Saturday, January 03, 2009


January 3, 2009

The Providence Friars got out of the Big East gates quickly under new head coach Keno Davis with a 21-point win over the undermanned St. John’s Redstorm. PC will look to go 2-0 in conference play when they host DePaul on Saturday night.

The Blue Demons hope to avoid an 0-2 conference start as they dropped their opener in conference play to Notre Dame on Wednesday at Allstate Arena 92-82. Mac Koshwal had 26 and Dar Tucker 24 in the loss, but DePaul continues to lack help for their two big scorers.

Here are some pregame stories and previews found on the web:

Davis Comfortable Redshirting Two for Rest of Season (Providence Journal)
Jabari Currie Giving DePaul Third Scoring Option (Chicago Tribune)
The Providence X-Factor

Coming into the season, Providence was regarded as a conference darkhorse to be in you March Madness betting pool when all was said and done this season. The pre-conference schedule did not really help PC out a whole lot as they missed their opportunities to collect any wins that would stand out on a NCAA Tournament resume. However, if they can start out 2-0 in the Big East and begin building some confidence and getting more comfortable in what coach Davis and his staff are looking for, PC can still make a run.

They have an experienced point guard in Sharaud Curry who looks to be rounding back into form after missing all but 8 minutes last season. They have some dangerous perimeter shooters in Brian McKenzie and Jeff Xavier and dangerous wings in Marshon Brooks and Weyinmi Efejuku. PC still needs to be tougher inside, although Geoff McDermott will battle anyone, with Randall Hanke and Jonathan Kale playing both ends of the floor in the paint. There are some pieces…we expect some better wins soon from the Friars.

For now, they need to settle for beating the teams they should beat. And the Blue Demons are such a squad. Whiel Mac Koshwal and Dar Tucker are impressive individual talents, Jerry Wainwright still has not found a way to maximize their talents to make the rest of the team better and produce better results on the court, especially in the Big East. Tucker and Koshwal might be able to carry their team to a win on occasion, but in the Big East, that is a tall, tall order.

The Friars are a 10.5–point favorite to go 2-0 in Big East play…they should come out on top in this one.


Providence 76
DePaul 67



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