No. 15 Seton Hall Pirates (9-1) vs. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (9-3)
WHEN: Noon ET
WHERE: Rutgers Athletic Center, Piscataway, N.J.
TV: Big Ten Network (Kevin Kugler, John Crispin)
LINE: SHU -7.5
SERIES: Pirates lead 39-29
Two former Big East rivals are set to clash on Saturday afternoon when the 15th ranked Seton Hall Pirates head about 40 minutes south to Piscataway to take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights.
The game will be the fourth installment of the Garden State Hardwood Classic, with each of the first three going the Pirates’ way.
The Pirates come into this one winning five straight overall after a beat-down of Saint Peters on Tuesday night. In that game Angel Delgado continued to move up the ranks of the Seton Hall elite, as he now sits third all-time in program history in rebounds.
For the Scarlet Knights, they have already announced a sellout at the RAC, a place Rutgers has lost just once in non-conference since Steve Pikiell took over before last season. Rutgers has not defeated a ranked opponent since January 2015 when they took down No. 4 Wisconsin.
Rutgers’ offensive attack presents three double-digit scorers, including junior guard Corey Sanders. Sanders scored 17 points and shot 8-for-14 from the field in last year’s matchup, a 72-61 Pirates win. So far this year, Sanders leads the team with 13 PPG. Rutgers also has another high scoring gaurd in Geo Baker, a freshman who is second on the team with 12.1 PPG. Deshawn Freeman and his 11.3 PPG will likely be matched up with Desi Rodriguez of the Pirates.
The Pirates simply have more weapons. Delgado is averaging just under a double-double at 13.8 PPG and 9.8 RPG. Rodriguez and Myles Powell have been the offense, scoring 19.4 PPG nad 14 PPG, respectively, while Khadeen Carrington looks to be settling in nicely to his new point guard role.
The atmosphere is sure to be electric, something it wasn’t when the Pirates bashed Rutgers 84-55 last time the game was held at the RAC. This year proves to be different, however the end result should stay the same and the Pirates are bound for a 10-1 start to the season.