This will be a very interesting and exciting year for the men’s basketball team. There are a lot of new things to look for- ward to in 2013-2014. A new conference, new recruits. The success of this team will hinge on the play of the vet- erans, most notably senior small forward Fuquan Edwin and red-shirt senior center Eugene Teague. Seton Hall also welcomes transfer players Stephane Man- ga, Hakeem Harris and Sterling Gibbs. Gibbs, a native of Scotch Plains, N.J., transfered from the University of Texas and was forced to sit out last season but will join other New Jersey products Jaren Sina and Harris in the Pirates’ back court. Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard is in his fourth year and finally has an opportunity to show off some of his own recruits. The talent just keeps on coming. This team has what it takes to be competitive in the new Big East conference and also has the horses to give this school a true chance at surprising some teams in the Big East Cham- pionship tournament. It is the consensus of the Setonian sports staff that Mar- quette will finish with the best regular-season record in the conference, but the tournament is still up for grabs. Some favorites to win the conference such as Georgetown or St. John’s certainly have a shot at taking the title but, Kev- in Willard’s squad has what it takes to be true contenders. A healthy group of Pirates will make it fun to watch competitions against some of the conference’s big guns such as Doug McDermott from Creighton or St. John’s forward Jakarr Sampson. A less than stellar non-conference schedule is highlight- ed by three key games, two of which will take place at the Barclays Center in late November in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic. The first will be against Oklahoma, and the following night the Pirates will take on either Virginia Tech or No. 2 Michigan State. The other notable game will take us to Piscataway, N.J., for our annual face off with in-state rival Rutgers. A rivalry we are lucky to keep alive. Rutgers is no longer a member of the Big East after they jumped ship and joined the Big Ten. We at The Setonian would advise the common fan to not miss a second of this season’s action. Luckily, the team has more than 30 games on its sched- ule, most of which will be nationally televised on Fox Sports 1. Former Seton Hall head coach Bill Raftery will join the excitable Gus Johnson on the call for what should be a very entertaining season of basketball.
By:The Collective Opinion of the Setonian Sports Editorial Board
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