Around the Hall: Looking Forward to Cincinnati, Too Optimistic, Must-Win, Revis, Lion's Den

The Pirates should actually be able to take something beneficial away from their fourth consecutive loss, writes Brendan Prunty of The Star-Ledger:

3. Is there anything that Seton Hall can take away from this one? I actually do think so. First, that they can stay competitive without Jeremy Hazell scoring a zillion points. That's a huge boost because it should give the Pirates confidence that they can get baskets when they need to and not have to rely on Hazell to hit a 3-pointer from 30 feet away. Herb Pope and Jeff Robinson did a great job in getting Seton Hall key baskets inside in the final minutes. Second — and maybe most important at this point — is that Seton Hall can survive on the road. Hard to imagine that this was their first road game since Nov. 20 at Cornell. The crowd at Gampel Pavilion was raucous all night long and until the final two minutes, Seton Hall had done a nice job of taking them out of it with big baskets and consistent runs. That's got to give them hope heading into places like Georgetown, Villanova and Pittsburgh in the next month.

Hoping for a Seton Hall victory at Gampel Pavilion may have been too optimistic reports Eamonn Brennan of ESPN:

So maybe hoping for a Hall win would have been too optimistic. The point is that Bobby Gonzalez's team, after starting 9-1, has now lost four straight. Granted, three of those losses were understandable (to West Virginia in OT, to Syracuse, and to UConn) but one was an indictment of the Pirates altogether (the 102-94 OT loss to Virginia Tech without Malcolm Delaney on Saturday). Seton Hall entered Big East play with a legitimate shot at reaching the NCAA tournament. Those hopes are fading fast.

Well, can't say it any better than that.  Agreed, Eamonn, agreed. 

Andy Katz looks at the "must-win" contest facing the Pirates tomorrow night:

The Pirates must win. They must start with a quality win and get on a roll. Seton Hall came close again Wednesday night, tied with Connecticut late before the Huskies busted out on a 9-0 run and won 71-63. But that's three times now (even though it's against three of the top five or six teams in the league) that the Pirates have lost late. Losing at home to West Virginia and Syracuse and now at Connecticut -- with a nonconference loss wedged in between against Virginia Tech in Cancun -- is a slide. Take out a win over Navy and you've got a real serious spiral with a previous home loss to Temple making it five losses in the last six games. "Dean Smith used to say that you don't want to make too many games life or death because you'll die a lot of deaths. I like that line," Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez said. "I don't want to say it's life or death and put more pressure on the kids."

I'm pretty sure the kids understand tomorrow's game is life or death, figuratively speaking.  I don't think Gonzalez needs to put any more pressure on his players in advance of tomorrow's game.  If they can't get up for this must-win, then I don't imagine they'd be able to at all, the rest of the way.  Another home loss and barring a miracle, the season is in fact, all but dead.  

As written about on Gonzo Ball many times, including our interview with Herb Pope, the Aliquippa native shares a special bond with NY Jets shut-down corner back Darrelle Revis.  In another Pope/Revis article, Brian Lewis of the NY Post asks Revis about the influence that he's had on Pope:

"I know football and basketball are two different sports. I played a little bit in high school, had a couple of scholarships to play basketball. But one thing I told him was just having that heart, going out there and getting the grades, making sure you stay out of trouble, man; do something,'' Revis told The Post. "You can do something to change your life and your family's life. "I've been on him since he's been up here. He's probably like 10 minutes away from me at Seton Hall, so it's just something that you’ve got to keep on him. You can't give up on kids; you’ve just got to keep on putting it in their brain because one day it might click in their head and they're like 'OK,' and it sticks to them."

In a Big East wrap up for SNY, Adam Zagoria has an interesting quote from Bobby Gonzalez:

"The bottom line we need to do is, we need to get a win, period," Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez said Tuesday, before the UConn game. "If it's not Wednesday night against UConn, then we gotta try and get it Saturday night against Cincinnati."

Did Gonzalez really say, "if it's not Wednesday night against UConn?"  Is it me, or is that writing his team off before the game? If I were on the team I don't know how I'd feel about my coach looking ahead of our current opponent in search of our first win? Like I said, Interesting.  

NBE Basketball Report checks in with a look at Seton Hall Prep's Sterling Gibbs:

One of the most highly touted players of last weekend’s ‘New Year’s Jump Off’ hosted by the Playaz Basketball Club AAU program, run by Jimmy Salmons, was Seton Hall Prep point guard Sterling Gibbs. While scoring 27 points in the Prep’s 73-56 win over High Tech, Gibbs certainly lived up to his advanced billing.

Sterling, the younger brother of Pitt sophomore guard and NBE’s reigning Big East Player of the Week, specifically mentioned to NBE he has scholarship offers from Pittsburgh, Indiana, St. John’sSeton Hall,Rutgers and Virginia, among others. Gibbs also told NBE he looks to cut his list down after this season.

Join Coach Gonzalez Saturday night for a live taping of the Seton Hall Basketball Show:

Pirate Fans are invited to join Coach Bobby Gonzalez and host Gary Cohen this Saturday evening at Brick City Bar and Grill (35 Edison Place, Newark, NJ) for a live taping of the Seton Hall Basketball Show.  Taping is expected to begin approximately one hour following the conclusion of the Cincinnati game scheduled to tip at 6pm.  

Oh, no.  Is it me or does this have the potential to become entirely disastrous? Let's think about this for a minute. They're going to film a segment with Bobby Gonzalez at a bar.  About an hour after the New York Jets wrap up their playoff game.  About an hour after the Pirates play at home against the Cincinnati Bearcats.  Again, this has disaster written ALL OVER IT.  Say the Jets lose, suddenly, you now have a bar full of drunk pissed off Jets fans on your hands, who will undoubtedly be sticking around to drink away their sorrows.  As the game ends, a majority of the televisions will turn to the end of the Pirates game.  What happens if the Pirates were to lose their fifth in a row and fall to 0-4 in the Big East?  You're then going to wheel in the head coach to a foaming lion's den? To film something for television? Oh, no.  You may want to rethink this taping, Seton Hall. 

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