In one of the most intriguing matchups in Big East play thus far, the Butler Bulldogs will travel to Newark to face the Seton Hall Pirates. The Bulldogs had a big home victory against the Xavier Musketeers, while the Pirates eeked out a win against Creighton in Omaha in the final seconds of the game. Here are three things to keep in mind for tonight's contest.
Big East Home Dominance
In the Big East, and college basketball so far this season in general, it's been very tough to win conference games on the road. Just this past weekend we saw Wisconsin and Arizona, both top-5 teams, drop road games to unranked opponents. In the Big East this season, home teams are 13-6. Butler has proven, however, they are capable of going on the road and winning, as they did against St. John's.
Gibbs, who has been a top five player in the conference this season, is someone Butler will need to keep tabs on for the entire game. In the four conference games so far, Gibbs has scored 20+ points in three of them. He's also been great at taking care of the ball, having an assist to turnover ratio of 23:6. He's also been on the court for all but six minutes so far in conference play. It will be interesting to see how he matches up with Butler's Alex Barlow, a very good defensive point guard.
Just as Butler needs to be aware of where Gibbs is, Seton Hall must remain aware of where Butler's Jack-of-all-trades, Roosevelt Jones, is at all times. Jones is one of only three players in the conference to be in the top 20 of scoring, rebounding, and assists (Marquette's Juan Anderson and Providence's Kris Dunn are the other two), and, like Gibbs, he plays a ton of minutes.