"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Tuesday, March 02, 2021

Big East Rooting Guide

Of the major leagues, perhaps none needs NCAA credits this year than the Big East. Last year, the Big East was in line for 7 bids, with three teams on the top three seed lines, meaning they would have been favored to reach the second weekend of play. Obviously all the money the league would've received went away with no tournament. The bigger problem is that most Big East schools are not state schools, which means they rely more heavily on that money than teams in the Big 10, Big 12, and other leagues that feature primarily state schools. It also means the Big East really needs every credit they can get this year. Which brings us to the bubble, where the Big East currently has 5 teams in, but 3 of them are still on the bubble. So what needs to happen to make sure Xavier, Connecticut, and Seton Hall all get in for the good of the entire league? Let's take a look:
Tuesday, March 2
Marquette at DePaul: The best thing for the league would be a big Marquette win. From a NET perspective, Marquette getting into the top-75 would insure they are a Q1 win on the road and Q2 win at home. Since just about everyone beat Marquette in Milwaukee and most that took losses did so at home, having MU in the top-75 would help the league.
Xavier at Georgetown: The Musketeers still haven't secured a bid. The win over Creighton really helped, but they can't afford to add bad losses, so cheer for them to beat Georgetown, who has no at-large hopes.
Wednesday, March 3
Connecticut at Seton Hall: The Hall is right on the cut line. I have a feeling UConn's 8-2 record with James Bouknight might give them a little more leeway, whereas Seton Hall really can't afford to lose before the Big East Tournament.
Providence at St. John's: A close game would probably be best for everyone involved. Neither team is in the at-large mix. Providence is #79 in the NET, St. John's is #73, so ideally for the league we want both to finish top-75 to get all their league games into Quadrant 2. 
Creighton at Villanova: Both teams are locked into the field. The best thing for the league is to get as high of seeding as possible. Villanova could still get to a 2-seed, and losing this wouldn't really hurt Creighton. Cheer for the Wildcats.
Saturday, March 6
Xavier at Marquette: While I don't urge any Marquette fans to cheer against their team (I won't), this is another game the Musketeers and Big East need to cement a bid. The best thing for the league is a Xavier win, though personally I want to see Theo, Jamal, and Koby go out with a win on Senior Night.
Georgetown at Connecticut: If UConn goes 1-1 this week, I think they're in. Beat the Hoyas, secure a bid, it's that simple.
Villanova at Providence: We should all want 'Nova to win because Providence has no real at-large hopes, but this being a 1-2 point game would be best so Providence moves up in the NET so Villanova gets not just the win, but also allows the win to move to Q1.

Butler at Creighton: A healthy victory would be best for Creighton. Butler is unlikely to move up or down in the Quadrants, so Creighton winning big and boosting their own computer profiles would be best.

Seton Hall at St. John's: Ideally, a 1-point Seton Hall win would be best. Get the needed win for the Pirates while hopefully keeping St. John's in the NET top-75.

Let's get on with the S-Curve:

Last Four Byes: Louisville, Connecticut, Boise State, VCU

Last Four In: Colorado State, Seton Hall, Georgia Tech, Drake

First Four Out: Stanford, Michigan State, Mississippi, Memphis, Utah State

Next Four Out: Duke, St. Louis, SMU, Minnesota 

Multi-bid Leagues

Big 10: 8

Big 12: 7

ACC: 7

SEC: 6

Big East: 5

Pac-12: 4

Mountain West: 3

American: 2

Atlantic-10: 2

MVC: 2

WCC: 2

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