fuming after No. 24 Marquette embarrassed his team 71-36 Wednesday night and promised to re-pay the Golden Eagles.

``Sometimes you’re the dog. Sometimes you’re the tree,″ Greenberg began in a brief post-game statement. ``Tonight, we were the tree. But believe me, we will be the dog some day and we will remember this night ... What goes around, comes around.″

Chris Crawford scored 22 points and Marquette (14-3, 5-1 in Conference USA) shut down Greenberg’s overmatched young team with the nation’s stingiest field goal defense to win for the 12th time in 13 games.

The Golden Eagles shot 53 percent while holding South Florida (6-12, 0-7) to school-record lows for points and field goal percentage (21.8 percent). But what bothered Greenberg most was a timeout Marquette took with 2:33 to go.

The score was 67-33, and the South Florida coach thought the move was unnecessary. Marquette coach Mike Deane countered that reserve John Cliff made a mistake that needed to be addressed.

``Coach Greenberg should be concerned with his own team,″ Deane said. ``We had a freshman player make a mistake. I’m going to coach him the same way I do everybody else. That’s the way we coach. That’s the way we play. I don’t have to apologize. I didn’t shoot 3-for-23 (in the second half). They did.″

South Florida, which suffered its most lopsided home loss ever, missed all 19 of its 3-point attempts. The Bulls went scoreless from the field during one 14-minute stretch in which Marquette broke the game open with a 24-3 run.

The loss was the ninth straight for the Bulls. It’s the second-longest streak of futility in school history, three shy of the team record set during the 1979-80 season.

Marquette scored the first six points of the game and never trailed. The Golden Eagles began the night as the nation’s field-goal defense leader and ranked second in scoring defense at 52.6 points per game.

Crawford paced Marquette’s offense, making all eight of the shots he took. He was 6-for-6 at halftime, and his 17 points nearly matched South Florida’s total for the first 20 minutes.

The Golden Eagles finished the opening half with a 9-0 run to lead 41-19 at the break. South Florida went without a field goal for the last four minutes of the first half and first 10 after intermission.

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Crawford was 4-for-4 from 3-point range and got offensive help from Aaron Hutchins, who scored 10 points.

Dan Luczywko led South Florida, which played without injured leading scorer and rebounder James Harper (back spasms), with nine points. The Bulls were 9-for-32 in the first half and missed 20 of 23 shots from the field after halftime.