Well, we’ve certainly had an interesting week in the Big East, haven’t we? It all continues on with another fun batch of league games, and odds are that everything will look much different when we convene a week from now to look at next week, too.
Let’s dive right in, shall we?
Tuesday, January 8: #24 St. John’s Red Storm at Villanova Wildcats (6pm Central, FS1) - The Wildcats are the last remaining unbeaten team in Big East play, and yes, they’ve only played twice so far. Everyone else has at least one loss, although their opponent and guest for this game has a more compelling case than normal to say “we should be undefeated!” The Big East already announced that there was a refereeing error in St. John’s loss to Seton Hall to start league play, and it certainly looked like if play had continued without Michael Stephens blowing his whistle, St. John’s would have escaped with the W. But it is a loss nonetheless, and St. John’s gets a chance to drag Villanova down into the defeated muck with everyone else here.
Wednesday, January 19: #21 Marquette Golden Eagles at Creighton Bluejays (6pm Central, CBS Sports Network) - If you care about such things, Marquette and Creighton are currently part of a three-way tie for second place in KenPom.com’s Big East standings projections, with both teams along with St. John’s trending towards an 11-7 record in the conference. As such, this presents both clubs with a fantastic opportunity to nudge the other out of their way as everyone jostles for the top of the standings this season. Creighton is coming off of something of a shocking loss at Butler on Saturday, while Marquette has yet to prove that they can play well on the road this year.
Saturday, January 12: Seton Hall Pirates at #21 Marquette Golden Eagles (1pm Central, FS1) - As we sit here at the start of the week, questions abound for both squads. We already outlined Marquette’s issues in the previous blurb, but this game will take place back in the friendly confines of Fiserv Forum, where the Golden Eagles are undefeated since moving in. No matter what happens in their mid-week tangle with Creighton, this game still looms large for them, as the Pirates are part of the KenPom three-way tie. Of course, Seton Hall is likely only in that three-way tie because they just lost to DePaul on Sunday afternoon, and as we all know: Don’t lose to DePaul. Don’t get me wrong, it was a close game, 75-74, and it was on the road, but if the Pirates were really the kind of team that beat Kentucky and Maryland since the start of December, they shouldn’t have dropped that one. SHU will host Butler on Wednesday night before making their way westward, and it’s not exactly a guarantee that they won’t have two straight losses at that point.
Sunday, January 13: Villanova Wildcats at Creighton Bluejays (11am Central, Fox) - Go back and re-read the Villanova and Creighton sections from earlier in the article, knowing now that the two sides will square off in Omaha after each of those games. Lends a certain amount of extra tension and importance for both of those contests as well as this one, doesn’t it?
Here’s the full slate for the week!
Big East What To Watch: Week 10
|Tuesday, Jan. 8||#24 St. John's at Villanova||6:00 PM||FS1|
|Wednesday, Jan. 9||Georgetown at Xavier||5:30 PM||FS1|
|#21 Marquette at Creighton||6:00 PM||CBS Sports Network|
|Butler at Seton Hall||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Saturday, Jan. 12||Providence at Georgetown||11:00 AM||FS1|
|Seton Hall at #21 Marquette||1:00 PM||FS1|
|DePaul at #24 St. John's||5:00 PM||CBS Sports Network|
|Sunday, Jan. 13||Butler at Xavier||11:00 AM||CBS Sports Network|
|Villanova at Creighton||11:00 AM||Fox|