Going up against a legend isn't easy, especially when that legend has a lot of help on his side.
Doug McDermott scored 30 points and grabbed 12 rebounds as Creighton survived a challenge from Louisiana-Lafayette on Friday afternoon, 76-66. But Dougie didn't do it himself. He needed timely contributions from the rest of the Jays, a common theme that gets lost in the paeans to the great Creighton star.
Ethan Wragge had two big threes down the stretch as Louisiana was threatening, and Austin Chatan finished off a strong shooting day of his own, with 16 points and six assists in the win.
And really the problem was that the Ragin' Cajuns didn't have enough defense to counter the Jays for 40 minutes. There was no one to truly backup Shawn Long when the Louisiana big man went to the bench with foul trouble after two quick whistles to begin the second half.
He grabbed his fourth five minutes later and Louisiana had to try to replicate the force of the sophomore in the middle with J.J. Davenport. The stout center has the size to bang, but not the arms to swat away the shot of the likes of McDermott.
Elfrid Payton attempted to make up the difference with a surge on offense, and the Cajuns did briefly regain the advantage in the second half. But outside of Payton and Long, the baskets were few. The rest of the team shot just 30 percent from the floor.
The Louisiana point guard finished with 24 points, eight rebounds and three assists to go with three steals and two blocks in the loss. Long had 15, seven rebounds and two blocks.
But some days, there is little you can do, especially when a player on the other side can do what he pleases with the ball. McDermott is now averaging 31.1 points over his last 10 games, which means that Louisiana actually did better than most teams at slowing down the senior star.
It just wasn't enough.