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Seton Hall Basketball: Pirates Release 2012 Big East Schedule

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The order of the Pirates' Big East Schedule (and the ESPN games) are out! Let's check it out, shall we?

1/2 at DePaul

1/5 at Notre Dame

1/9 vs Louisville (ESPN2)

1/13 vs Providence

1/16 at Marquette

1/23 vs USF (ESPNU)

1/27 at St. John's

1/30 at Georgetown

2/2 vs Cincinnati (ESPNU)

2/4 at Pittsburgh (ESPNU)

2/10 vs UConn

2/12 at Rutgers (ESPN2)

2/16 vs Syracuse

2/19 vs Marquette

2/23 at Louisville

2/25 vs Villanova (ESPNU)

3/5 at Providence

3/8 vs Rutgers

JP's Analysis:

- Overall, the repeat opponents are tough, as we already knew, but the slate is very balanced. No three-game marathon road stretches, and only one real gauntlet (the mid-February stretch of Rutgers, Cuse, Marquette and Louisville). They do open up their slate on the road again, and this time with two in a row against DePaul (remember what happened last year?) and Notre Dame (near-impossible to beat in South Bend most years), but unlike a road game right off the bat against, say, Syracuse, those games are more winnable. Let's just hope for a rebound from the disaster that was the last time the Pirates went to Chicago.

- Speaking of road games, the Pirates get those road games out of the way early. This has a double-edged sword effect- without a go-to point guard thanks to Jordan Theodore's graduation, the team could have a tough time with those. But once February hits, they get the benefit of home cooking down the stretch, which is something that could help them dramatically.

- The slate of national TV games is challenging. The two games on ESPN2 are the home Louisville game and (AGAIN) the road game at Rutgers. Rivalry games are always a toss-up, and we all know about Louisville. Of the ESPNU games, three out of the four are at home, giving the Pirates a chance for some positive exposure against USF, Cincinnati and Villanova.

- Aren't you glad the Pirates last shot to knock off Syracuse is at home? Seton Hall has a chance to get some momentum into that game as well, with a winnable game against UConn (when was the last time we said that?) followed by the away Rutgers game. God, I hope to send the Orange on their way with a loss like the Pirates dealt West Virginia last year.

- Combined with the back third of the non-conference schedule, the Pirates should have some momentum heading into their Big East schedule. After true road games at LSU and at Wake Forest in the beginning of December, Seton Hall stays local for four games, with home contests with UNC-A&T, Longwood and Stony Brook along with a neutral site game "at" LIU (the game will be at the brand-spanking new Barclays Center). The game against LIU is by far the toughest of those four, and it's still a game Seton Hall should win.

Can you wait for the new season to get started? I sure can't. Hazard Zet Forward to all!