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Big East Coast Bias Power Rankings: Villanova holds off Xavier for top spot

Villanova narrowly edges Xavier for the top spot after a 60-40 split of first-place votes.

What a week for the Big East basketball. The conference took home FOUR preseason tournament titles, and came close to a fifth before Michigan State pulled away from Providence.

For the third straight week, Villanova topped our rankings after a perfect week in the NIT Season Tip-Off, but Xavier made a close run following an impressive showing in the Advocare Invitational. And although Providence and Butler didn't garner any top votes, both teams are in great shape heading into December. With as many as four teams looking to crack the Top 25, let's pop open this week's Power Rankings and see how each team fared over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Rank Team/Record Trending Comments


--- What else is there to really say? If I’m slightly concerned about one thing, it’s that Daniel Ochefu is going through a bit of a dry spell right now. With that said, their defense is elite. Jalen Brunson has been living up to the hype and then some, and Josh Hart is emerging as expected. I’m excited to see them against Virginia and Oklahoma in the near future. - Christopher Novak



I was so tempted to put Xavier at the top of the rankings this week. X has been incredible through their first seven games and whooped USC and Dayton in back-to-back games in the Advocare Invitational. They can beat you in so many different ways and have been awesome on the boards. X is as legit as they come. - Christopher Novak



Providence went 3-1 this past week and opened some eyes out in California with a trip to the championship game of the Wooden Legacy Tournament. The Friars fell to 3rd-ranked Michigan State in a game that was a lot close than the final score might indicate, backing up Friday's semifinal win over 11th-ranked Arizona. Ben Bentil (20.6 PPG, 6.0 RPG) was named to the All-Tournament team for his excellent week. Kris Dunn, another All-Tournament performer, played arguably his most impressive 4 minutes of the season at the end of the Arizona game, where he scored or assisted on all of Providence's final 12 points to lead his team to victory. Providence beat a good Evansville team Thanksgiving night and knocked off giant killer NJIT on Monday. It would be surprising if Providence doesn't make their season debut in the top 25 on Monday. - Mike Hopkins




The Bulldogs had the majority of the week off after participating in last weekend's Puerto Rico Tip-Off, coming in as heavy favorites against visiting SIU-Edwardsville on Saturday. While the game ended up being far closer than expected, Kellen Dunham tied his career high scoring total with 32 points on 5-of-8 shooting from deep, and all five members of the starting lineup ended up scoring in double digits. It was business as usual for the Bulldogs, but with some big wins for other teams across the conference this week, they'll slide down a few spots this time around. - Mike Murtaugh



The Hoyas have no shame in being 2-3 right now with losses to Duke, Maryland and Radford by a combined eight points. That said, their margin for error is thin and they need to straight up handle their business from here on out. Syracuse is only getting better, and I can’t wait to see that match-up this Saturday. - Christopher Novak




What a difference a week makes for the Golden Eagles. Following an opening week in which they went 1-2, Marquette responded with two wins in the Legends Classic in Brooklyn, then a home win over Jackson State. Freshman Henry Ellenson has been as good as advertised so far. He leads the conference in rebounding (9.6 RPG) and is 7th in the conference in scoring (15.2 PPG) - Robert O'Neill



After a mighty impressive showing in Las Vegas that featured a tournament championship for Creighton, the Bluejays capped off the week with a convincing win over a relatively tough foe in Western Illinois. Senior big man Geoffrey Groselle has been dominant in his past two games leaving opposing coaches scrambling to find a reputable gameplan to shut down the Jays. With stellar play from their starting line, it appears that Creighton is beginning to put it all together and form a complete team that can win on any given night. With extensive depth on the bench and Ronnie Harrell back from injury, Creighton will be at full strength for the first time this season. The Bluejays will look to capitalize on their recent success in a fun-filled week ahead that features Arizona State on Wednesday and Missouri Valley replacement Loyola-Chicago on Saturday. - Alex Sindelar



One of the biggest surprises in the Big East continue to roll along as the Pirates knocked off the Georgia Bulldogs in their only game of the week to improve to 5-1. Led by a stellar sophomore class, if Kevin Willard is coaching for his job this season, he's off to a masterful start. - Robert O'Neill



The Johnnies finished under .500 in Maui but there was a lot to like with regards to team growth. Federico Mussini has been brilliant so far and has been the Red Storm’s best player. Chris Mullin has his work cut out for him against the tougher competition in the nation and in the conference, but the prospects for the future are right there for the taking. - Christopher Novak




Cold world. The Blue Demons won their one game this week (their Paradise Jam game against Norfolk State), but that's not enough to get them out of the cellar. Billy Garrett Jr. has been a bright spot. He's averaging 15.4 PPG, but only shooting 35%. - Robert O'Neill

Best Kobe Impression

After 20 years and countless memories, Kobe Bryant is done giving to the game of basketball, announcing his retirement at the end of this season. Vino might have aged, but the five-time champ has left an indelible mark on the NBA, and the minds of every kid who tried to emulate him.

Laker fan Kris Dunn has probably hit a few of Kobe's signatures in his driveway before.

Mamba is out, but the future of the game looks pretty good. (h/t The Cauldron)

Dab of the Week

Creighton sophomore Tyler Clement is a role player. His impact hasn't been felt on the court this season (he's averaging 9.5 minutes per game this month), but what he lacks in playing time, he makes up for in enthusiastic bench celebrations. Tyler got his moment to shine in Wednesday's Men Who Speak Up final against UMass.

Personally I think this kid is a hater. Tyler exhibits perfect form on his dab - the arm extension is key but he doesn't overdo the head nod into the elbow, something that plagues wannabe dabbers like Chris Berman and Dabo Sweeney (Frank Beamer, we'll give you a pass). Superb dabbing, Tyler. Keep dabbing on dem folks until your heart is content. (h/t @Damoose10)

Lob of the Week

Xavier's been impressive to start the season, and Remy Abell & Edmund Sumner are part of the reason why.

Lob City Ohio? Meh, the name is unoriginal and premature, but this is as sexy as a lob can get.