Four of the nation’s top 25 teams are alive to win the 2013 Big East Tournament.
Syracuse, Georgetown, Notre Dame and Louisville managed to advance to the semifinals. Each club will play on Friday night with a chance to move on to the championship game on Saturday.
Georgetown is the top seed in the tournament with their 14-4 conference record. They’ll play Syracuse, who finished fifth in their final Big East season. The Orange will take the court at Madison Square Garden one day after upsetting Pittsburgh. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. ET.
The No.2 seed Louisville will take on Notre Dame, who pulled an upset of their own on Thursday. The Fighting Irish beat Marquette by eight points. Notre Dame and the Cardinals will take the court after Georgetown and Syracuse are done, at approximately 9 p.m. ET.
ESPN will carry both games from MSG. Viewers can watch a free live stream online at espn3.com.
Below are previews for both contests.
(19) Syracuse vs. (5) Georgetown
It will be the final time that the longtime rivals face off in Big East play. Syracuse is set to leave for the ACC next season.
In what was thought to be the last matchup between the two in conference play, the Hoyas pulled off a lopsided victory. They beat the Orange 61-39, holding them to their lowest point total of the season. Two weeks prior, Otto Porter scored 33 points and led Georgetown to an 11-point win in front of 35,012 fans.
Heading into the tournament, the teams were going in opposite directions, with the Hoyas having won 12 of 13 and the Orange losing four of their last five. On Tuesday and Wednesday, though, Syracuse has looked like the dominant ream that started the season 18-1. James Southerland has been the biggest key, hitting 12 of 15 three-pointers. If he can continue his hot shooting, Syracuse could pull of a second straight upset.
Betting Line: Georgetown-1.5, 116.5
Prediction: Syracuse 61, Georgetown 58
(24) Notre Dame vs. (4) Louisville
Like Syracuse and Georgetown, Louisville and Notre Dame will also face off for the third time in 2013. They competed in the last game of the regular season, with the Cardinals pulling out a decisive 73-57 win at home.
The victory is part of an eight-game winning streak that Louisville is currently riding. Junior guard Russ Smith has led the way, averaging 18.3 points per game.
If any team can slow Louisville down, though, it might be Notre Dame. The Irish were the last team to hand the Cardinals a loss, beating them in a five overtime marathon, 104-101. Notre Dame held Louisville to 20 percent shooting from behind the arc, and could advance to finals by forcing them into some more bad shots on Friday.
Betting Line: Louisville-8.5, 123
Prediction: Louisville 70, Notre Dame 60
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