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Big East Coast Bias Power Rankings: Nova the favorites going into the Big East Tournament

The road to the NCAA Tournament makes its final stop in Madison Square Garden this weekend, as Villanova and Xavier look to secure top seeds, and other teams try to stop their bubble from bursting.

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Another Big East regular season is in the books, and for the third year in a row, it's Villanova holding the number one seed heading into the Big East tournament.

The Wildcats enter postseason play with a 27-4 record and appear primed to be a 1-seed in the NCAA Tournament with a strong showing this week in New York. Our voters reflect that feeling, naming Villanova the top team in the Big East before the tourney. Nova picked up every number one vote taken.....except for one.

But who possibly could've voted against one of the top three teams in the country?


Xavier took the last meeting between the two schools, and if Edmond Sumner doesn't crash land on the Pavilion hardwood, we might be talking about X being a top seed in the tournament. Nova may be the favorites, but with the Musketeers playing at a high level, Seton Hall outperforming expectations and Kris Dunn (that's the only argument I need), this Big East Tournament is more wide open than believed.

That's right, DePaul. I'm saying you've got a chance...

Rank Team/Record Trending Comments


(27-4, 16-2)


The Wildcats went 2-0 this week, won their third straight BIG EAST regular season title, and capped off a 48-6 stretch in three years of conference play. They're the favorite heading into the BIG EAST Tournament, but Nova knows what they need to do: Have success in the NCAA Tournament and shed the narrative surrounding them. Luckily for them, if all goes to plan, they'll play in Brooklyn the first weekend and Philadelphia the second. - Rob O'Neill


(26-4, 14-4)


Xavier completed one of the finest seasons in program history with a close victory over Creighton this weekend, matching the 2007-08 Elite Eight team for the school record for regular-season wins. Villanova may be the favorites to go back-to-back in the Big East tournament, but if these two teams lock up in the finals, Xavier has to feel pretty good about their chances to win the rubber match - Pierce Roberson


(22-8, 12-6)


The Pirates capped of an historically great season for their program on Saturday with their victory over DePaul. They amassed the fifth-most regular season wins the program has ever had and third-best since the 1988-89 season. They are almost assured a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2006 and are an intriguing pick to win the BIG EAST Tournament. Let's see what happens next, but for now, Hall fans should be basking the glory. - Chris Novak


(22-9, 10-8)

-- The Friars avoided disaster these last few days and will now play a very desperate Butler team in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament. The Friars could very well be playing for the right to get into the NCAA Tournament, so it will be very intriguing to see what happens, win or loss - Chris Novak


(21-9, 10-8)

+1 After a tough start to the conference schedule, Butler finished strong, surviving a late scare from Seton Hall and dubbing Marquette on senior day. The Bulldogs should feel good about their chances to make the NCAA Tournament, but all it takes is a bad loss in the quarterfinals to Providence or a long-shot like Georgetown winning the whole damn thing to make Butler sweat it up come Selection Sunday - Pierce Roberson


(18-13, 9-9)


After a loss at Providence to begin the final week, it looked as if Creighton's limits as a basketball team in this 2015-16 campaign had been reached, an idea that was cemented with a loss (despite a valiant comeback) against the fifth-ranked Musketeers to close out the season. Senior guard James Milliken was outstanding in this final week of play and was instrumental in the Jays keeping the Xavier game close. Unfortunately, Creighton will face the sharpened and swinging scimitar that is the Seton Hall Pirates in the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST Tournament. - Alex Sindelar


(19-12, 8-10)


The Golden Eagles have some work to do in the BIG EAST Tourney if they want to make the NIT, but Henry Ellenson's strong performance (29 points, eight rebounds) in the loss to Butler is a welcome sign for Marquette, especially after Ellenson rolled his ankle against Georgetown and missed the second half of that victory. - Rob O'Neill


(14-17, 7-11)


The Hoyas' season ended with a whimper Saturday in a disappointing effort against vaunted Villanova, capping off with the ugly loss that it did. They'll now face DePaul in the BIG EAST Tournament opening round, whom they infamously lost to two years ago. Could history repeat itself? It wouldn't be all that surprising if it did. - Chris Novak


(9-21, 3-15)


The Blue Demons went 9-21 in their first season under Dave Leitao (again). The good news is they'll meet Georgetown in the opening round of the Big East tournament, with a chance to recreate some fond memories from just two years ago - Pierce Roberson


(8-23, 1-17)


The Red Storm capped off their worst season in school history, and remain in last place in our power rankings. With a highly-ranked recruiting class coming in next season, all the Red Storm can hope to do in the BIG EAST Tournament is play spoiler. - Rob O'Neill

Alley Oop of the Week

The countdown on Kris Dunn's college career is ticking down. Let's enjoy plays like this while we still have them at PC.

Alum of the Week

Jimmy Butler returned from injury to push the struggling Bulls to a win in primetime against the Rockets on Saturday. Jimmy G. scored 24 points and grabbed 11 boards and six assists before fouling out, but for the simple fact he made a porous Bulls team look like a playoff team with his presence alone is enough to earn him Alum of the Week honors.