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Providence - Syracuse Preview

Syracuse students agree: It's about time to start the league.
Syracuse beat Providence last season twice by an average of 15.5 points. But obviously that was a different Providence team. That team ended the year 12-19. Providence already has 11 wins this year with their 11-2 record. They have a big star in Marshon Brooks (23.1ppg, 8.9rpg), who is the main scorer for the team. He's hitting 35.5% from behind the arc which is dangerous. Providence is the same team they always were. They shoot a ton of threes, good for second in the league. They are making them at a clip of 31.5% however, which is fourth worse in the league. Syracuse also is defending the three well, limiting opponents to 28.6% from behind the arc. Providence is a classic live by the three, die by the three team. And against Syracuse, with a dominant inside presence, that could be fatal early. Rick Jackson has been a consistent double-double machine this season, and is leading the conference in rebounding with 11.8rpg. Syracuse seems to be doing everything right, shooting the ball better as of late (57.7% over the last four games), and still not turning the ball over that much. But the true battle tonight will be Syracuse's defense and rebounding. If Syracuse limits Providence from getting second chance buckets around the basket and getting more opportunities to recover after a missed three this game will get out of hand in favor of the Orange very quickly. I like the Orange in this game and will take them over the Friars (who's mascot is just a dude) by 17.
Editor's Note: We were going to have more of a fanfare to the start of the Big East by having a big Q&A with David of FriarBlog as we have the past few seasons, but he recently welcomed a brand new baby boy home so we'll forgive him for being distracted and send him Congratulations.

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