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GAME THREAD: Providence at Georgetown

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Hoyas are back after a 21-day layoff looking to end a 5-game losing streak

NCAA Basketball: Providence at Georgetown Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Guess who’s back, back again.

Georgetown’s back. Tell your friends

Your Georgetown Hoyas ARE BACK and while I’m really showing my age with old Eminem lyrics, it just felt really appropriate.

So for the first time in three weeks it’s go time as the Hoyas host Providence later this afternoon in a nationally televised game on broadcast TV!

Game 12: Providence Friars (9-7, 5-5) at Georgetown Hoyas (3-8, 1-5)

When: Saturday, 1 PM

Where: McDonough Gym

Series: Georgetown leads 46-30

Last meeting: They Hoyas were swept by Providence last season, dropping both by double-digits

TV: CBS (Ian Eagle & Clark Kellogg)

Radio: The Team 980, SiriusXM 384, Radio.com (Rich Chvotkin, 47th season)

KenPom Ranking: Providence 60, Georgetown 109

KenPom Projection: Providence 71, Georgetown 68 (61 percent)

Line: Providence -3.5, o/u 140.5

PREVIEW

Well as everyone here knows this will be the Hoyas first game in three weeks after a COVID-19 pause hit the program just a few hours before what should have been a home game against DePaul on Jan. 13.

Instead of getting a pretty good shot at a win against the Blue Demons, a struggling Georgetown team had to go into quarantine and now after only a few days or practice will host a Providence team that has given Georgetown all kinds of fits over the last six years.

Trying to figure out what Georgetown - which was on a five-game losing streak when this pause began - might look like after layoff is anyone’s guess. All we really know is that grad transfer point guard Jalen Harris is still away from the team while seldom used freshman forward Collin Holloway injured his knee in practice and will also be unavailable according to coach Patrick Ewing.

Providence coach Ed Cooley has flipped the script on this series as he’s led the Friars to season sweeps over the Hoyas in five of the last six seasons. Georgetown did get the sweep in the 2018-19 season. It’s possible that the teams might only meet once this season as the game in Rhode Island was postponed along with three other games over the last three weeks.

So while the players and even coaches have changed, the one thing that remains constant is Providence being able to control the tempo in these meetings.

One of the biggest matchups to watch this season will be Qudus Wahab guarding Nate Watson. A local product coming home, Watson has really come into his own as a senior. Can Wahab make life difficult for Watson without needing help in the form of a double team? That would certainly be a start in the right direction for the upset minded Hoyas.

David Duke is also much improved from last season and is probably on the short list for BIG EAST Player of the Year. A top-50 recruit, Duke, now a junior, can do a bit of everything and has become the go to guy for Cooley. Duke can play on the wing, shoot the 3, and play point if needed. Speaking of point guard, an unsung player to watch out for is freshman guard Alyn Breed. Providence insider Kevin McNamara mentioned Breed as a player on a bit of a hot streak. You can listen to the entire conversation here:

It’s early but Providence is looking like a bubble team as Cooley tries to keep the Friars NCAA tournament run going. Before March Madness was canceled last season Cooley was on track to guide the Friars to a sixth bid in seven seasons. This is a game where the Hoyas have a shot at playing spoiler and hanging a bad loss on their longtime conference rivals.

COUNTDOWN TO 1,000

If Jamorko Pickett can keep up his output from the last two games - Syracuse (17 points), Butler (12) - we could have a photo finish between him and Jahvon Blair in the race to hit a grand.

Going into the Providence game Blair holds a narrow three-point edge over his classmate (936-933).

Bobby’s Prediction

Providence 68, Georgetown 61. Until proven otherwise, these Hoyas aren’t built for lower scoring slugfests and that’s exactly what this will be on Saturday afternoon.

Leave your witty (and non-witty) in-game comments here!

HOYA SAXA!