The story: Still in search of their first Big East victory, the Bulls will play host to Seton Hall. USF is on a 10-game losing streak, which is two shy of the school’s record-setting 12-game losing skid in 1979-80.
It will be the second meeting of the season for the two teams. The first was a 94-89 overtime Bulls’ loss Jan. 20. USF led by 13 in the second half, but the Pirates attacked late in the game to tie it up and send the game to overtime, in which they out scored the Bulls 16-11.
USF hasn’t won a game since Dec. 23 against Loyola Marymount in the Rainbow Classic in Honolulu.
During their losing streak, the Bulls have played well against ranked opponents, losing to No. 4 Villanova and No. 10 West Virginia by a combined seven points. However, in their last outing, they were blown out 80-66 by DePaul, which has only beaten two Big East teams this season.Seton Hall is on a five-game winning streak, which started with its victory over USF earlier in the season.
The Pirates have averaged 79 points during their winning streak, while the Bulls have averaged 58.2 points throughout their streak of losses.
Seton Hall’s last game was a 73-67 win over Rutgers on Sunday.
Keep an eye on: guard Collin Dennis and forward Melvin Buckley.
After missing 12 straight games due to an injury, Dennis has started the past four and played in the past six.
Since his return, Dennis has averaged 5.2 points a game, including his season-high 10-point performance in the Bulls’ 73-60 loss to Cincinnati on Jan. 31.
Buckley is averaging 12.8 points, 5.9 rebounds and 36.2 minutes a game. He scored a team-high 22 points and added five rebounds in the Bulls’ loss to the Bearcats, and he scored 17 in the first contest with the Pirates.
– Kevin Smetana