For the ranked teams in the Big East, Saturday's basketball action was a disaster. The No. 1 Syracuse Orange were the only ranked team that emerged without a loss when they defeated the No. 20 Marquette Golden Eagles. Syracuse is also the only Big East team without a conference loss. The No. 8 Connecticut Huskies lost to the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. The No. 9 Georgetown Hoyas lost to the West Virginia Mountaineers. The No. 10 Louisville Cardinals lost to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. In other games, the St. John's Red Storm defeated the Cincinnati Bearcats and the Seton Hall Pirates defeated the Providence Friars.
No. 1 Syracuse 73, No. 20 Marquette 63: Syracuse looked to be cruising to a victory after the first half when they took a 37-19 lead into the locker room. The Golden Eagles didn't go away without a fight. In the second half, they chopped the big deficit down to four with under five minutes to play. Dion Waiters blocked Darius Johnson-Odom 's three-pointer and raced down to the court for a layup to give the Orange the breathing room they would need to stay perfect on the season. Waiters finished with 12 points, 7 assists, 4 rebounds, 3 steals and the crucial block. Kris Joseph led Syracuse with 17 points. Brandon Triche chipped in 16 points. Johnson-Odom led Marquette with 19 points. Jae Crowder had 15 points for the Golden Eagles. Junior Cadougan had all 10 of his points for Marquette in the second half.
Rutgers 67, No. 8 UConn 60: After having previously defeated No. 10 Florida, Rutgers played the role of giant-killer for the second time this season when they took down No. 8 UConn on Saturday. Big East teams take notice, it might be hard to win at the RAC this season. The last Rutgers win over UConn came in 2002. How did they pull it off? Much like the Florida game, the Rutgers defensive intensity forced plenty of turnovers. UConn shot only 37.7% from the field and turned the ball over 20 times in the loss. The Huskies were unable to pull away in the first half and only had a two-point halftime lead. When the second half started, Rutgers went on a quick 8-0 run to take the lead. UConn briefly regained the lead but couldn't sustain it. Rutgers was 22-27 from the free throw line on the night to help them close out UConn down the stretch. Rutgers' upset bid was led by 19 points from Eli Carter and 14 points from Myles Mack. Shabazz Napier had 23 for the Huskies and Andre Drummond posted a double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds. They also combined for 11 of the 20 turnovers.
West Virginia 74, No. 9 Georgetown 62: The Hoyas were on an 11-game win streak before the loss to West Virginia. Georgetown only trailed at halftime 29-27 and had held Darryl Bryant to just 2-8 shooting. Bryant caught fire in the second half, scoring 19 of his game-high 25 points. Kevin Jones posted his 11th double-double with 22 points and 16 rebounds for the Mountaineers. Georgetown was just 2-14 from behind the arc and couldn't score with the Mountaineers which shot 50% from the floor (60% in the second half). The most surprising aspect of this game was the West Virginia free throw shooting. The Mountaineers came into the game as one of the league's worst teams from the charity stripe but hit 10 in a row during the last 2 minutes to close out the game. Hollis Thompson scored 20 for the Hoyas. Henry Sims and Jason Clark pitched in 10 points.
Notre Dame 67, No. 10 Louisville 65, 2 OT: The Irish were not good away from home this year and lost all six times until Saturday. When Notre Dame and Louisville meet up, there is an overtime period more often than not in recent times. There were two overtimes on Saturday. Notre Dame shot poorly, just 31.7% for the game. They were able to stay in the game and win it by keeping the rebounding battle close and by forcing 18 Louisville turnovers. Notre Dame also hit their free throws while the Cardinals squandered theirs. Eric Atkins, who finished with 15 points, had two shots from the free throw line to win it for the Irish at the end of the first overtime. He hit one to send the game to a second overtime. Atkins redeemed himself in double overtime by scoring the last six Notre Dame points. He also made both of his free throws. Jack Cooley led Notre Dame with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Kyle Kuric and Chane Behanan both had double-doubles for Louisville with 17 points and 10 rebounds apiece. Guards Chris Smith, Peyton Siva, Kevin Ware and Russ Smith only had 13 combined points for the Cards.
Seton Hall 66, Providence 57: The Pirates continued their quest for a Top 25 spot with another Big East win. This one was not as easy as they would have liked. Providence was only down three points at halftime. With 3:40 remaining in the game, they were down just one and on a 10-1 run. Jordan Theodore took over and scored seven of his 14 points in the last 3:23 to help Seton hall seal the win. Fuquan Edwin posted a career-high 24 points for Seton Hall. Edwin, the nation's steal leader, got 5 more in the game. Herb Pope had another double-double for Seton Hall with 11 points and 10 boards. Vincent Council led Providence with 23 points and 9 rebounds.
St. John's 57, Cincinnati 55: The Bearcats had won seven in a row before the game. After the first half they had a 25-22 lead. Then St. John's stormed out of the break on a 21-3 run. Cincinnati responded with an amazing comeback attempt. They had the game tied at 55 with 9 seconds to play on a Jeremiah Davis three-pointer. Maurice Harkless stole the win for the Red Storm with a put back shot at the buzzer. The defense of St. John's held Cincy to just 26.3% shooting. However, the Red Storm were careless with the ball and kept the Bearcats in the game by turning it over 19 times, 11 times in the first half. Harkless finished the game 14 points, 14 rebounds and 3 blocks. D`Angelo Harrison led the Red Storm with 18 points. Sean Kilpatrick scored 21 points to lead Cincinnati. Yancy Gates was the only other Bearcat to score in double figures with 10.
There was only one game on the schedule today. Villanova defeated DePaul 87-71.