Pregame Primer: Xavier Musketeers

December 30, 2016

Alex Lewontin

The Georgetown men’s basketball team (8-5, 0-1 Big East) will face the No. 17 Xavier Musketeers (11-2, 1-0 Big East) at the Verizon Center in the nation’s capital on Saturday. Tip-off is scheduled for 11:00 AM and will be televised on Fox Sports One.

Georgetown will look to recover from their opening loss in conference play to Marquette (10-3, 1-0 Big East). The Hoyas were stunted by turnovers and unable to overcome an early 14 point deficit. Rodney Pryor led the Hoyas with 23 points in that game.

Xavier will look to continue its hot start to conference play after blowing out Providence (10-4, 0-1 Big East) 82-56 at home. The Musketeers were led by sophomore guards Trevon Bluiett and Edmond Sumner, who scored 22 and 13, respectively. Bluiett has tallied eight 20-point games this season.

Bluiett and Sumner were both named to the Wooden Award Preseason Top 50, which recognizes players who are considered early frontrunners for the prestigious John Wooden award. Both were also chosen as Preseason All Big East First Team at the beginning of the season.

The 26 point victory was the largest margin of victory for Xavier in four years of Big East play. The Musketeers were also the first team that has managed to score 80 points against a stout Providence defense this season.

Xavier began the year ranked No. 7, but recently fell to 17 following two consecutives losses to Colorado (10-3, Pac-12) and No. 4 Baylor (12-0, Big 12).

Georgetown had won six games in a row prior to the Marquette loss.

Georgetown has struggled since the new Big East formed in 2013. In their fourth year since the reconfiguration of the Big East, the Hoyas are under .500 (27-29) against conference opponents.

“That’s what is the beauty and the curse of the Big East, there are no easy games,” said Georgetown Head Coach John Thompson III.

Beginning with Xavier, five of the next six games for the Hoyas will be at home. Georgetown will look to take advantage of the homestand in order to gain footing in conference standings.
“We need to get these wins moving forward. It’s always a challenge…and being competitors, that’s what we want,” said Georgetown guard Rodney Pryor.

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