PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: Butler-Providence and Ben Simmons vs. the class of the SEC

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
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GAME OF THE NIGHT: No. 16 Butler at No. 18 Providence, 6:30 p.m.

Two teams that badly need this win. Butler has struggled since the start of Big 12 play, having already lost to Villanova and Providence at home as well as getting drubbed by Xavier in Cincinnati. If they have any hope of winning the Big East regular season title (they probably don’t) they have to win this game. That said, the Friars are in a rough patch of their own. They’ve lost two of their last three games and their lone win came in a game at Creighton in which they played poorly enough to lose by 20. The good news? Someone has to win.

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR

  1. No. 24 South Carolina lost their first game of the season last week. They’ll try to right the ship tonight at Ole Miss in a 7:00 p.m. tip.
  2. Clemson, who has won four in a row and beaten three straight ranked teams at home, will play at No. 13 Virginia tonight at 8:00 p.m.
  3. No. 3 Kansas will visit Oklahoma State tonight at 7:00 p.m. The Cowboys came within a possession of knocking off Oklahoma last week.
  4. Georgetown got off to a 4-1 start in Big East play, but they lost to Villanova at home over the weekend. Tonight, they visit No. 5 Xavier at 8:30 p.m.
  5. LSU and Ben Simmons will pay a visit to the best team in the SEC, No. 10 Texas A&M, at 9:00 p.m.

THE REST OF THE TOP 25

  • Northwestern at No. 7 Maryland, 8:00 p.m.
  • Houston at No. 8 SMU, 9:00 p.m.
  • Illinois at No. 25 Indiana 7:00 p.m.

NOTABLES

  • N.C. State at Pitt, 8:00 p.m.
  • UNLV at Utah State, 9:00 p.m.