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Xavier and Cincinnati meet in Crosstown Shootout

A nice sense of normalcy in this crazy year.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Second Round-Xavier vs Florida State Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

It goes without saying that 2020 has been absolutely awful for so many reasons. To make things worse, so many traditional annual events have gotten canceled for the year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

One event that remained on the schedule though is Sunday’s Crosstown Shootout between the Xavier Musketeers and Cincinnati Bearcats, one of college basketball’s most contentious rivalries year in and year out.

The Musketeers bring a 5-0 record into this game, and their most recent performance, a 79-48 win over Tennessee Tech, was an great effort from a Xavier team who looked sluggish in their previous three victories. Xavier had a well-balanced scoring attack, and Paul Scruggs continues to look like one of the nation’s best distributors, averaging a Big East leading 7.4 assists per game.

Xavier will also have freshmen Colby Jones and CJ Wilcher, both of whom had been quarantining due to COVID.

Cincinnati had to pause due to COVID and have played just one game this year, a 67-55 win over Lipscomb on Wednesday. Cincinnati looked inconsistent, training 47-38 with 11 minutes to go. We’ve seen that with the teams with COVID pauses this season, and Xavier may very well be able to hold the advantage here since the Bearcats have had limited amount of practice this year.



THE FACTS

Time and Date: Sunday, December 6, 4 p.m. ET

Records: Xavier (5-0) | Cincinnati (1-0)

Rankings: Xavier (#63 KenPom) | Cincinnati (#57 KenPom)

TV Channel: ESPN

Watch Online: WatchESPN