Tuesday, March 3, 2015: Georgetown at #21 Butler (6pm Central, Fox Sports 1) - Potentially on the line here: the #2 seed in the Big East tournament. Villanova's already locked up #1, so there's no mystery there. But Butler's at #2 right now at 11-5, while Georgetown and Providence are lagging behind at 10-6. It doesn't matter who wins, but the winner might have the leg up on that precious protected seed. Butler has won two straight and might be looking for revenge for a 61-59 loss in Washington, D.C., earlier this season. The Hoyas, meanwhile, had a three game win streak snapped, and snapped badly on Saturday when they got absolutely shelled by St. John's.
Saturday, March 7, 2015: #21 Butler at #24 Providence (11am Central, Fox Sports Networks) - If that game didn't do enough to settle the #2 seed, this one surely will. If there's a game between two ranked teams in your conference, it's gotta make your list of the top games for that week, so this was a no brainer. The Friars have won three of their last four games, and the loss was to Villanova. They'll have to get through a Wednesday roadie at Seton Hall before hosting the Bulldogs for Senior Night.
Saturday, March 7, 2015: St. John's at #4 Villanova (1pm Central, Fox) - And then, this. As a neutral party, what's better for the conference: St. John's pulling the upset and guaranteeing themselves a spot in the NCAA tournament or Villanova hammering down one final nail in their resume to earn a #1 seed in the NCAAs? I can be convinced either direction. Villanova hasn't lost since January 19th, and they haven't lost at home at all this season. The Red Storm have won six of their last seven games to launch themselves back into the national conversation.
The Big East Women's Basketball Game(s) Of The Week
Their regular season is actually over already, as they give everyone a little bit short of a week to prepare for the conference tournament starting on Saturday. Thus, I'm highlighting the entire tournament in this slot this week.
The event gets started with a Saturday afternoon doubleheader with #8 Marquette playing #9 Providence and #7 Xavier taking on #10 Georgetown, with both games being broadcast on the Big East Digital Network. Sunday features a quadruple-header on Fox Sports 2. Top seed Seton Hall takes on the 8/9 winner, #4 St. John's and #5 Creighton square off, #2 DePaul snags the winner of the 7/10 game, and finally, #3 Villanova and #6 Butler close things out. The semifinals will be on Monday night, with one game on FS2 and the other on FS1, while the title game will be played on Tuesday night on FS1.
The Worst American Athletic Conference Game Of The Week
Sunday, March 8, 2015: Memphis at Cincinnati (11am Central, CBS) - This gets the nod for two reasons. First, Memphis was the team that the Big East added to replace West Virginia, so this is just a sad reminder of the kind of conference that we could have had if football wasn't a big bag of dumb jerks. Second, and slightly more important, this game will air on CBS on Sunday. That's not a bad thing, obviously, even if Josh Pastner and Memphis are careening out of control at this point. The reason this game being on CBS is bad is because it's scheduled for the two hours directly before CBS airs the Missouri Valley Conference Championship game. If we're all lucky, that game will be a rematch of Wichita State and Northern Iowa, and I SWEAR TO ALL THAT IS HOLY, if Memphis-Cincinnati interferes with my ability to watch the Arch Madness title game, I am not responsible for what happens.