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Sleeping with the Enemy: The Friars of Providence

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Your Fighting Hoyas of Georgetown head to Providence in search of its first Big East win and as usual we here at THE GLOBAL PHENOMENON are bringing you everything you need to know about our next opponent. Here with us do drop copious amounts of Friar knowledge is our good buddy @TheWarriorFriar. Let’s do this!

2017! You having fun yet? Any big New Year's resolutions?

So far so good! Started off 2017 by moving into a new place in downtown Chicago and watching the Friars get B-slapped by Butler. I also had a huge (yuge?) burger, so that was pretty sweet. And I got a 3D Gotham City puzzle. You know, just moving on up into adulthood one stupid purchase at a time.

New Year's resolutions...write more I guess. Trying to decide where to go content wise in 2017. I thought about doing a new PC hoops blog or podcast but I just haven't had the time thus far, so maybe that's next season and this year I just do silly, stupid content like hot dog reviews. I dunno, I don't really do resolutions, I'm more of a goal man, and this year the goals are:

- Drink a shot of Malort and a can of Old Style in every one of Chicago's 77 neighborhoods (if you don't know what Malort is it's basically liquor that tastes like a blend of grapefruit, pine needles, and gasoline - a true Windy City staple!).

- Make it back to Japan

- Eat more hot dogs

- Earn my next belt in Jiu Jitsu

Talk to us about this year's Friars squad. Transition year?

Big time transition year for us. I guess there's a couple reasons for that - a lot of underclassmen is certainly one reason, and I guess people will say the loss of scoring/assists/rebounds in Bentil and Dunn will leave a void that will take time to fill. I argue that the real reason is this is a transition year is because of the vacant leadership roles on the roster. Yes, we're a deeper team personnel wise this year than in the past few, but with open leadership positions this team was going to struggle.

People will say "Kyron Cartwright knew that Dunn was leaving and should have been ready to take over, and Rodney Bullock/Jalen Lindsey have been with the team for years now! They should have been ready to lead!" And sure, that would be nice, but leadership isn't as easy as just stepping up and saying "I'm the guy now," and even if it was there's still going to be an adjustment period. You end up with varying results - some days you beat UMass, Memphis, and URI, other days you get run out of the building by Boston College and Xavier. That's how it goes in years like this, and fans were expecting that.

What I think the challenge is now for fans watching is understanding that, even though we started the season strong, we've played some of the best teams in the conference early and they played against us like the top 25 teams they are. Some on the Scout boards are panicking, but it's important to remember what this team was and look for overall progress.

Ed Cooley led a team with Kris Dunn and Ben Bentil to a 9 seed in the NCAA Tournament and a near 1st round loss. Tell me again why he is one of the top coaches in the Conference.

Isn't that kind of the answer? On a team with two serious producers he lost in the Round of 32 to the team that lost on a buzzer beater in the championship game. When Dunn was the top target for every team's defense at the beginning of last season, Cooley basically said 'surprise! We got a serious frontcourt player that we developed into an NBA draft pick!' and early on that surprise caught a ton of teams off guard. But how many rabbits can Cooley pull out of his hat each season? Teams caught on that Bentil was as much of a priority as Dunn and adjusted to guard both - unfortunately for the Friars other contributions were limited on the stat line.

But let's forget the box scores for a second and think about some of the ways Cooley won even when his top two guys were defending. He put Bullock in a position to the Friars' first NCAA Tourney win in almost 20 years. He had Drew Edwards generate offense at a critical point to win a game at Butler - a top 25 win on the road - on New Years Eve. He didn't give up on Jalen Lindsey during his first two years of struggles and now Jalen has become a top producer - something that was shown in the final game against St. John's last year when Lindsey channeled his inner Larry Legend and lit up the Johnnies.

If we're talking strictly W/L's and postseason performance sure, Cooley is more middle of the pack. But you guys in DC know of all things that a coach is more than their W/L's - it's the development of players and the foundation they build on within their own program. And even when his teams struggle they always perform above expectations. The wins in postseason will come, but the ingenuity he shows in his preparation and game plans, the development of his players, and his ability to inspire and lead is what makes him one of the best in the Big East in my mind.

We played a game on CH and had fans pick one word to describe this year's Hoyas squad and the results were predictably depressing. What's one word that describes your Friars?

"Rebuilding" is probably the best one. "Transitioning" is a good one too.

Georgetown basketball and sucked the life out of me and made it very difficult for me to even watch other games. No real question here.

Hey now, at least you beat Syracuse!

But yeah, try drinking more - that helped me get through the Keno Davis years (the darkest timeline). Me and my buddy used to play a drinking game called "bowling" before each game. You had 10 nips of Jack and had to drink as many as you could before tip-off. We were supposed to keep score but we just...we never remembered.

What's the best movie you have seen recently?

Rogue One was fucking awesome. And you know what? Hot take - I liked Suicide Squad. It wasn't an amazing movie, maybe not even a good one, but I liked it. Margot killed it as Harley Quinn and Captain Boomerang was actually a good character. Also Will Smith was Will Smith, so, you know...there's that. Plus those cameo appearances of certain characters helped build the DCEU. We just need to get a proper Green Arrow on screen now, none of this "CW Batman Lite" bullshit!

What's the best meal you have eaten recently?

That burger I mentioned above, or pizza from this place down the street from me called Parlor. Had an Italian Beef style pizza. It was amazing.

One of us is going to be 0-3 in the Big East after this game. What if it is you?

If it's us then I look forward to the insane amount of bullshit I'll inevitably read on the Scout boards.

Final score prediction?

Friars finally get out of this fun and lock up a much-needed Big East win, 70-62.