This week is a very challenging week for our basketball program as we leave the Liacouras Center to take on two of the top teams in the Atlantic 10 Conference, Saint Joseph’s and Duquesne.
Overall, winning on the road in the Atlantic 10 is a difficult proposition. Those teams that are able to win on the road separate themselves from the rest of the field. Right now, St. Joe’s has done a terrific job on the road in the league and that is why they are currently in first place in the conference.
While we do not have to leave the city to play St. Joe’s, we are going to their home away from home, the Palestra. We certainly know the confines of the Palestra, so it is not like another away court. It will, however, be a road game in terms of atmosphere as most of the fans will be for St. Joe’s. We certainly understand and respect that.
Then going to Duquesne will be a tough challenge. They proved that they belong among the top teams in the league, and have a strong homecourt advantage when they defeated Xavier in the Palumbo Center last weekend. Again that underscored how difficult it is to win on the road in the Atlantic 10.
Every game from here on out is critical. We have eight games left in the league and if we are going to finish anywhere near where we finished last year we are going to have to take care of our home games while splitting on the road any way that we can. That is the formula for success.