With the Big East falling apart after this tournament, it is only fitting that the Georgetown Hoyas and Syracuse Orange would meet in one last game as conference rivals. The two will face off for the third time in less than a month in the first Big East semifinal on Friday.
Georgetown won both of the previous meetings this season, knocking off the Orange, 57-46, in the Carrier Dome on Feb. 23 and dismantling them, 61-39, in the regular season finale on March 9 at the Verizon Center. Syracuse will certainly be looking for revenge on Friday.
Both teams would love to win the last of what is considered by many the best conference tournament in college basketball. The Hoyas have won seven previous (most recently in 2007), while Syracuse has won five (most recently in 2006) Big East tournaments.
As the five seed in the Big East Tournament this year, Syracuse has played one more game than top-seeded Georgetown to reach this point. The Orange beat Seton Hall on Wednesday and defeated Pittsburgh, 62-59, on Thursday to reach the semifinals. That marks their first back-to-back wins since mid-February as the Orange lost four of their final five regular season games. Georgetown easily defeated Cincinnati in the quarterfinals on Thursday.
Georgetown (25-5, 14-4) are led by Big East Player of the Year Otto Porter (16.4 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 1.9 spg), who decimated Syracuse in their first meeting, scoring 33 of the Hoyas' 57 points. Syracuse (25-8, 11-7) is a more balanced team with C.J. Fair, Michael Carter-Williams, Brandon Triche, and James Southerland all capable of being their best player on any given night.
A win over Georgetown would not only give Syracuse some revenge, but help their tournament resume. They are currently a five seed in the latest bracket projections, but could move a couple spots higher if they can win their next two. Georgetown, currently a two seed, would stand a good chance of earning a top seed if they win the Big East Tournament.
Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET on ESPN.