The 2008-09 Big East season should bring as much excitement as any. Commonly regarded as the toughest conference in college basketball, it has the potential to put 9+ teams into the NCAA tournament come March.
At the backbone of a great team comes a great coach, and the Big East has plenty of great coaches. But which coaches are the best? Let's just say that a well-padded résumé is not enough to give a coach top honors in this conference.
A rivalry that in recent years switched from the Big East to the ACC takes center stage on Thursday night, as Virginia Tech (6-3, 3-2 ACC Coastal) visits Miami (6-3, 3-2) at 7:30 PM on ESPN. The winner gets a leg up in the unpredictable Coastal Division race, while the loser would be in serious trouble. Although Miami has a 16-9 advantage in the series, the Hokies have the upper hand of late winning nine of the last thirteen meetings. A star was born last Thursday night for Virginia Tech, with redshirt freshman Darren Lewis rushing for 253 yards in their win over Maryland.
CHN writers were asked a simple question: What team will be this year’s big surprise? Here’s what our guys had to say.. let us know who you would choose below:
#23 USF @ Cincinnati 7:30PM EST on ESPN
2008-09 BIG EAST Preseason Coaches' Poll
Rank School Pts.
1. Connecticut (9) 214
2. Louisville (3) 205
3. Pittsburgh (3) 200
4. Notre Dame (1) 195
5. Villanova 153
6. Marquette 146
7. Georgetown 141
8. Syracuse 139
BIG EAST FIVE-YEAR STANDINGS
This ranking tries to answer a simple question: Who has been the best team in the Big East over the last five years?
Unlike the NBA, where most starting lineups are set in stone weeks before the season, NCAA starting fives are highly unsettled and constantly in flux.
- Bracketology: Selection Sunday Projection
- Bracketology: Saturday Night NCAA Tournament Projection
- Non-BCS Top 25: Creighton, Colorado St Rise
- College Basketball Top 50: Indiana Ends Regular Season #1
- Non-BCS Top 25: Valpo Replaces BYU
- College Basketball Top 50: Maryland and Iowa St Drop Out
- Non-BCS Top 25: Davidson In, Wyoming Out
- College Basketball Top 50: #2 Gonzaga Hits All-Time High
- Non-BCS Top 25: Air Force, Davidson Making Moves
- College Basketball Top 50: Another Week, Another #1