After being the top dog in college basketball for a number of recent years, before the Big Ten's revival, the future of Big East basketball is in serious jeopardy. Teams like Notre Dame, Syracuse, Louisville, Pitt and Rutgers have already entered into agreements with other conferences in the near future.
Then the seven non-football playing schools in the league decided it would be in their best interest to leave the Big East as well. Those seven schools are Marquette, Georgetown, Villanova, Seton Hall, Providence, St. John's and DePaul.
This leaves only Cincinnati, South Florida and UCONN as current Big East schools that have not opted to leave, as West Virginia has already left as a new member of the Big 12. No longer will the frantic play of Big East basketball be the same, and that's a shame for college basketball.
The annual Big East Tournament at Madison Square Garden in March may be the most exciting series of games each year prior to the NCAA Tournament. Five days of buzzer-beaters, upsets, and makings of great players won't have the same look in the near future.
This year may be the best that the Big East has to offer for a long time, so let's take a look at some previews and predictions for the upcoming 2012-13 conference campaign. With conference matchups starting next week, there's no better time than now to look ahead.