After the departure of Isaiah Whitehead from last year’s Big East tournament championship team, many believed that Seton Hall would struggle without their leading scorer. After a successful non-conference schedule, the Pirates hit some early struggles in the Big East as the team was still finding their identity.
That identity revealed itself late in the season as Seton Hall picked up wins over nationally ranked Creighton and Butler and that pushed the Pirates into the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive year and the 11th time in team history.
Seton Hall received a nine seed in the tournament as they will face eight seed Arkansas in the Round of 64 on Friday. The game will be played in Greenville, S.C. and no time has been announced as of Selection Sunday. The reward for the winner of this game…the number one seed North Carolina if the Tar Heels take care of business against 16 seed Texas Southern.
Seton Hall and Arkansas have only met once, when the Razorbacks defeated the Pirates in 2010 in Louisville.
The Pirates finished the season with a 21-11 record and are coming off a close loss against Villanova on Friday night in the Big East Tournament. With a RPI of 44 and a 10-5 record in games decided by six points or less, the Pirates received a fair seed and a lot better placement than last season. After winning the Big East tournament in 2016, Seton Hall was rewarded with a game against Gonzaga in Colorado, a game Seton Hall lost 68-52.
Heading into the tournament, Seton Hall is coming off of their most successful stretch of the season. They have won five of their last six games and with two wins over ranked teams in the final weeks of the season. Seton Hall is coming into the NCAA Tournament with confidence that they can advance in the tournament.
This is just the beginning of Double G Sports’ coverage of Seton Hall’s second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance. Later this week, we will have a preview of the match-up between Seton Hall and Arkansas and a full recap of the action from Greenville on Friday night.