If I wanted to, we could get through this entire What To Watch by only talking about Big East men’s basketball games against high major foes. That’s mostly because of the Gavitt Tipoff Games this week. But, Marquette, Creighton, and Villanova all get their multi-team event going this week, so that helps pad the list with quality opponents. As always when it comes to the WTW for FEAST WEEK~!, we will not list possible future matchups in the highlight rundown. It’s not a good use of time to say “well maaaaaaaybe Marquette plays West Virginia” and then talk about the Mountaineers. But it ends up meaning that there are even more highlights coming this week than the ones we’re actually spotlighting.
And that’s pretty cool.
Let’s get into it!
Monday, November 15: Marquette Golden Eagles vs #10 Illinois Fighting Illini (6pm Central, FS1) - I’m writing this on Sunday, so Illinois is still #11 in the country at the moment. There’s a chance they pop into the top 10 with #10 Kentucky losing. I think it’s important to highlight a (possible) top 10 opponent on the schedule. Illinois is 2-0 on the year after easily skating past Jackson State and Arkansas State without preseason all-everything center Kofi Cockburn who remains suspended by the NCAA for this game. Andre Curbelo missed the opener and played just 19 minutes in the next one for head coach Brad Underwood, while Trent Frazier also missed the opener before going for 12 points and 4 rebounds next time out. It’ll be the first high major test of the year for both squads, although Marquette has been pushed a lot more than Illinois in those first two games.
Monday, November 15: RV DePaul Blue Demons at #23 Texas A&M Aggies (7pm Central, SEC Network+) - This is a women’s contest, and it’ll be a hoot. Both the Blue Demons and the Aggies cruised easily in their two games so far this season, and now things ramp up in a hurry as they both face the first team on their schedule with major NCAA hopes.
Tuesday, November 16: Seton Hall Pirates at #4 Michigan Wolverines (8pm Central, FS1) - If we’re highlighting a potential top 10 game as I write on Sunday, we’re definitely highlighting a definite top 10 game. Michigan moved to 2-0 with an easy win over Prairie View A&M on Saturday after opening with a 12 point win over Buffalo. The Pirates crushed a crushable Fairleigh Dickinson squad in their opener and then absolutely rolled Yale, a favorite in the Ivy League this season, on Sunday for their last tune-up before heading to Ann Arbor.
Wednesday, November 17: Butler Bulldogs vs RV Michigan State Spartans (6pm Central, FS1) - Michigan State was unranked to start the season and after getting clonked by Kansas in the Champions Classic, they’re clearly going to need a win or 12 to get into the AP poll. This one is at Hinkle Fieldhouse, where Butler has struggled with both IUPUI and Troy so far this season. Believe it or not, KenPom sees this one as nearly a coin flip between the two sides.
Wednesday, November 17: RV St. John’s Red Storm at RV Indiana Hoosiers (8pm Central, FS1) - The Johnnies have rolled through their first two games of the year, so this will be the first stiff test that they see as well as their first road contest of the season. The Hoosiers are favored here, although they struggled with Eastern Michigan in the debut of Mike Woodson as head coach before dispatching Northern Illinois relatively easily.
Thursday, November 18: Xavier Musketeers vs #19 Ohio State Buckeyes (5:30pm Central, FS1) - I think it’s pretty damn sweet that the Musketeers are getting not just Ohio State but a ranked Ohio State team on the Cintas Center floor. With that said, XU is going to have to play a lot better than they did against Niagara and Kent State if they want to beat their in-state rivals. Then again, Ohio State struggled with Akron and that same Niagara team.
Thursday, November 18: Marquette Golden Eagles vs Ole Miss Rebels (6pm Central, ESPN2) - The Golden Eagles get the nod for the first FEAST WEEK~! game of the year for the Big East as they face off against Kermit Davis’ squad in the first round of the Charleston Classic. Ole Miss cruised past New Orleans and Charleston Southern in their first two games of the season, so hopefully MU can give them a stern test while coming off the Illinois game earlier in the week.
Saturday, November 19: #5 Villanova Wildcats vs #17 Tennessee Volunteers (Noon Central, ESPN News) - Well, no rest for the wicked, huh? After losing in overtime to UCLA very late on Friday night, Villanova jumps back into the ranked team fray here after hosting Howard earlier in the week. The Vols have allowed exactly 62 points while wrecking both Tennessee Martin and East Tennessee State in their first two games. Oh, and VU has to play another ranked team — maybe a top ten team in Purdue! — on Sunday, too, as this is up at Mohegan Sun Casino in the Hall of Fame Tipoff Classic.
Here’s the full men’s basketball schedule as we know it for the week. We’ll try to update as necessary for the three multi-team events.
Big East Men’s Basketball Schedule: Week 2
|Monday, November 15||Marquette vs #10 Illinois||6:00 PM||FS1|
|Providence at Wisconsin||8:00 PM||FS1|
|Tuesday, November 16||#4 Villanova vs Howard||5:30 PM||FS2|
|Creighton at Nebraska||6:00 PM||FS1|
|Georgetown vs American||7:30 PM||FS2|
|RV Seton Hall at #4 Michigan||8:00 PM||FS1|
|Wednesday, November 17||#23 Connecticut vs LIU||5:30 PM||FS2|
|Butler vs RV Michigan State||6:00 PM||FS1|
|RV St. John's at RV Indiana||8:00 PM||FS1|
|Thursday, November 18||RV Xavier vs #19 Ohio State||5:30 PM||FS1|
|Providence vs New Hampshire||5:30 PM||FS2|
|Marquette vs Ole Miss (Charleston Classic)||6:00 PM||ESPN2|
|DePaul vs RV Rutgers||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Friday, November 19||Creighton vs Brown (Paradise Jam)||2:15 PM||Watch ESPN/ESPN3|
|Georgetown vs Siena||5:30 PM||FS2|
|Marquette vs West Virginia (Charleston Classic)||6:00 PM||ESPN2|
|Saturday, November 20||#23 Connecticut vs Binghamton||11:00 AM||FS1|
|#5 Villanova vs #17 Tennessee (Tipoff Classic)||Noon||ESPN News|
|RV St. John's vs Fairleigh Dickinson||5:00 PM||FS2|
|DePaul vs Western Illinois||7:00 PM||FS2|
|Sunday, November 21||#5 Villanova vs #6 Purdue (Tipoff Classic)||Noon||ABC|
|RV Xavier vs Norfolk State||11:00 AM||FS1|
|Creighton vs RV Colorado State (Paradise Jam)||4:45 PM||Watch ESPN/ESPN3|
|Marquette vs #22 St. Bonaventure (Charleston Classic)||6:30 PM||ESPN|