Atlantic 10 This Week
Wednesday: vs. Penn, 7
Saturday: at Massachusetts, 4
Wednesday: vs. Duquesne, 7 (Palestra)
Saturday: vs. Penn, 7 (Palestra) (CN8)
Thursday: vs. Saint Louis, 8
Saturday: vs. Charlotte, 6
GAME OF THE WEEK: Xavier at St. Bonaventure, Wednesday, 7. Long the doormat of the conference, the Bonnies are off to a great start this season. Nothing would boost the program’s morale more than a win over the conference big boy.
PLAYER TO WATCH: You don’t have to look very far for Temple’s Dionte Christmas. All he did this past week was torch La Salle for 30 and average 27 in three games. He garnered the conference’s player of the week honor yesterday for the 10th time in his career. Only David West (14) and Jameer Nelson (13) have collected more. His game, though, isn’t only about scoring. He might be the best all-around player in the city and the conference. The Owls are home twice this week. If you get a chance, go out and see him. It will be well worth the price of admission.
BY THE NUMBERS: Things are going pretty badly for George Washington. Wednesday signified just how much coach Karl Hobbs’ team is struggling. The Colonials shot 30-for-47 (63.8 percent) from the floor, including 8-for-10 from beyond the arc. Yet, they still lost, 88-83, at Duquesne. How? Well, GW gave up 54 second-half points and lost a 10-point lead in the final 7 minutes, 8 seconds. George Washington has now lost seven in a row.
SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW: Dayton is 6-0 this season in games that have been decided by five or fewer points. They have won 13 games in a row at home, dating back to last season. Also, the Flyers are 35-4 under coach Brian Gregory when they score at least 75 points.
ETC: When Rhode Island junior guard Keith Cothran scores 15 or more points, the team is 14-0 ... In each of its 17 games this season, Duquesne has attempted at least 20 threes ... St. Bonaventure is 7-0 in away games this season, for the first time in the program’s history. It is its highest road win total since the 2001-02 season ...The Bonnies’ Andrew Nicholson leads all freshmen in the nation in blocks (54) and field-goal percentage (.628).
Big East This Week
Wednesday: at Connecticut, 7 (ESPN)
Saturday: at South Florida, noon (WPHL)
GAMES OF THE WEEK: As usual, it’s a plural. Tonight, you have Syracuse at previously No. 1 Pitt, which, of course, is coming off its first loss (at Louisville on Saturday). On Saturday, Connecticut is at Notre Dame, where the Fighting Irish haven’t lost in quite some time. And on Sunday, Louisville goes to Syracuse. Louisville and Marquette are the only remaining unbeatens in conference play.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Connecticut’s latest guard from New York City (following Taliek Brown and Ben Gordon, who played for the 2004 national champions), freshman Kemba Walker, had 21 points in Thursday’s 12-point win over St. John’s at Madison Square Garden. He shot 8-for-12, to go with five rebounds and four assists. He’d played there three times for Rice High School in the Bronx.
BY THE NUMBERS: There are only two teams that have losing records (8-10 DePaul and 6-11 South Florida). Meanwhile, two (Pitt and UConn) have one loss. And two have two (Marquette, Syracuse). Two others have three (Villanova, Louisville), and still two more have four (Georgetown, West Virginia).
SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW: Staten Island native Kyle McAlaney lists former Syracuse guard Gerry McNamara as one of his idols. The Notre Dame senior will play for the first and only time at the Carrier Dome tonight. He was serving a suspension in the spring of 2007 when the Irish scored 103 there, a record for a visiting team.
ETC.: Saturday at Providence, Jonathan Xavier, the brother of Friar guard Jeff, climbed over the PU bench and made his way to the middle of the lane to confront a Marquette player he believed had injured Jeff on a prior play. As a Marquette player was shooting free throws. He was escorted off the court by security without incident and charged with disorderly conduct.