Revisiting Our Bold Predictions: Hit and Misses from Preseason Predictions

In November of 2021, The Crier and I decided to make a few bold predictions on the season ahead (https://theprovidencecrier.com/2021/11/05/hot-takes-bold-predictions-ahead-of-the-2021-2022-season/). While we were certainly bullish on the Friars relative to national perception, I don’t think either of us could have predicted the season that just transpired. It’s fun to look back and see where our preseason expectations landed relative to how the season unfolded.

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Friars Book Ticket to Sweet 16 – Providence Dominates Richmond 79-51 to Advance to Second Weekend

The narrative around the Providence team all season has been about how their performance defies metrics, insinuating a sense of luck. The underlying message here from the national media is that this luck would run out come tournament time. Well, there was nothing lucky about this game. Providence led from start to finish. The game was never in doubt, and these Friars continue to make the analytically minded folks look quite foolish.

Below, we detail what Providence did to limit the Richmond Spiders, along with some themes to carry over heading into the game against Kansas.

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Providence – Richmond Preview: Friars Look to Advance to Sweet 16

Providence took down the South Dakota State Jackrabbits on Thursday (https://theprovidencecrier.com/2022/03/17/survive-and-advance-providence-friars-beat-south-dakota-state-jackrabbits-66-57-in-1st-round-of-ncaa-tournament/) and are facing off Saturday at 6:10 PM EST against the A-10’s Richmond Spiders. The Spiders upset the Iowa Hawkeyes in the first round, matching the 12 seed Spiders against the 4 seed Friars.

We give an overview of this Richmond squad and what the Friars need to do to emerge victorious and head to Chicago for the Sweet 16.

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Survive and Advance: Providence Friars beat South Dakota State Jackrabbits 66-57 in 1st Round of NCAA Tournament

The 4 seed Providence Friars seemed to be the trendy pick to be upset in the first round against the Summit League champion South Dakota State Jackrabbits. Instead, the Providence Friars did what they have done all season by mucking up the game, slowing down the pace, and frustrating the Jackrabbits enough to hold them off.

We break down the game below, detailing how the Friars were able to advance to the Round of 32.

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Performing A Deep Dive Analysis on the South Dakota State Jackrabbits

Providence, the 4 seed in the Midwest region, is taking on the 13 seed Jackrabbits of South Dakota State. The Jackrabbits finished the year 30-4 and 18-0 in the Summit Conference and are known best for their deep ball shooting ability. As one loyal follower of the Jackrabbits said, “They are essentially the Villanova of the Summit League in how they play offensively”.

Below, we give a breakdown of what you need to know about the Jackrabbits ahead of Thursday’s afternoon match-up.

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The Bottom Fell Out: Providence Gets Walloped by Creighton 85-58

Everything that could go wrong did go wrong. Providence played terribly while Creighton played magnificent. Heading into this game, most Friar fans felt very confident (including yours truly) that they’d win this game in a rather comfortable fashion. Instead, a combination of poor shooting and subpar defense, on top of an excellent performance from Creighton, led to the Friars being run out of the gym.

We break down what went wrong and what Providence needs to adjust heading into the NCAA Tournament.

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Providence – Creighton Semifinal Preview

Providence, fresh off a nail-biter against Butler, is playing the Creighton Bluejays in the first of two semifinal games at Madison Square Garden. Providence, at the time of this writing, is only favored by 3 points. Given how the Friars have performed all season, I expect another game that will be decided in the final seconds.

We preview the game below and how the Friars can emerge victorious in this game.

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Survive & Advance: Providence Beats Butler in the Big East Quarterfinals 65-61

It is March. In this month, it is all about winning. Optics and beauty points no longer matter, and I think that suits Providence just fine. PC was able to hold off the Butler Bulldogs and are now playing this evening against the Creighton Bluejays.

We break down some interesting talking points about how the Friars were able to avoid an upset and why this game was so close.

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Providence – Butler: Round 3 – Big East Tournament Preview

Butler opened up the 2022 Big East Tournament by upsetting Xavier in overtime 89-82. With this win, Butler likely eliminates Xavier from the NCAA Tournament. Providence has defeated Butler twice this season (69-62 and 71-70), and I anticipate the third will be another good one in The Big Apple.

We break down the keys to victory in Madison Square Garden below:

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