How did you feel on Wednesday night? Was it almost the opposite of how you feel right now? Xavier won the biggest game in Cintas history and then followed that up by going on the road and getting comprehensively spanked by a Seton Hall team that clearly knew the opportunity that was in front of them. The Hall jumped out to a 9-0 lead and never really looked back on the way to absolutely rolling the Musketeers today. Apologies if you wasted your Sunday afternoon nap time watching that, it was utterly disgusting. You can take some solace in the fact that most of your favorite college basketball players at least got some sleepwalking in for you.
1. That start was exactly what everyone feared.
If in the vernacular teams are sometimes hungover after a big win, Xavier played the first 20 minutes in a full on alcoholic coma. The team shot 10-37 from the floor (2-12 from deep), committed 11 fouls, turned the ball over seven times, and went 4-9 from the line. That's how you end up down 19 at the half and it doesn't indicate a team that deals with great success terribly well. That was just absolutely awful, and that's without really touching on how bad the defense was.
2. This punches Seton Hall's ticket to the tournament.
The Hall has now beaten Xavier, Wichita St., Providence twice, and a good Creighton team. For what it's worth, they also only lost to Nova by one in their most recent meeting. The Pirates have only road games against Butler and DePaul left in the regular season. A loss to Butler won't be too damaging and a win would further pad what should already be a very good resume. Losing to the Blue Demons would undo a lot of the good work that Kevin Willard and his team have done down the stretch, but might not be fatal at this point. If Providence can stop their total collapse, the Big East should have at least four teams in the tournament.
3. This loss provides Coach Mack with a stick.
If there was a ever a team that came into a game looking like it had been reading a few too many of its own press clippings, it was the Musketeers today. Coach Mack spent a large portion of the game alternating between actively livid and looking like a silent rage was slowly devouring his soul. The Musketeers can expect to be abused in practice this week, and they undoubtedly deserve it. The Xavier coaching staff has had the team ready after the three losses they've suffered so far this year. Expect the coaches to have the team champing at the bit when it comes time to take the floor against Creighton on Saturday