MILWAUKEE — When Vander Blue went into Aaron Rodgers’ mode and fired a touchdown pass to Marquette University teammate Junior Cadougan on Saturday, December 8th, the Eagles were golden. The result was a big 60-50 win over the Wisconsin Badgers in their annual in-state rivalry game.
Because of injury and suspension, Cadougan, who is a senior this year, had never experienced beating the Badgers. Cadougan nearly lost his starting job to Derrick Wilson, but the Toronto native rewarded Buzz Williams’ faith by scoring half of his career-high 18 points during a second-half spurt that salted away a win.
Cadougan’s life has been filled with an unbelievable amount of adversity. So much, in fact, that his coach, always guarded when it comes to his players’ personal lives, says Cadougan’s story might come out in a book some day. As a senior, Cadougan has matured both on and off the court, and it’s paying off.
Vander Blue, a junior, came out of Madison amidst much fanfare. He is finally living up to his billing as a “go-to-guy” on the court. Blue, who committed to Wisconsin before having a change of heart, has had his share of struggles away from basketball. His growth into a fine player coincides with growing up as a young man.
Vander Blue and Cadougan’s level of play could help the Golden Eagles to great heights this season, but their growth as individuals has helped them to go beyond the game.