The Friars won a challenging game on the road against Seton Hall, and now they are just one win away from clinching the second seed in the conference tournament. The Friars had a terrible first half. Down by three, Kris Dunn initiated a run that shows how the Friars could be one those unexpected teams to make it a run in this year's NCAA Tournament. Kris Dunn showed why he is projected to be a first round pick in the NBA Draft scoring 17 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists while Ben Bentil had a career-high in points with 21, and went 12-12 from the free throw line. On the other hand, this is Seton Hall's seventh loss over the past eight games and there are a lot of questions surrounding the program. Will head coach Kevin Willard potentially be fired after this season? Could star guard Isaiah Whitehead try his luck in the draft? Seton Hall has been spiraling out of control for a long time now and the concerns for the program are only going to grow after the Big East Tournament.
Here are three things we learned:
LaDontae Henton becomes the second player in Providence history to score 2,000 points and 1,000 Rebounds
Henton has been fighting against the odds his entire life. Growing up in Lansing, Michigan, his brother being sent to prison for murder, and now he has cemented a legacy at Providence that will stay for years to come. 2,000 point scorers don't come around often in college basketball, and now Henton has entered that elite group at Providence College. One of the more underrated aspects of Providence basketball is the alumni, who not only shaped basketball in Rhode Island, but basketball in general. Providence College has alumni like Lenny Wilkins (first person to be in the Basketball Hall of Fame as a player and a coach), John Thompson, who proved to be one of the best coaches of all time, and Marvin Barnes, who led Providence to the Final Four and has one of the most infamous and notorious basketball careers in the history of college basketball. In my opinion, Henton has cemented a legacy that should have his number retired with those famous former Friars. He was Ed Cooley's first recruit, and the player that has brought the Friars out of the Keno Davis days and back into the NCAA top 25. The only other Friar to score 2,000 points and 1,000 Rebounds is Ryan Gomes, who had a nine year NBA career.
Providence can clinch the second seed in the Big East Tournament with a win on Saturday
Although the NCAA Tournament is extremely important, next week is the most important week in the Friars' season. The Friars have the potential to make it deep in the Tournament, but a Big East Championship is more important than going to the Sweet Sixteen. The Big East Championship is the Friars' National Championship, and winning it twice in a row would be a tremendous accomplishment that no Friar fan could have imagined two years ago. A two-seed is very helpful but the Friars need as much confidence as possible before playing at Madison Square Garden. A win against a ranked team at home is exactly what the Friars need.
Seton Hall's Season is Officially Over
I hate to say it, but it looks like Seton Hall basketball is officially over for the rest of the year. I'm still wondering what the hell happened to one of the most talented teams in the Big East. They were ranked in the top 15, and the next thing you know, they're fighting to win games versus Creighton at home. They had all the momentum, and I don't think one person is to blame, but something has to change. Kevin WIllard has allowed the Pirates to spiral out of control, and locker room problems started by the team's two best players is a disease for a program. It's over for the Pirates, but the talk of change in the program have only just begun.