Big East Tournament 2014: Predictions and Championship Odds for Every Team
The 2014 Big East tournament will have a completely different feel to it now that only 10 teams will enter Madison Square Garden.
Some of the traditional Big East powers remain in the conference, but there is one specific newcomer that is looking to make a lot of noise.
Here is a complete team-by-team look at the tournament as well as championship odds for each of the 10 squads playing in New York from March 12-15.
No. 10 DePaul
If you give DePaul any chance of advancing past its first-round game with Georgetown, then you may just be insane.
The Blue Demons are the worst team in the conference, a statement that is backed up by the fact that the team has won just once since January 18.
If DePaul is around for more than one day on the court at Madison Square Garden, it will be a complete and massive shock.
No. 9 Butler
It's been a rough year for Brandon Miller's Bulldogs, and they will face the difficult task of beating Seton Hall twice in four days to advance on to a quarterfinal game with No. 1 Villanova.
Butler did win two straight games for the first time since December to close out the regular season, but even if it beats Seton Hall, taking down Villanova is a task that asks too much of the team.
No. 8 Seton Hall
In all honesty, Seton Hall's clash with Butler in the opening round should be an exciting one.
The Pirates will have a chance to win in front of a crowd that should be in their favor before potentially taking on the regular-season champion Wildcats.
In two games against Villanova this season, Seton Hall lost by a combined 33 points, so don't expect an upset in that quarterfinal.
No. 7 Georgetown
Despite going 8-10 in the Big East regular season, the Hoyas still have a chance of making the Big Dance.
Defeating DePaul in the first round will do absolutely nothing for the seventh-seeded Hoyas, but a win over No. 2 Creighton in the next round would.
One of Georgetown's three wins over ranked opposition came against Creighton, which gives it a bit of hope heading into the quarterfinals.
That hope should be slashed to pieces by the shooting of Doug McDermott and his teammates.
No. 6 Marquette
Make no mistake about it, this season has been a disappointing one for Marquette.
The Golden Eagles still have a chance to make the NCAA tournament if they take down No. 3 Xavier, Creighton and Villanova to earn the automatic bid.
The reason why Buzz Williams' team is not being considered as a bubble team right now is its two losses to end the season against Providence and St. John's.
Reaching the tournament final is a goal that is borderline unrealistic, but this is the Big East tournament and upsets are bound to happen.
The Golden Eagles are hoping to be that unexpected team that catches fire at the Garden.
No. 5 St. John's
For St. John's, no other game matters more than Thursday's quarterfinal against No. 4 Providence.
The bubble battle is a must-win for both sides as they look to improve their respective resumes.
The problem is that both teams will use up a ton of energy while Villanova will be busy beating up on either Seton Hall or Butler in the same part of the bracket.
Fatigue could be a factor if the Red Storm advance to the semifinals, but they will have the home crowd behind them if they do move on.
No. 4 Providence
The same situation faces Providence that the Johnnies face.
If the Friars do win on Thursday, they will have to be ready to face Villanova and challenge them since a tournament berth is not guaranteed with a win over St. John's.
A shock win over Villanova would basically lock Providence into the field, but that may be too much to ask of Ed Cooley's team after an emotional quarterfinal.
No. 3 Xavier
Xavier needs at least one win in New York City to solidify a NCAA tournament berth, and that should come against a Marquette team that it split the season series with.
The Musketeers, who defeated Creighton on March 1, should give the Bluejays a test in the semifinals, but they are expected to fall at that stage.
Reaching the semifinals and having either Providence or St. John's knocked out in the quarterfinals should be a good enough formula for Chris Mack and company to make the field of 68.
No. 2 Villanova
Villanova may be the top seed at the Big East tournament, but until it beats Creighton, it will not be considered the best team in the conference.
The Wildcats are chasing a No. 1 seed in the Big Dance, a goal that can be achieved by beating Creighton in the final.
Losing in the two early rounds is just unacceptable for the Wildcats since they have dominated everyone else in the conference this season.
No. 1 Creighton
Despite hitting a rough patch at the end of the regular season against Xavier and Georgetown, the Creighton Bluejays are in pole position to win the Big East tournament.
The Bluejays showed that they are primed for a deep run in March on Saturday night in their blowout win over Providence.
With Doug McDermott showing no signs of slowing down, Creighton has a strong chance of being the best success in the postseason for the Big East.
If Creighton can once again exploit the flaws in Villanova's defense, it could contend for a No. 2 or No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament on Selection Sunday.
Follow Joe on Twitter: @JTansey90.
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