The language of the press release is rather cold: “The BIG EAST Conference has announced the rescheduling of a Xavier game on its December men’s basketball conference schedule. Seton Hall will play at Xavier on Wednesday, Dec. 30, at 7 p.m. ET. FS1 will televise the contest.” The implications are not. Xavier seems to be fully healthy and ready to get back to playing basketball with the Big East starting up in earnest.
Adding a game on the 30th is not an undue burden on the team. That makes the Seton Hall game a home tilt fully a week after the December 23rd road game at Creighton. The next game after that would be a Saturday, January 2nd game at Villanova. Xavier would then fall back into the, hopefully, normal rhythm of a Big East season with one midweek and one weekend game.
Seton Hall is currently a mildly surprising 4-3 and actually sits below Xavier at 53rd in the KenPom rankings. The Pirates have a good win at Penn State and their three losses aren’t necessarily bad so much as at least Rhode Island is a game they should have won and the other two (Oregon and Louisville) are the kind they would have won recently.
No matter how you cut it and no matter who it is against, Xavier rescheduling games is good news. With no more news of positive tests, no indication that the game this weekend, and Ben Stanley in the fold, this season has room to continue on its upward track.