College basketball preview capsules 3-12
FDU at SFU men
NEC Tournament finals
Tipoff: 7 p.m., DeGol Arena
Records: Saint Francis (18-13, 12-6 NEC, No. 1 seed); Fairleigh Dickinson (19-13, 12-6, No, 2 seed).
Coaches: Rob Krimmel is 97-120 in his seventh season at Saint Francis and overall. Greg Herenda is 79-107 in his sixth season at FDU and 204-186 in 13 seasons overall.
Online video: NECFrontRow.com
Radio: Online at sfuathletics.com
Notes: This is for all the marbles, with the winner advancing to the NCAA Tournament. It would be the Red Flash’s first NCAA berth since 1991, and second ever. When the Flash won the NEC in 1991, they beat FDU in the tourney finals. … FDU was last in the NCAA tourney in 2016 and is seeking its sixth appearance in school history (also 1985, 88, 98, 2005). … The teams finished tied for first in the league during the regular season, and each won on the other’s home court. Saint Francis is the No. 1 seed and gets to host this game because it won the tiebreaker over the Knights. … Both teams have several terrific players and a lot of experience. G Darnell Edge leads FDU in scoring (16.3) and is one of the best free-throw shooters in the country 88.6 percent. He also shoots 46.9 percent from 3. G Jahlil Jenkins (13.3) also is dangerous and shoots 86.7 percent from the FT line. … F Mike Holloway gives FDU a good presence in the paint, averaging 12.5 points and 5.6 rebounds. … SFU has a 58.8 percent chance to win, according to ESPN’s matchup predictor. The Flash probably will be favored by about 3 points when the line moves today.
Mirror prediction: Saint Francis 76, FDU 74
Comment: A very difficult game to predict, but that’s the way it should be in a conference championship with an NCAA berth at stake. Look for the Flash to lead by a slim margin for much of the second half and for Keith Braxton, Jamaal King and Isaiah Blackmon to seal it with big shots and free throws down the stretch.
Mirror prediction record: 22-9
— Cory Giger
Pitt men vs. Boston College
ACC TOURNAMENT FIRST ROUND
Tipoff: 7 p.m., Spectrum Center, Charlotte, N.C.
Records: Pittsburgh (13-18, 3-15 in ACC); Boston College (14-16, 5-13 in ACC)
Coaches: Jeff Capel is 13-18 in his first season at Pitt and is 175-128 in his 10th season overall. Jim Christian is 62-99 in his fourth season at Boston College and is 304-253 in 16 seasons overall.
Notes: Pitt leads the all-time series 34-19 but has lost the last two in the series, including a 66-57 setback on Feb. 12. … Panthers freshman Xavier Johnson was named to the All-ACC Freshman team on Monday. … The winner of this game will play sixth-seeded Syracuse on Wednesday at 9 p.m. … Pitt is 4-5 all-time in the ACC Tournament since joining the conference in 2014. … The Panthers are the No. 14 seed. Boston College is No. 11. … Pitt won its first round game as a No. 14 seed in 2017.
Mirror prediction: Boston College 60, Pittsburgh 54
Comment: The Panthers’ freshmen have hit a wall, but there is hope on the horizon.
Mirror prediction record: 23-7
— Michael Boytim