Friday, January 04, 2008


January 5, 2008

Both teams coming off very different results will have to put Thursday night's games behind them and re-focus for a Saturday evening tilt that could play a big role in the outcome of their seasons.

Providence wraps up a quick two-game Midwestern road trip with a drive from Milwaukee to Chicago to face the Blue Demons of DePaul. Coming off a complete drubbing at the hands of Marquette, the short-handed Friars will look to rebound against DePaul. After this game, PC has three of their next four at home. The three home games at the Dunkin Donuts Center are very winnable.

DePaul gets to start off conference play with a pair of home games. Entering their conference opener the Blue Demons were on their first two-game winning streak of the season, but were still just a disappointing 4-7 on the year. Facing a ranked opponent at home for the second time this season, DePaul once again saw a double digit late second half lead shrink, but this time, DePaul was able to put away Villanova and earn the win, unlike a previous attempt against Vanderbilt.

With Friars point guard Sharaud Curry still in a protective boot and limited to eight minutes of action all season, and his back-up, Dwain Williams, unlikely to play because of an ankle injury, the Friars were dismantled by Marquette. With shaky guard play and no inside game to speak of, it was a no-win situation for PC and it got real ugly. Now they have to find a way to right the ship in a hurry to avoid a 0-2 conference start.

DePaul also was short-handed in their win over Depaul as Majita Poscic and Jabari Currie did not play because of injury and Dar Tucker was limited to three minutes because of a sore ankle. In the process, Jerry Wainwright might have found a cure to their point guard woes as Cliff Clinkscales played one of th ebetter floor games of a DePaul PG in the last couple seasons, especially when they needed it down the stretch against a good gaurd group from Villanova. If Tucker is ready to go, the Blue Demons match up well with the Friars with their size inside, athletic ability on the wings and a scorer in Draelon Burns to rely on.

With Curry and Williams out, PC will have to rely on the inconsistent Weyinmi Efejuku, but their biggest issue will be trying to find some form of inside game to battle Mac Koshwal and Wesley Green. If they can't, it will be a long night again for PC.

NBE Blogger Prediction: DePaul 69 Providence 65



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