Pregame: Providence College vs. The University of St. John’s

Posted: January 2, 2010 in Pregame
Tags: , , , ,

Opponent: The University of St. John’s Red Storm / Est. 1870 / Jamaica Queens, NY / Enrollment(UG): 15,000 / BIGEAST

All-time Series: Friars- 41  |   Red Storm- 55

Location: Carnesecca Arena [6,008] Jamaica Queens, NY

Date: Sunday January, 3

Time: 5:30 pm

Coverage: New England: TV– Cox / Radio– WEEI 103.7FM  ||  New York- TV– SNY  ||  Internet– ESPN 360

Preview: The Friars (8-5, 0-1) will head down to Queens, New York to take on The University of St. John’s Red Storm (10-3, 0-1) Sunday evening.  This will mark the 97th meeting of the two teams with St. John’s holding the 41-55 series lead.  The Red Storm are coming off of a tough BIG EAST opening loss at Georgetown.  St. John’s returns just about everybody from last years team and the experience has been showing.  They were able to play Georgetown and Duke tight and picked up a win over a very good Temple team.  St. John’s has been led in the scoring D.J. Kennedy the G-F junior is putting up over 16 ppg.  Dwight Hardy is the only other Johnnie putting up a scoring average in the double digits, but the rest of the team gives decent support.  Like their scoring, rebounding, is more of a consistent team effort.  St. John’s looks to use pressure defense to turn into quick scoring offense.  They are an athletic team who will play defense.  Providence comes into the contest also having lost their BIG EAST home opener on the road.

PFB Perspective: We are excited for this game for a couple of reasons.  First, is because we will be there.  It is a rare opportunity to get to see the Friars away from the Dunk, and it is always interesting to be a visiting fan, so we had to go.  That said we will try to get up some pictures from the game, and hopefully there are a good amount of PC fans who come out for the game.  Second, we feel that this is a game, if we play like we can, that we can win.  And a BIG EAST road win is very hard to come by so that would be nice.  Plus, it would be nice to start off the decade with a win.  Last, we are honestly interested to see St. John’s play.  For us at least, there are those BIG EAST teams that you hate and than those that you find yourself rooting for (as long as it doesn’t effect Providence in any negative way of course).  St. John’s is one of those teams we catch ourselves rooting for.  A team that once was a top program in the country who has fallen on hard times.  And although they are by no means back to their Chris Mullen days, or more recently their Anthony Glover days they are showing signs of life down in Queens and as fans of a team who has seen better days as well, it is interesting to see St. John’s attempting to begin their climb back to relevance.  But make no doubt about it, we will be in Carnesecca Arena wearing our black and white feeling as if St. John’s was our worst enemy.  Now onto the game…

We have been able to watch the Johnnie’s a few times this year including their loss to Georgetown the other night.  They did let Cornell steal one from them at the Garden, but otherwise, have looked good this year.  They had a tough loss to Duke and an even tougher loss to Georgetown.  In watching the team a few times this year, this is what we can say about them…  They are not the St. John’s of the last few years.  It isn’t like they are going to be competing for the BE Title, but they are not a bottom dweller this year.  In some regards they remind us of PC last year in that they are an experienced team that has the potential to finish in the top half of the conference and will knock off some good teams, and will probably have some bad losses along the way as well.  But they are much improved from last year.  They also are athletic.  They like to run, and they can play above the rim.  The Red Storm use their bench and can get production from them.  The St. John’s bench outscored the Georgetown bench 33 to 0.

Like we said before this is a winnable game for PC, which is not something we can say with great frequency this year.  St. John’s is off to a great start, so a win over them on their home court would be nice pick-up.  They like to use the bench and get up and down the floor… so do we.  Where they have the advantage is defense though.  Their D can be very good at times while ours is… well you all know how it is.  A balanced offensive attack is necessary.  They are capable of really locking down on a player, so we will need everybody to get into the mix.  That especially means Marshon.  And we can’t have Sharaud only starting to heat up with three minutes left to go in the game either.  We also need good ball control.  Sharaud and VC, and whoever else is handling the ball, has to keep their poise and stay in control.  St. John’s gets their hands in the passing lanes and will come away with some steals.  And they will bring some pressure.

It should be an interesting game.  Looking at the stat line the teams appear closely matched.  Obviously St. John’s has played some tougher games, and has much more experience, but it is definitely a potential win.  Hopefully we clean up on the glass, and others, besides Greedy Peterson come out ready to play.  This would be a nice game for Marshon to shake off whatever it is that is holding him back, and we hope Vincent Council gets himself back on track now that he has gotten his first BIG EAST game out of the way.

Links:

Friars.com

Men’s Basketball Game Notes vs. St. John’s

ProJo.com

Friarblog

The State of Friars Basketball

RedStormSports.com

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