The fans at Verizon Center will be treated to a game between the Syracuse Orange and the Marquette Golden Eagles when they take their seats on Saturday.
Syracuse vs Marquette
When: 4:30 PM ET, Saturday, March 30, 2013
Where: Verizon Center, Washington, District of Columbia
TV: 4:30 p.m. ET, CBS.
PREDICTION: Syracuse 70, Marquette 65
Oddsmakers currently have the Orange listed as 3-point favorites versus the Golden Eagles, while the game’s total is sitting at 126.
The conference that is disintegrating due to the realignment chaos is assured of having a team in the Final Four. Big East mates Syracuse and Marquette square off Saturday in Washington D.C. in the East Regional final, marking the first time since 2009 that teams from the same conference will compete for a Final Four berth. The fourth-seeded Orange dominated top-seeded Indiana on Thursday while third-seeded Marquette thrashed second-seeded Miami.
Sophomore point guard Michael Carter-Williams had a spectacular game against Indiana with a career-best 24 points to go with six rebounds and four steals. “This was the best he’s played all year,” Boeheim said. “He was tremendous. He was the difference in the game on offense, clearly.” Williams ranks fourth on the Orange at 12.1 points per game while averaging a team-best 7.5 assists. He has 104 steals, one of three players nationally with 100 or more. Junior forward C.J. Fair averages a team-high 14.4 points and also grabs a team-leading seven rebounds per game, while senior guard Brandon Triche (13.8) and senior forward James Southerland (13.4) also score in double digits.
Syracuse won its last outing, a 61-50 result against Indiana on March 28. They covered in that game as a 5-point underdog.
Team record: 29-9 SU, 18-15-1 ATS
The Golden Eagles are led by Blue, but feature a wealth of contributors who are capable of stepping up at any time. Junior forward Jamil Wilson had 16 points and eight rebounds against Miami, while Blue and junior reserve forward Davante Gardner contributed 14 points apiece. In fact, Gardner’s 11.4 average is second on the squad behind Blue’s 14.8. Wilson averages 9.9 points, senior guard Junior Cadougan averages 8.6 and senior wing Trent Lockett contributes 7.2 points and a team-best 5.1 rebounds. A blue-collar mentality sometimes leads to Marquette being overshadowed by more talented teams. “We want to keep being the hunters,” Blue said. “We don’t want to be the hunted.”
Last time out for Marquette, they were a 71-61 winner as they battled Miami on the road. They covered in the match as a 5.5-point underdog.
Team record: 26-8 SU, 15-15 ATS