St. John's has yet to win a Big East contest this season and will take a 15-game losing streak into Saturday night's tilt with No. 1 Villanova at Wells Fargo Center.
Despite the long odds, Chris Mullin's team has an opportunity to pull off what would be a tremendous upset less than a week after the Wildcats (21-3, 11-1 Big East) were installed as the No. 1 team in the nation.
"I always talk about it being an opportunity," Mullin said Thursday on the Big East conference call. "That only comes if you play hard, unselfish, have good energy and are mentally focused on our game plan and know the personnel. Then you give yourself a chance to seize that opportunity. The preparation is so important leading up to the game. You have to put the work in to let yourself play free."