Big East Tournament 2012 Schedule: Kris Joseph and Players Needing Huge Games

T.J. McaloonContributorMarch 9, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 08:  Kris Joseph #32 of the Syracuse Orange handles the ball against Jeremy Lamb #3 of the Connecticut Huskies during the quarterfinals of the Big East Men's Basketball Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 8, 2012 in New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The Big East tournament is down to its final four teams who all have a great chance at reaching the Big East tournament finals. 

However, these three players have to step up in their semifinals game, or else they will see their season come to an end. 


Syracuse Orange: Kris Joseph

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - FEBRUARY 19:  Myles Mack #4 of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights attempts to control a loose ball against Kris Joseph #32 of the Syracuse Orange in the second half at Louis Brown Athletic Center on February 19, 2012 in New Brunswick, New Jer
Chris Chambers/Getty Images

Joseph led the Orange starters with 10 points in their quarterfinal win against Connecticut, 58-55. However, he shot a horrible 1-of-8 from the field in 38 minutes of action. 

This bad game was not the norm for Joseph as he averaged 14 points and a 43.8 field-goal percentage during Syracuse’s regular season. Joseph is capable of putting up 20 or more points, as he has done so five times. 

Joseph should come back to his normal stat line against Cincinnati. Against the Bearcats earlier this year he posted a stat line of 17 points, six rebounds and a shooting percentage of 72.7. 

If he doesn’t get back up to those numbers, it could bring to an end to the Orange’s Big East run. 


Syracuse Orange: Dion Waters

Waters broke out against Connecticut carrying the Orange over the Huskies with 18 points on 8-of-11 shooting. Waters' 18 points off of the bench was the shot in the arm that the Orange needed to continue their Big East tournament run into the semifinals. 

When Syracuse faced off against Cincinnati in January, he was held to only 12 minutes of action and two points from five shots. 

After Waters' huge game in the quarterfinals, he should expect to see some more playing time against the Bearcats. Coming into the Big East tournament, Waters played in 20 or more minutes in three of their last four games. 


Cincinnati Bearcats: Yancy Gates

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 08:  Dion Dixon #3 and Yancy Gates #34 of the Cincinnati Bearcats reacts after defeating the Georgetown Hoyas during the quarterfinals of the Big East Men's Basketball Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 8, 2012 in New York C
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Gates had a career game helping the Bearcats over the Georgetown Hoyas in their quarterfinal match. His 23 points carried Cincinnati to a double overtime 73-70 victory. The 23 points was double what Gates normally would average during the season. 

Coming into the Big East tournament, Gates didn’t score more than 20 points in any of the Bearcats' games. His highest point total was 18 points, which he scored in two separate games.  

Against Syracuse this year, Gates put up a strong 16-point performance shooting 58.3 percent from the field against a good Orange defense. 

If Gates can go off again for over 20 points, he will give Cincinnati a great chance to upset the No. 1 seed in the Big East tournament. 


These three players have to have a huge game today. If not they could let their team down resulting in being eliminated just one game from the finals.