The only subway in Omaha serves lunch. But so far, this looks like a Big East town.
It's early. But after four games, the reviews say the Creighton show will play on Broadway.
Was there any doubt? Depends on who you ask. But whether they would admit it, even the hard-core blue and white loyalists had to wonder how their team would hold up once the realignment confetti was swept up and the big boy teams started coming every other night.
What would this team recruited to win in the Missouri Valley Conference do once the logo was changed to Big East?
How would this team of mad bombers do in a league of length and girth and quickness, without a shot-blocking tree to guard the middle?
And how would Doug McDermott, the player-of-the-year next door, do against teams with the size and determination to drape themselves over him and pound away for 40 minutes?
They wear this Big East thing well.
It's only four games. It's early. That's what you'll hear for a while. You'll hear it after Butler comes in and the Jays go to Philly for Villanova next Monday and then Georgetown and so on.
But Creighton looks like it fits in this league, and there's no reason to think that should change anytime soon.
That's your first-place Creighton Bluejays, tied atop the Big East with Villanova after two weeks of league play. CU won a wild 95-89 game against Xavier on Sunday.
It was the way the Bluejays won this early first-place battle that stuffed a sock in the skeptics who said these Valley boys would be overmatched.
Could they hold their own in the Big East paint? Yes. McDermott, Ethan Wragge and Will Artino took turns leaning on and double-teaming Xavier's Matt Stainbrook. The big guy had 15 points and 11 boards, but Xavier's size advantage wasn't what it could have been.
In fact, CU had 34 rebounds to Xavier's 35. In four games, the finesse Jays have outrebounded their Big East opponents 149-130.
Could the high-octane CU offense handle Big East quicksand? Yup. They're averaging 80.5 points in four league games, shooting 47.1 percent from the field and 43.2 from 3-point range.
Wragge is still Wragge. If anything, he's stepped back a little farther for Big East play. He's almost showing off now. Wragge's early second-half display had the NBA scouts on press row, including Bulls executive John Paxson, giggling and shaking their heads.
Xavier coach Chris Mack was equally impressed. After the game, Mack marveled at CU's offensive efficiency and trying to guard front-court types like McDermott and Wragge from never-never land.
“Nobody's guarding that,” Mack said of Wragge.
It sounded a lot like what Valley coaches said in that room the last few years.
Speaking of sound, the Creighton crowd has also raised its game for the occasion this season. The blue and white has been that loud for a big Valley game in the past. But two home games in, they're shattering records and eardrums.
“Incredible basketball game,” Mack said. “I don't know if this is what they had in mind when they put this league together ...”
Notice how CU ran its offense without its senior technician, Grant Gibbs. How Avery Dingman (four assists) and Artino (eight rebounds), a couple of Midwest kids recruited to play in the Valley, stepped up.
Butler's on deck. Then Villanova and Georgetown. These teams that would have been dream games in past years keep coming one after another.
The way Creighton's playing is the best part.
“It's early. There's a long way to go,” said coach Greg McDermott. “But we've done a good job of going one game at a time and doing what we do.
“Did I expect this? I don't know. But we've played well against BCS teams. Wichita went to the Final Four last year, and we beat them twice the last week of the season.”
This is the part where we say it helps to have a McDermott in the lineup. But even the skeptics asked: What will he do when the big boys try to take his lunch money every game?
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Hasn't happened. Probably won't. DePaul roughed up his shoulder. He took a couple of days off. Then he dropped 35 points (with four 3-pointers) and seven rebounds on the X-men.
This should be no surprise. McDermott is an elite level player. He brings it every night. If anything, the move to the Big East should enhance his standing as the best player in college hoops.
Don't look now, but the best player in the country has a gleam in his eye and a bounce in his step. Extra bounce, that is.
“It's been a lot of what I expected,” McDermott said. “But it's been a lot of fun. Every team is new. Every game is a new challenge. It's been a blast so far.
“It makes practice a lot more fun, getting ready for new opponents. The last few years, you knew you were going to have to stop Colt Ryan (Evansville) coming off a screen. It was kind of boring.”
Winning is fun. Funny thing, that's true in any league.
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Video: Highlights from Creighton's win over Xavier
Video: Postgame press conference with Greg and Doug McDermott