Butler vs. Providence: What you need to know

Head coach LaVall Jordan instructs his team from the sideline. Butler would improve to 8-7 in the Big East with a win over the Friars. Collegian file photo. 

JOSH MULLENIX | STAFF REPORTER | jmulleni@butler.edu

Who: Butler vs. Providence

When: Feb. 17, 12 p.m.

Where: Hinkle Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana

How to Watch: FOX

The Butler men’s basketball team welcomes the Providence Friars to Hinkle Fieldhouse for their second-to-last home game of the regular season. Losers of three straight, the Bulldogs need a win at Hinkle to get themselves back on track and finish the season on a high note. Providence is coming off their biggest win of the season, beating No. 3 Villanova. Here’s what you need to know as the Bulldogs try to end their three-game losing streak.

The Bulldogs cannot lose another Big East game at home.

Butler has two games left inside Hinkle this season. They have put themselves in a position where they must win both of them. The Bulldogs did a good job all season of winning the games they were supposed to until Georgetown came walking into Hinkle on Tuesday. Now the Bulldogs are 7-7 in Big East play with a bad loss at home. Winning both of these home games is a good place to start and hopefully they can pull out one of their two road games to end the season. Just a couple weeks ago the Bulldogs were in great position, but a three-game losing streak puts Butler’s backs against the wall.

The defense has to be better, especially down low.

The Butler defense allowed Georgetown to shoot almost 60 percent from the floor and dish out 20 assists. On top of that, Butler got manhandled by a big man for the second game in a row. After a cast of Xavier big men scored 51 points last week, Georgetown’s Marcus Derrickson scored 27 points on 11-13 shooting. The defense has not been great the past couple games, especially down low. Unless Butler fixes things on defense, they might have a hard time guarding the balanced Friar attack.

Improve on things from the first meeting.

Kamar Baldwin was the only Bulldog in double figures in the first matchup against Providence. A more balanced offensive attack will lead to better shots for everybody and more than 60 points on 35 percent shooting. The 3-point line was not kind to the Bulldogs either, as they shot 25 percent from beyond the arc. Offensively, more threats to score and a better game from deep will give the Bulldogs a better chance to come away with the victory.

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