Eight of the ten teams in the Big East play twice in the final week of the season with Villanova and Butler only playing on Saturday when all ten league teams will be in action to close out the regular season. Many of the Big East members will still be jockeying for final seeding position for the Big East Tournament that begins on March 8th at Madison Square Garden. I’ll be doing this “Seed Watch” post one more time later in the week and there will be more detail about tiebreakers and scenarios in that final post before Saturday’s games. For now, I’ll give you the Big East Tournament bracket as it would be today, what a win for certain teams this past weekend means for the seeding outlook and then I’ll use Kenpom.com to predict the final standings and show you what that would look like after tiebreakers.
The first game of the tournament will be at 7pm on Wednesday, March 8th with another game that night at 9:30pm. The first round, quarterfinals and semifinals will be broadcast on FS1 and the finals will be broadcast on FOX.
Here is where we stand through games on 2/26/2017:
First round – Wednesday, March 8
|1||7:00 PM||#8 St. John’s vs. #9 Georgetown|
|2||9:30 PM||#7 Xavier vs. #10 DePaul|
Quarterfinals – Thursday, March 9
|3||12:00 PM||#1 Villanova vs. Winner of Game 1|
|4||2:30 PM||#4 Providence vs. #5 Seton Hall|
|5||7:00 PM||#2 Butler vs. Winner of Game 2|
|6||9:30 PM||#3 Creighton vs. #6 Marquette|
Semifinals – Friday, March 10
|7||6:30 PM||Winner of Game 3 vs. Winner of Game 4|
|8||9:00 PM||Winner of Game 5 vs. Winner of Game 6|
Championship – Saturday, March 11
|9||5:30 PM||Winner of Game 7 vs. Winner of Game 8|
Seed Movement Scenarios by Matchup
With the final week of Big East action kicking off Tuesday night let’s recap the dominoes that fell over the weekend and how Tuesday’s game impacts seeding for the Big East Tournament. Let’s get started.
#8 St. John’s: 12-16, 6-9 vs. #9 Georgetown: 14-14, 5-10
#8 St. John’s: 13-16, 7-9 vs. #9 Georgetown: 14-15, 5-11
This game meant very little to Georgetown and the Hoyas certainly played like it. St. John’s still holds an outside chance of sliding out of the first night and getting the 6 seed.
#7 Seton Hall: 17-10, 7-8 at #10 DePaul: 9-19, 2-13
#5 Seton Hall: 18-10, 8-8 at #10 DePaul: 9-20, 2-14
Seton Hall’s win over hapless DePaul on Saturday and the subsequent events of the rest of the day resulted in the Pirates sliding all the way up to the 5 seed and out of the first night of Big East action.
#1 Villanova: 26-3, 13-3 vs #3 Creighton: 22-6, 9-6
#1 Villanova: 27-3, 14-3 vs #3 Creighton: 22-7, 9-7
Villanova locked in their fourth straight regular season Big East title with their win over Creighton on Saturday. The Wildcats will head to Madison Square Garden as the #1 seed again regardless of the outcome of their final game on Saturday at Georgetown. Creighton’s loss brings them into danger of getting into a tie with one or more of the current 8-8 teams which could slide them out of the 3 seed. Having the 3 seed, or the 6 seed for the matter, means avoiding Villanova until the Big East Tournament finals. Being in the 4/5 game results in the winner most likely playing against the Wildcats in the semifinals on Friday.
#4 Marquette: 17-10, 8-7 vs. #6 Providence: 17-11, 7-8
#6 Marquette: 17-11, 8-8 vs. #4 Providence: 18-11, 8-8
Providence’s dramatic win over Marquette on Saturday flip-flopped the two teams in the standings after tiebreaker results give the Friars the edge over the other three teams with 8-8 league records.
The Friars have now won four straight games and are in the driver’s seat for both an NCAA Tournament bid and to choose their seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Golden Eagles have a difficult final week of action beginning on Wednesday when they travel to the Cintas Center to play Xavier. They finish the season by returning home to face Creighton on Saturday.
#2 Butler: 22-6, 11-5 vs. #5 Xavier: 18-10, 8-7
#2 Butler: 23-6, 12-5 vs. #7 Xavier: 18-11, 8-8
Butler locked up the 2 seed with their win in Cincinnati on Sunday while Xavier dropped from 5th to 7th in the Big East standings due to losing the head-to-head tiebreaker with Marquette. Butler is in excellent position to make a run at their first ever Big East Tournament title and improving their seed line placement in the NCAA Tournament. The Musketeers have now lost five straight games and are limping to the finish line.
This is an exercise to show you where teams would finish in the standings using Kenpom.com’s predicted result for their final game or two. Here is how Kenpom sees the final week of Big East play shaking out:
- Seton Hall beats Georgetown on Tuesday night, 73-69
- Creighton beats St. John’s on Tuesday night, 89-76
- Providence beats DePaul on Tuesday night, 73-61
- Xavier beats Marquette on Wednesday night, 81-78
- Villanova beats Georgetown on Saturday, 74-67
- St. John’s beats Providence on Saturday, 75-74
- Xavier beats DePaul on Saturday, 76-69
- Butler beats Seton Hall on Saturday, 76-66
- Marquette beats Creighton on Saturday, 84-82
Here’s how teams would shake out in the final standings after tiebreakers with Kenpom.com’s projected results through March 4th:
That’s it for this second edition of the 2016-17 Seed Watch. I’ll be doing this again later in the week to look at all the possible seeding scenarios that can play out on the league’s final Saturday of games with all ten teams in action.
Have questions, comments or concerns? Hit me up in the comments or on Twitter @pcbb1917