Ok, we’ve managed to get through the “may contain basketball content” opening weekend of the college basketball season, and now we’re officially on to the first full week of the schedule. Boy oh boy, do we have some games to watch this week, thanks to the Gavitt Tipoff Games pairing off the Big East and the Big Ten.
Monday, November 13: #14 Minnesota Golden Gophers at Providence Friars (5:30pm Central, FS1) - If you’re like me and you think that Providence is capable of winning the Big East this season, then this is a very important game. If PC is going to take a swing at unseating Villanova from their spot as the anointed favorite in the league, then they’re going to need to at least show that they’re capable of beating the Gophers. They get the advantage of hosting a top 15 team in their barn, and they need to take advantage of it.
Monday, November 13: #21 Oklahoma Sooners at RV DePaul Blue Demons (7pm Central, DePaulBlueDemons.com paid streaming) - Hey, we told you that if there was a women’s game to highlight, we are going to highlight it. If you get two ranked teams facing off, then that’s worth highlighting. There is a bit of an asterisk to this, though, as DePaul dropped their season opener — at home -- to Northern Colorado on Friday. That’s not great. Doug Bruno is going to need a much better effort from his team in order to get a win over the Sooners.
Tuesday, November 14: #19 Purdue Boilermakers at Marquette Golden Eagles (7:30pm Central, FS1) - The last time we saw Marquette in a Gavitt Game, they got smoked out of the building by Iowa. That came in the third game of the season after MU struggled in their first two outings and with multiple freshmen expected to carry the load. That’s not the case this time around, and with the Golden Eagles coming off Steve Wojciechowski’s first NCAA tournament appearance, they need to have a much better showing. However, Purdue might be a better team this year than Iowa was that year, and dealing with Isaac Haas and the unrelated Edwardses is going to be a tough ask for a still young Marquette team.
Wednesday, November 15: Creighton Bluejays at #20 Northwestern Wildcats (8pm Central, Big Ten Network) - Just when you thought you had escaped playing at the Rosemont Horizon forever, a gentleman’s agreement drags you back in. The luck of the draw of the Gavitt Games has foced the Jays to play at that dump out by the airport one more time thanks to the Wildcats spending the year there while Welsh-Ryan Arena on campus is renovated. Northwestern brings back pretty much everything from their first ever NCAA tournament team last season, and they should be a nightmare to play. We should get a good read on where the Bluejays are this season if they keep this one competitive.
Thursday, November 16: #15 Xavier Musketeers at Wisconsin Badgers (7:30pm Central, FS1) - After smashing Morehead State by 50+ in their opener, Xavier has KenPom’s #13 offense and #37 defense. This is a team that people rightfully believe can knock Villanova off their perch in the Big East, not to mention has Final Four potential. And yet, somehow, KenPom has them predicted to lose to a Wisconsin team that has just three players that played more than 250 minutes last season. Go forth and light the Badgers on fire, Xavier.
Friday, November 17: Providence Friars vs Virginia Tech Hokies OR Saint Louis Billikens (4pm OR 6:30pm Central, ESPN2) - This will be PC’s second game of the 2K Classic at Madison Square Garden. With an easy win over Washington the night before expected, and with Travis Ford in his second season at Saint Louis, this will probably be a game against a pretty good Virginia Tech team. If that’s how it shakes out, it will be the first real test of the season for VaTech, but the third game against a high major opponent in just five days for PC. We may know an awful lot about what Providence is made out of this season by the time Saturday morning rolls around.
Sunday, November 19: #11 Duke Blue Devils at Villanova Wildcats (12pm Central, Villanova.com paid streaming) - Hey, look, another ranked team playing a Big East women’s hoops team! Neat. It’s also a home game for the Big East squad, but this one is likely going to be tilted in the Blue Devils’ favor. With that said, Villanova’s incredibly patient style can be frustrating to go against, and VU did pick up one point in the preseason coaches poll. Can Adrianna Hahn and her teammates shock the world?
Here’s your full men’s basketball schedule for the upcoming week.
Big East Basketball Week 2
|Date||Game||Time (CT)||TV Network|
|Date||Game||Time (CT)||TV Network|
|Mon., Nov. 13||#14 Minnesota at Providence||5:30 PM||FS1|
|Delaware State at DePaul||7:00 PM||FS2|
|Rider at #15 Xavier||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Tues., Nov. 14||Nicholls State at #5 Villanova||5:30 PM||FS1|
|Central Connecticut at St. John's||5:30 PM||FS2|
|#19 Purdue at Marquette||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Wed., Nov. 15||Indiana at #22 Seton Hall||5:30 PM||FS1|
|Mount St. Mary's at Georgetown||6:00 PM||FS2|
|Butler at Maryland||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Creighton at #20 Northwestern||8:00 PM||Big Ten Network|
|Thurs., Nov. 16||Nebraska at St. John's||5:30 PM||FS1|
|#15 Xavier at Wisconsin||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Providence vs Washington (2K Classic)||8:30 PM||ESPN2|
|Fri., Nov. 17||Lafayette at #5 Villanova||7:00 PM||FS2|
|DePaul at Illinois||7:30 PM||Big Ten Network|
|Providence vs Virginia Tech/Saint Louis (2K Classic)||4pm/6:30pm||ESPN2|
|Sat., Nov. 18||Maryland Eastern Shore at Georgetown||11:00 AM||Fox Sports Regional|
|Furman at Butler||1:00 PM||FS2|
|NJIT at #22 Seton Hall||3:00 PM||FS2|