Round 1 goes to Rutgers.
It was one of those nights that Rutgers fans have been looking for all season.
The Scarlet Knights played smart, smart offense and got the ball inside. DePaul's defense is, well, DePaul-like, and Rutgers made them pay. Wally Judge tied the Big East Tournament record going 9 for 9 from the field and scoring 20. He tied Craig Smith of Boston College and Ricky Wright of Villanova. Judge also had 10 rebounds.
Big time. Rutgers fans have been looking for this all year.
This was a game Rutgers needed to have. A blowout.
In fact, it should have been an even bigger win, but Rutgers--despite 59% shooting--gave it up 11 times in the first half.
And now they face Notre Dame. This is a step forward. After Pernetti's vote of confidence, the Scarlet Knights showed they believe in Mike Rice and played for him. It was probably the best two halves of the season for Rutgers.
Notre Dame is step two on the Rutgers revenge tour. They have to control tempo and keep the good feelings going. Nothing to lose here. Leave it all on the floor. Rutgers gave the Fighting Irish everything they could handle early in the Big East season, as the game came down to the final seconds.
Now they have the Irish in their sites again.
Can Rutgers find some more magic?
Find out tomorrow night!