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Friday, February 10, 2006

BIG EAST GAME PREVIEW: Connecticut @ Seton Hall

February 11, 2006

The Seton Hall Pirates, winners of six straight games, including five Big East games, suddenly find themselves talking about the NCAA Tournament, let alone doubting they would be good enough for the Big East tournament, get their biggest test yet as the 1st place Connecticut Huskies come to the Meadowlands. Seton Hall begins a three-game homestand against Connecticut, West Virginia and Notre Dame. Finding a way to win at least one of these games will go a long way in legitimizing their bid to be one of the teams representing the Big East in the NCAA's come March.

For Connecticut, they find themselves in a 3-way tie for 1st place in the conference with Villanova and West Virginia and have a Big Monday date with Villanova shortly after this one. Coming on the heels of their Rivalry Week match-up with Syracuse, could there be a letdown for Jim Calhoun's bunch?

For our the rest of our preview and prediction on the game, click below!


This probably is not the best match-up for Seton Hall. Connecticut is deeper, more athletic and just as strong inside. However, Seton Hall has been getting it done of late, including their surprisingly easy win at NC St, but this is the biggest test of them all, meeting UConn.

During the Seton Hall run, they have been getting pretty solid performances nearly every night out from Donald Copeland, Jamar Nutter and Kelly Whitney. On most nights, all three have been very productive and if not, usually tow of them are on the top of their game. They will need all three to be on top of their game on Saturday, and that still could leave them in trouble if they do not control the talent on the other side.

Rudy Gay has really stepped up of late and has begun to look, more consistently, like the player the coaches tabbed as the pre-season conference player of the year. Along with Gay, Josh Boone has begun to find his offense and, with an off game against Syracuse, you can expect Rashad Anderson to be on in this one. However, the talent doesn't stop there as Hilton Armstrong, Jeff Adrien and Denham Brown are all capable of piling up points and rebounds and anything else the Huskies need.

Sometimes I think they Huskies can get a little lax on defense and if they are looking ahead just a little bit, that could happen here. However, with Villanova around the corner, I expect Jim Calhoun to be very demanding of his team in this one. That could lead to mass substitutions that can hurt their flow, but in the end, he will get the effort he is looking for, especially on defense and on the boards.

NBE Blogger prediction:

Connecticut 71 Seton Hall 59


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