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Providence hosts Marquette on Wednesday night

Who will win this Big East bubble battle?

NCAA Basketball: Marquette at Xavier Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

The Facts

Time: 7:00 P.M. ET

TV: CBS Sports

Location: Alumni Hall

Records: Marquette 8-7 (4-5) | Providence 8-7 (4-5)

Line: Providence -2

Providence and Marquette are both in need of a win entering Wednesday night. With March drawing closer, both schools find themselves on the outside looking in for March Madness.

The Golden Eagles are looking for a bounce back victory after losing at home to DePaul last Saturday. The offense sputtered in the loss, scoring just 61 points. D.J. Carton had 23 of those points, but no one else contributed more than 8. A late comeback was not enough to overcome an 11-point second half lead for DePaul, and what seemed like an easy win became Marquette’s worse loss of the season.

Meanwhile, Providence is coming off a loss at Villanova. Ed Cooley’s defense held the Wildcats to just 24 points in the first half, but they exploded for 47 in the second en route to a 15-point victory. The Friars have lost 4 of their last 5 and are now sitting in a tie with Marquette for sixth in the Big East despite being predicted to finish third in the conference. Providence already lost to the Golden Eagles once this season, and a second loss would make thing much more difficult for the Friars going forward.

Marquette took the first meeting between these two at home by dominating in the paint. Wojo’s squad had a 36-22 advantage on points in the paint while collecting 13 offensive rebounds. Defensively, the Golden Eagles held Providence to just 15-40 shooting inside the arc and forced 10 turnovers. Dawson tied his career high with 20 points and collected a handful of important offensive rebounds to stave off a late Providence comeback attempt.

Things have changed for the Friars since that game, though. Freshman guard Alyn Breed, starting in place of the injured Jared Bynum, did not score in just 15 minutes of playing time at Marquette. He has since found his confidence, scoring 15 points in the win at Creighton and adding 18 points with 11 rebounds at Villanova last game. Center Nate Watson also missed a stretch of that game with an injury, which contributed to a 21-3 first half run by Marquette. With Breed playing well and Watson healthy, the Friars are hoping for a different outcome this time around. Jared Bynum is also a game time decision after missing the last four games.