Friars to Face DePaul: Can They DeStart 2-0?

dave@friarblog —  January 3rd, 2009 4:22 AM
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The Providence Friars (9-4, 1-0) will play their second Big East game on Saturday night when the DePaul Blue Demons (8-6, 0-1) come to the Dunk.  Tip-Off is 7PM.

INFO

Time: 7PM at the Dunk

TV: Cox for the Rhody area, MSG+ for those in NYC area

Online: DePaul’s website says the game is on ESPN360.com

Free Online Radio: None

Friars.com Gametracker

StatSheet.com Pregame

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PREVIEWS ON THE WEB

Friars.com Game notes

The Friars and the Blue Demons have met 24 times in the series, with PC leading, 18-6. Providence has posted a 11-1 mark all-time at home against DePaul, a 6-5 record at DePaul and a 1-0 record on neutral courts against the Blue Demons. The two teams first met on February 16, 1961 when the Friars earned an 81-77 win in Providence. In the Friars’ most recent win, PC defeated DePaul, 79-65, on February 5, 2008 at the Dunk. In DePaul’s most recent win over the Friars, they defeated PC, 70-65, at DePaul’s Allstate Arena on January 5, 2008.

DepaulBlueDemons.com – “Men’s Basketball Goes on the Road to Providence”

Since joining the BIG EAST, the Blue Demons are 1-3 against the Friars with three of the four games between the two teams being decided by five points or less.

BlueDemonsNation.com Preview

The Blue Demons will be looking to get their first Big East victory of the year early, as a win in their second conference game would likely boost the spirits of the Blue Demons after a hard fought effort to narrow the gap against Notre Dame on Wednesday.

BY THE NUMBERS

WHEN PC HAS THE BALL

Providence Offense vs. DePaul Defense

national rankings in ()

50.5 eFG% (130) vs. 52.6 eFG% allowed

105.7 Adjusted Offensive Efficiency (91) vs 99.8 Adjusted Defensive Efficiency

19.5% Turnover % (87) vs. 20.2% Turnover % forced

39.8% Offensive Rebounding % (31) vs 35.6% Off Reb. % against

37.1 FT Rate (144) vs. 22.7 FT Rate against

WHEN DEPAUL HAS DEDAUL

DePaul Offense vs. Providence Defense

national rankings in ()

46.3 eFG% (270) vs. 48.6 eFG% allowed

103.5 Adjusted Offensive Efficiency (118) vs 94.4 Adjusted Defensive Efficiency

17.6% Turnover % (17) vs. 22.6% Turnover % forced

37.2% Offensive Rebounding % (68) vs 32.3% Off Reb. % against

37.7 FT Rate (135) vs. 30.0 FT Rate against

Stats by StatSheet.com

OUTLOOK

The Friars are going to be moderately favored in this home game and deservedly so — DePaul has already racked up 6 losses, despite playing Notre Dame tough at home in their BIG EAST opening loss the other night (score was 92-82).  Dar Tucker is probably going to get his points, but DePaul doesn’t have much going for them offensively (they scored 36 TOTAL POINTS AGAINST NORTHWESTERN) other than sophomore big man Mac Koshwal.

However, there are a few potential problems that might not make this a walk in the park.

1.  Koswhal, a 6-10 center, might cause some matchup problems for Providence down low.  If Hanke wants to have more games like he did against St. John’s, he’s going to have to step up defensively when he comes in the game, and not allow Koswhal to go apeshit.   The more PT Hanke can get, the more we can hopefully see that soft touch inside and screams after dunks.

2.  DePaul has taken excellent care of the ball this season (17th in the nation in Turnover %, plus they only had 8 against ND) — Providence really gets into a groove when they are forcing turnovers and creating havoc.

3.  It’s a BIG EAST game.  Nothing is a walk in the park!

That being said, Providence has a good shot at starting out 2-0 in the BIG EAST.  They just have to pick up where they left off against St. John’s and continue improving their overall play.

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