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Sleeping with the Enemy: The Pirates of Seton Hall

Your Fighting Hoyas of Georgetown will try to pick up the pieces tonight against the Pirates of Seton Hall and as usual we here at THE GLOBAL PHENOMENON are bringing you everything you need to know about Georgetown's next opponent.  Here with us to char about the kids at the Hall is Jason Guerette, a guy you need to be following on witter for all of your Pirates needs.  let's do this!

Seton Hall! Let's get this out of the way first - what the heck has happened to you guys?

Basically, a team that really gelled at the beginning of the year has started to come apart a little bit. The losses have snowballed in the minds of the young roster and they're just really struggling being mentally tough enough to overcome them. That, and with more games comes a deeper scouting report on what they can/can't do, so teams have adjusted accordingly, and the Pirates have yet to adjust fully. One thing that they have really, really struggled with is facing intense, man-to-man defense, most-likely because there is no one on this roster who you can truly call a physical player. No one outside of Isaiah Whitehead is all that strong physically enough to handle some of the defense they have faced lately.

Let's talk about Isaiah Whitehead.  The Hall seemed to be galvanized when he was out with an injury this year and have sputtered with him back in the lineup.  What's your take on him as part of this team and at the next level?

There are folks around who suggest that maybe they were better without him (mainly message board trolls and such), which is ludicrous. He's an All-American for a reason, and one who is very cerebral and unselfish at that. If you watched the last few games that the Pirates played without him, it was abundantly clear that he's the best shot-creator on the team who isn't named Sterling Gibbs, and they needed him back BAD. The Pirates' offense only works when they move the ball, and he's one of the top players at doing that on the squad. He returned against Xavier and played tremendously.

As far as the next level, you can definitely say that it's in his future.

The Hall's schedule down the stretch is pretty brutal.  Do you think Seton Hall will be able to make the Dance?

My gut says no. If there's been one constant under Kevin Willard, it's a slide from late January to early-mid February. The teams that he's had in South Orange that have been successful have even dealt with this (the 2012 squad was able to rebound from it until their last two games, which knocked them off the bubble and about which I still don't like to talk about). First things first- they have to get back to playing as a team. Senior Brandon Mobley said some damning things about the team not playing as a team and not sharing a single goal of winning like they did earlier in the season. He's not only been around the block as the only four-year senior on the team, he's never been one to mince words. Only once they can recover mentally from this slide can they start to put together wins on the court.

If Kevin Willard can't make the Dance this season with this group, do you think the school needs to explore replacing him? Even if your answer is no, who would your ideal replacement be?

After the start they've had, it will be hard to not be on that side. Throughout his tenure, the complaint was that he didn't recruit at a high enough level, and that had some truth to it. When he signed this freshman class, it quieted some of those doubts and when they did so well to begin the season, there wasn't a naysayer to be found. But the constant slides in the latter stages of seasons and the loss to Marquette in particular (who, without Matt Carlino, were the better team bar-none) are all getting to be frustrating enough that I would not be surprised if they at least started to let their eyes wander.

If they do end up missing out on the dance and letting Willard go, an obvious candidate would be Dan Hurley, but that's still a long way off.

Do you agree with me that Kanye West is great if you like music that sounds terrible? Related, would you come with me to a Taylor Swift concert?

Definitely, and no.

What's your take on this Hoyas squad?

Admittedly, I haven't watched Georgetown much this season, although from what I've seen, I like LJ Peak and I'm surprised Josh Smith has been able to play 20 mins a night. Should be a really nice guard matchup with Sterling Gibbs and Smith-Rivera tonight. The Hoyas should have an advantage inside as the Pirates' defense in the paint has been a complete revolving door lately, taking away greatly from their defense of the three-point shot, which is one of the top marks in the country.

For those Georgetown fans insane enough to travel to the game, any recommendations around the arena for casual food? Please detail your order at the establishment you choose.

There's Dinosaur BBQ and Brick City Bar & Grill right next to the arena. You really can't go wrong with anything at either establishment- both are really good, although Brick City's a little pricey. But because of their proximity to the arena, they're the best options. Obviously, Dinosaur is your standard barbecue joint and Brick City's a bar/restaurant type feel (if you insist on a recommendation, I am a fan of their burgers).

How has the Prudential Center been as a home court this year?  Have a bunch of students attended games or is it pretty much a neutral court environment?

Really, really good. Student turnout is the best that I've seen on a consistent basis since I started as a student in 2008 (although, as an aside, they showed Anthony Avent on the big board on Saturday and I heard a few students didn't know who he was, which is a crying shame). General attendance has been very good as well, and all the early winning plus the high-ceiling talent is the main cause for that. The fans are all passionate and despite the knuckleheads that I've mentioned that get on social media and blast certain folks, all they really want is for the team to win. They get on the refs hard when they feel the Pirates have been jilted in any way.

Final score prediction?

Smith's too much inside and the Hoyas will find success down there, be it scoring or drawing fouls. Hoyas take it 70-64.