Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wednesday's Big East Action

Pitt @ West Virginia

Hype:

Not much of a need to hype this one – it’s the hardwood version of the Backyard Brawl in Morgantown. Pitt has been slipping of late after their torrid conference start, but West Virginia hasn’t exactly been blowing teams out of the WVU Coliseum.

Matchup:

Expect a slugfest all over the court. A couple key stats to watch 1) WVU’s offensive rebounding, they are #3 in KenPom’s ratings there, which will be crucial because is very strong in effective FG % defense 2) WVU’s turnovers, Pitt is one of the worst teams in the nation at forcing turnovers defensively.

Prediction:

West Virginia: 70

Pittsburgh: 68

South Florida @ Georgetown

Hype:

South Florida rides into the District with a stunning 3 game winning streak. Considering the Bulls had never won consecutive games in the Big East, this is a huge deal. Georgetown needs to be on upset alert after Saturday’s big win over Duke in front of the Commander in Chief.

Matchup:

Can Georgetown stop Dominique Jones? He’s averaged 37 points in their 3 game winning streak? Can USF stop Austin Freeman? He’s shot over 50% from the field in all Big East game except one. Another interesting matchup will be 6’11” Jarrid Famous against Greg Monroe. USF will stick around for a while, but tired USF legs will lead to some discipline breakdowns on defense and easy Hoya layups.

Prediction:

Georgetown – 78

USF - 69

DePaul @ Marquette

Hype:

Can Marquette exact revenge on DePaul after their embarrassing upset loss to the Blue Demons on January 20th? DePaul has been playing harder, particularly on defense since Tracy Webster replaced Jerry Wainright as head coach.

Matchup:

DePaul’s length and athleticism gave Marquette fits in their last matchup. DePaul engaged MU’s guards the second they crossed the half court line, which slowed down MU’s offense considerably. Offensively, DePaul struggles to score and basically takes the air out of the ball to give themselves the best chance to win. One concern for MU fans has to be Mac Koshwal, DePaul’s inside force. He was hurt for the last game and could have a huge game against MU’s non-existant front line.

Prediction:

Marquette 64

DePaul 58

5 comments:

Mr. Sparkle said...

64 to 58... hopefully this one isn't nearly as exciting as the Big 11-esque game we suffered through in Rosemont. I'd like to see a more convincing MU victory at the BC... the fact that there may actually be people in the upper deck might throw off DePaul's mojo.

EMoney said...

For a Depaul game this is HUGE! Last week's loss was inexcusable. MU has to hold serve at home which gets this team to 0.500 in Big East play before they go on the road. I'd really like to see a blow out here.

Keys to the game:

1. Attack the paint - this team needs to get to the stripe more. Attacking could lead to some early fouls for Koshwal putting him on the bench. Further, I'd like to see this team actually get in the double bonus.

2. Don't play Depaul's game - our guards need to push the ball up the court on misses. Our small lineup should be able to do this when Depaul goes big.

3. Intensity (not the dance group) - MU needs to come out fired up and ready to play. Blow them out from the start! Allowing Depaul to stay in the game only gives them confidence (see last week). I'm also applying this to the home crowd here. I hope you knuckle heads get fired up for this. Pregame cocktails at HTR tend to activate this.

Devil's Threesome said...

I'm fired up, it's a HUGE game for us. I am a bit worried b/c they beat w/o their best player and now he's back. Their length really bothered us the last time. I'm skeptical that we can draw fouls. Acker and Cubes are short and can't finish. DJO is our best threat to penetrate, but he's often out of control. Despite my worries, I think we'll win, it will just be closer than I want.

EMoney said...

Right, the attacking will have to come from DJO, Buycks, Butler and Hayward. Acker and Cubillan can help out by penetrating and dishing down low which many times causes the defense to react late and foul.

Rubie Q said...

Acker needs to nut up and make 4+ threes like he has against every other garbage team in the BEast.