Providence Looks to Stay Atop the Big East and Avoid the Hinkle House of Horrors – PC Butler Preview

Providence, standing at 10-3 and 2-0 in the Big East, starts their Midwest tour with a match-up Thursday against the 8-5 Butler Bulldogs. Butler is currently 0-2 in the Big East after losses to UCONN and Creighton. Below, we preview the match-up and what Providence must do to get another road win in the Big East. We also have the podcast previewing the Butler and DePaul game below.

If Providence can somehow go 2-0 on this road trip, they’ll be in prime position to be nationally ranked ahead of the gargantuan match-up against UConn at the AMP on 1/4. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves though.

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2024 Recruits I’d Like to See Providence Recruit

In the Version 2 of the 2024 Recruiting Primer (https://theprovidencecrier.com/2022/04/08/providence-college-basketball-recruiting-class-of-2024/), we put together a comprehensive list of players that the Providence Friars are recruiting.

In this article, I put together a list of players I’d like Providence to begin recruiting. They aren’t recruits I have seen tied to Providence as of this writing, but I’m hopeful that changes. There’s a rationale behind why each of these players are on this list: playing style, location, need fit, etc.

This isn’t a “wish list”. For instance, I’d love for Providence to land 3 Top 10 nationally ranked players, but that isn’t realistic. I didn’t include every single Top 15 player in the 2024 class. I tried to keep this as level headed as possible.

Without further ado, see below:

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Welcome to the National Stage, Mr. Hopkins – Bryce Hopkins Erupts for 29 and 23 as Providence Stays Atop Big East

There is just something about Marquette and Providence that leads to instant classics. The Bat Game. The Floor Slippage. Blizzard Beach. Jonathan Xavier. This match-up has it all, for better or worse.

Last night lived up to the billing, with Providence doing everything possible to claw back in the game, give it away in overtime, and then recapture the victory in the second stanza of overtime. Providence won 103-98 over #24 Ranked Marquette to improve to 10-3 and 2-0 atop the Big East.

We break down everything from this heart palpitating match-up below.

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Friars Look to Start 2-0 in Conference – Marquette Game Preview

Providence, coming off a gutsy road win against Seton Hall, has a chance for another resume building win when Marquette (also 9-3 on the year) travels to Providence Tuesday night. Marquette is coming off a nice win of their own, a drubbing of the Kalkbrenner-less Blue Jays of Creighton. The winner of this game remains atop the Big East.

We preview the game, what to watch for, and what Providence needs to do to come out on top against the Shaka Smart led squad.

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Providence Starts Off Big East Play with Gutsy Road Win, Defeating Seton Hall 71-67

Providence opened up conference play with a needed road win against the pesky Seton Hall Pirates. Providence was led by the dynamic duo of Ed Croswell and Bryce Hopkins. Hopkins and Croswell accounted for 45 of 71 total points and 19 total rebounds. When Providence needed a basket, they turned to these two. Seton Hall was seemingly a one man show, with Kadary Richmond scoring at will to the tune of 28 points, 9 rebounds, and 5 assists on an efficient 10-16 shooting.

Below, we break down the good (and the bad) from this conference opener.

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PC Begins Big East Title Defense on the Road at Seton Hall

Despite what some of the haters may say (or choose to believe), the Providence Friars are the defending Big East Champs and will begin their title defense Saturday afternoon at Seton Hall. The non-conference slate for the Friars was a mixed bag. The good news is that PC didn’t lose to any opponent that could impair a NCAA Tournament resume; on the flip side the Friars squandered all three chances at resume building wins.

Clearly, the Friars won’t be the favorites to repeat; however, they’re starting to come together as a team and have the talent to be a threat to repeat. Last year was no flash in the pan. In the last two games Providence was able to show what they are capable of. Is this for real or just a cupcake mirage? We will find out Saturday, let’s take a look at the matchup.

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What Questions Remain: Providence Friars

Yesterday, we explored what we’ve learned about this team through non-conference play (https://theprovidencecrier.com/2022/12/14/what-have-we-learned-heading-into-big-east-play-providence-friars/#more-5451). Today, we take an honest assessment of what questions still remain around this Providence program as they head into Big East play.

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What Have We Learned Heading into Big East Play: Providence Friars

Providence is 8-3 with no great wins and no terrible losses. One might say they are status quo heading into Big East play (St. Louis outcome could be argued, but I digress). With the out of conference behind us, we take the time to analyze what we have learned in these 11 games before getting into the meat grinder of the Big East.

If you recall, we rolled out a comprehensive season preview at the start of the season. You can revisit that here (https://theprovidencecrier.com/2022/10/31/the-providence-criers-2022-2023-providence-friar-preview/#more-5165).

We pick back up on some of our predictions from the preseason and detail what we’ve learned from out of conference.

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Around the Big East as Friars Open Up Conference Play

Technically, conference play has already started. St John’s held serve at Carneseca against DePaul a week ago. However, the Friars and the rest of the league gets their first crack this weekend.

Some are saying that it is a tough start for the league this non-conference, and it’s hard to argue. There have been plenty of upsets so far this season but that’s being seen across all major conferences. We think the Big East has potential to have another good season.

So we figured we’d check in with all the other teams to see how they’re doing.

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Providence Ends Non-Conference on High Note, Dominating Albany 93-55

PC wrapped up an anti-climatic out of conference with another dominant win against an inferior opponent. PC held Albany to 55 points on 28% shooting. Six players scored in double figures for the Friars, continuing a theme of balanced offensive outputs that made last year’s Friar squad so dangerous.

We recap the game below as we look towards Big East play.

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