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TODAY: USF AT RUTGERS

WHEN/WHERE: 2; Louis Brown Athletic Center; Piscataway, N.J.

RADIO: 620-AM.

RECORDS: USF 6-20, 0-13 Big East; Rutgers 15-12, 5-9.

COACHES: USF - Robert McCullum (27-56, third season; 71-101 overall); Rutgers - Gary Waters (75-73, fifth season; 167-133).

NOTABLE: The schools meet for the second time in eight days, with Rutgers getting an easy 65-51 win in Tampa on Feb. 18. Rutgers, tied with St. John's for 12th in the league standings with two games to play, needs a strong finish to lock up a spot in the Big East tournament. The Knights' final conference game is March 5 at St. John's, though Louisville and Providence are 5-8 and could slip below them in the standings. Last time they saw Rutgers, the Bulls couldn't contain Quincy Douby, the Big East's leading scorer at 24.8 points per game. The only offense the Bulls had was from center Solomon Jones (19 points, 11 rebounds), but he's one week removed from a knee injury that limited him to three points and three rebounds in a loss to Providence. Not only will the Bulls need a healthy Jones, but they need more from senior guard James Holmes. He went 3-for-17 from the field the last time the teams met. With two ranked opponents (Connecticut and Georgetown) left on the schedule after today, Rutgers represents USF's best shot at avoiding a winless Big East season. What's worse, Howard University beat Florida A&M to snap its 14-game losing streak, so USF has the second-longest skid in the nation, trumped only by Jacksonville's 23-game streak.

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