We’re back up and running!
Christmas and New Year’s are officially in the rear view mirror at this point, so we’re jumping straight into the “everybody plays a league game twice a week” portion of the college basketball schedule. Sometimes that schedule gives you teams in the top half playing teams in the bottom half, and those aren’t necessarily the most interesting games. There seems to be a bit of that going on this week, so it is what it is. Still, there’s a bunch of notable games in the Big East on the board for the week, so let’s get right into it!
Wednesday, January 4: #24 St. John’s Red Storm at Seton Hall Pirates (6pm Central, FloSports) — It’s the nationally ranked Red Storm at 4-0 in the league going on the road to face their geographically closest league rival.... who happens to be 4-1 in the league with only a loss to UConn. “How long can the Johnnies stay perfect on the year” is a big question right now, not just in the league but nationally speaking since Joe Tartamella has his squad at 13-0 overall and a showdown with the Huskies looming on the horizon next week.
Wednesday, January 4: Marquette Golden Eagles at DePaul Blue Demons (7pm Central, FloSports) — Megan Duffy’s Golden Eagles have lost three straight, including two straight in league play to drop to 2-3 in the Big East and 9-5 overall. They need a win in a bad way, and DePaul’s not inclined to let them have it. Aneesah Morrow and the Blue Demons are coming off a home loss to Creighton and have dropped two of their last three after a five game winning streak that turned their season around a little bit. In short: Both teams need this win if they want to be playing in the postseason.
Wednesday, January 4: #4 Connecticut Huskies at RV Providence Friars (7:30pm Central, FS1) — Yep, the Huskies going on the road to bounce back from their first loss in league play and visiting the still unbeaten through four games Friars, just like everyone expected at the start of the season.... or even a month ago. That’s wild, huh? Is the wilder part about it that Providence is not ranked and doesn’t have a real argument for being in the AP top 25?
Saturday, January 7: RV Creighton Bluejays at #4 Connecticut Huskies (11am Central, Fox) — I guess the good news is that this was always going to be a rough stretch for UConn? At Xavier, at Providence, home vs Creighton? It’s not exactly the rough stretch that it looked like it might be when the schedules were announced in the fall, just a different kind of rough stretch. Creighton has won two straight since Ryan Kalkbrenner got back into the lineup, but I don’t think that anyone is confusing home games against Butler and DePaul with their previous contests against Arizona or Texas with him available. This could be a pivotal game for both teams, particularly since Creighton has to deal with Seton Hall earlier in the week.
Saturday, January 7: #18 Xavier Musketeers at Villanova Wildcats (3:30pm Central, FS1) — Couple of things in play here. This is Xavier’s only game of the week, so it’s also their first game since that big home win over Connecticut. That means you’ve got that combination of “how do they handle success” and “how do they handle a week off” working for this one. It’s also a trip to Finneran Pavilion, and Shaka Smart is the only visiting coach to have won there since November 2018.... and the only visiting Big East coach to have won there since February 2017. This clearly isn’t that kind of Villanova team, even with Cam Whitmore in the lineup, but it’s still not going to be a walk in the park for Souley Boum and Friends.
Sunday, January 8: DePaul Blue Demons at #5 Connecticut Huskies (12:30pm Central, SNY) — This is an interesting game not because I think that DePaul is coming in rolling, and they’re clearly not as mentioned in the blurb about their game against Marquette. This will be UConn’s third game of the week after going Tuesday/Thursday on the road against Butler and Xavier. The Huskies are already dealing with a game-to-game issue of figuring out who is and is not available for a variety of reasons, and playing three games in six days can’t exactly lighten that burden. This may be a spot where everything just catches up to UConn.
Sunday, January 8: Marquette Golden Eagles at #25 Creighton Bluejays (3pm Central, CBS Sports Network) — First of all, a national television broadcast for Big East women’s hoops is neat. Second, all that stuff I said about Marquette and Jordan King needing a win in the worst way for the DePaul game, and it still holds true whether or not they beat the Blue Demons.... and doubles if they lose. Third, Creighton’s win at on Saturday snapped a three game losing streak and a stretch of four losses in their last five. That stretch isn’t as bad as it sounds since it was St. John’s, Arkansas, Stanford, and UConn handing out the losses, but Emma Ronsiek’s squad is still going to be on the hunt for quality wins to balance that out.
Here’s the full men’s basketball schedule for the week!
Big East MBB Schedule: Week 9
|Tuesday, January 3||RV Marquette at St. John's||5:30 PM||FS1|
|Seton Hall at RV Creighton||7:30 PM||FS1|
|Wednesday, January 4||Villanova at Georgetown||5:30 PM||FS1|
|#4 Connecticut at RV Providence||7:30 PM||FS1|
|DePaul at Butler||8:00 PM||CBS Sports Network|
|Saturday, January 7||RV Creighton at #4 Connecticut||11:00 AM||Fox|
|St. John's at RV Providence||11:00 AM||FS1|
|Georgetown at RV Marquette||1:00 PM||FS1|
|#18 Xavier at Villanova||3:30 PM||FS1|
|Butler at Seton Hall||7:30 PM||FS1|
Here’s the full women’s basketball schedule for the week!
Big East WBB Schedule: Week 9
|Tuesday, January 3||#5 Connecticut at Butler||6:00 PM||SNY|
|Wednesday, January 4||#24 St. John's at Seton Hall||6:00 PM||FloSports|
|Providence at #25 Creighton||6:00 PM||FloSports|
|Georgetown at RV Villanova||6:00 PM||FloSports|
|Marquette at DePaul||7:00 PM||FloSports|
|Thursday, January 5||#5 Connecticut at Xavier||6:00 PM||SNY|
|Sunday, January 8||Seton Hall at Providence||12:00 PM||FloSports|
|DePaul at #5 Connecticut||12:30 PM||SNY|
|Xavier at #24 St. John's||1:00 PM||FloSports|
|Butler at RV Villanova||1:00 PM||FloSports|
|Marquette at #25 Creighton||3:00 PM||CBS Sports Network|