Marquette's run ends, but senior stars show worth

By Chris Jenkins

Associated Press

Published: Friday, March 23 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

Marquette's Darius Johnson-Odom (1) walks off the court after his team went down to Florida 68-58 in a NCAA tournament West Regional semifinal college basketball game Thursday, March 22, 2012, in Phoenix.

Chris Carlson, Associated Press

MILWAUKEE — It's hard to imagine that anybody would have pointed to Jae Crowder or Darius Johnson-Odom four years ago as the types of players that a major college basketball program would lean on during its run to the regional semifinals of the NCAA tournament.

Marquette bowed out with a 68-58 loss to Florida on Thursday night, a disappointing end to an impressive season led by a pair of players with humble roots. Crowder became the Big East player of the year and fellow senior Johnson-Odom was just as important to the Golden Eagles. Both came to Marquette as junior college transfers.

Marquette coach Buzz Williams comes from similar humble roots, but now may attract another wave of interest from other programs. Williams signed a new contract with Marquette a year ago.

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