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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Thursday / October 17.
  • “Obviously, we’re coming off a great win on Sunday against Georgetown….We had a great sold-out crowd. It was a great day at the RAC. It was great to get our first Big East conference win. WE really needed it.”

    -Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez on the 65-60 win over then-No. 12 Georgetown

    “We think Rutgers is a good team. They’ve played a great schedule. We’ve played a very tough schedule also. They have a great recruiting class with [Greg] Echenique and [Mike] Rosario.

    “We know that they’re desperate to win because they’re 0-8 in the league…Then you throw everything out because it’s a rivalry game.”

    –Gonzo on tonight’s tilt with the Scarlet Knights

    “Sometimes you don’t always go head-to-head [in recruiting], but sometimes you do. There’s always an added thing when the metropolitan teams go against each other for the recruiting rights.”

    –Gonzo on Rutgers, Seton Hall and St. John’s playing one another

    The person who will play point guard next year for the Rutgers basketball team is likely not someone on the current roster.

    With the graduation of Anthony Farmer, the Scarlet Knights must find someone else to be their floor general for next year. Having swung and missed on Vincent Council of The Patterson (N.C.) School because he opted for Providence, Rutgers is now looking at James Beatty, a 6-2, 195-pound point guard at Miami Dade College who is averaging 13.6 points. He is a native of Wilmington, N.C.

    Cincinnati, Baylor, Providence and NEbraska are also reportedly involved with Beatty.

    Playing the final college basketball game at the 42-year Spectrum in Philadelphia, No. 21 Villanova stunned No. 3 Pitt 67-57 Wednesday night.

    The win marked the first signature win of the year for the Wildcats (16-4, 4-3 Big East), and their first win over a ranked team in five tries this year. Pitt, a former No. 1, dropped to 18-2, 6-2.

    Reggie Redding paced ‘Nova with 18 points, including a perfect 10-of-10 from the stripe. Dante Cunningham added 15 points and Scottie Reynolds 10.

    Sam Young paced Pitt with 14 points and nine rebounds, Brad Wannamaker tallied 13 and Levance Fields 11. DeJuan Blair played in foul trouble for much of the game and finished with seven points and nine boards.

    Here’s the first story on Thursday night’s Rutgers-Seton Hall showdown at The Prudential Center (9 p.m., ESPN2). Read this feature on Rutgers guard Mike Rosario and his frustrations through his freshman year.

    The two teams are a combined 19-20 overall, 1-13 in the Big East.

    The teams split a pair of games last year, with each winning on the other’s court.

    The March 9 game at The Prudential Center ended when JR Inman of Rutgers (pictured) drained an off-balance 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Knights a 64-61 victory.

    In the meantime, here are some choice quotes from yesterday’s Rutgers practice.

    JR INMAN ON THE RIVALRY

    “Honestly, every single time I’ve seen Rutgers and Seton Hall play, there’s been something crazy, from my [game-winning] shot last year to people throwing elbows to whatever…I feel like whenever we play Seton Hall, it’s not even a basketball game anymore, it’s like a movie or something. It’s more than just putting the ball in the hoop. It’s kind of crazy, but it’s fun.”

    It is one of the tremendous ironies of the basketball world.

    Year in and year out, New Jersey features three of the top high school programs in the nation in St. Anthony, St. Benedict’s and St. Patrick.

    Yet New Jersey’s two Big East teams — Rutgers and Seton Hall — remain at the bottom of the conference. When the two teams face off Thursday night at The Prudential Center (9 p.m., ESPN 2), they will bring a combined conference record of 1-13 into the showdown.

    “To win in the Big East you have to have a Big East roster,” said St. Anthony coach Bob Hurley, whose team went 32-0 last season en route to the New Jersey Tournament of Champions title and a mythical national championship and sent six players to the Division 1 ranks. “It’s not a forgiving league. [Rutgers and Seton Hall] are not complete teams, but they’re not bad. Neither of them is a bad team. There are no nights off [in the Big East].

    “What separates them is just the depth of talent, and they just don’t have it.”

    Duke topped the new Associated Press Top 25 that came out Monday.

    The Blue Devils are 18-1 under coach Mike Krzyzewski and face No. 6 Wake Forest Wednesday night.

    They were ranked on top for at least one week in every season from 1997-98 to 2003-04 and only UCLA’s 134 weeks at No. 1 beats Duke’s 111 in the 59-year history of the poll.

    “When you have a chance to be voted No. 1 at any time it is an honor you don’t take lightly,” Krzyzewski said Monday. “It is not something you try to keep winning but you try to keep improving. I think it goes with the territory we’ve been in for awhile.”