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Providence Friars vs. Seton Hall Pirates Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/31/13

Seton Hall Pirates (9-4) at Providence Friars (10-3)

College Basketball: Tuesday, December 31, 2013 at 2:30 pm (Dunkin Donuts Center)

The Line: Providence Friars -5.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: Fox Sports One

Two classic Big East teams keep their rivalry brewing in the new look Big East as the Providence Friars and Seton Hall Pirates square off in conference opener action Tuesday at 2:30PM on Fox Sports one.

Seton Hall moved to 9-4 this past weekend with a convincing 90-58 win over Lafayette.  The win did not come cheap for the Pirates as big man Gene Teague, a key spark for the Pirates as they pulled away in this one, was hospitalized after a late drive resulted in him hitting his head on the floor and being taken off the court on a stretcher.  Teague led the Pirates with 18 and 11 prior to the injury -- his status moving forward is uncertain at this point.  Brandon Mobley added 16 and 11 in this one and the Pirates frontcourt duo won the battle on the glass 51-37.  The win marked two straight for Seton Hall entering conference play.

Providence Friars vs. Seton Hall Pirates Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/31/13

Providence saw their opportunity for a quality road win fall just short this past weekend as the UMass Minuteman got a tip in by Derrick Gordon at the buzzer in OT to drop Providence to 10-3 on the year.  There were numerous lead changes in this one and Bryce Cotton forced OT with two key drives late.  Cotton finished the game with 24 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists.  Tyler Harris added 16, 9 and 5 in arguably his best showing of the year as well.  The Friars did many things well in this one, but were heavily affected by their inability to shoot three balls -- Providence finished just 2-13 from deep while UMass knocked down 6 threes -- many in key spots.  Providence continues to be efficient with the ball, racking up 18 assists to just 11 turnovers against a strong UMass D.

Some trends to consider -- Seton Hall is 10-3 against the spread in their last 13 Tuesday games and Providence is 1-5 against the spread in their last 6 games overall.

These two teams have had a tendency to play close contests in season’s past and while I expect this game to be close from start to finish, the loss of Gene Teague will be very tough to overcome for the Hall as their backcourt play is weaker than Providence and they would have relied heavily in Teague’s ability down low.  Bryce Cotton and the frontcourt combo of Henton and Batts prove to be too much in this one as the Friars make it 1-0 in Big East play with the cover and win at home.


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