2022 Big East Men’s Basketball Tournament Preview

Story posted March 8, 2022 in Sports, CommRadio by Aidan Torok

The Big East regular season has come to an end and all eyes are now on Madison Square Garden ahead of the Big East tournament. Providence enters as the one seed and is the favorite to punch its ticket to the NCAA tournament.

The Big East tournament for the first time in two years will have fans packed in the world’s most famous arena. Last year, Georgetown came out of nowhere and snatched the automatic bid. This year should feature some of the same chaos.

The Big East has been nothing but unpredictable this year. Villanova, coming into the season, was the clear favorite to win the regular-season title. However, Providence has had a fairy tale season which has catapulted them to claim its first-ever Big East regular-season title.

Villanova, despite not winning the regular season, still enters as the two seed.

Senior Guard Collin Gillespie leads the Wildcats and was just unanimously voted to the all-Big East first team. The unanimous vote suggests Gillespie will be named Big East player of the year later this week.

The main storyline heading into the Big East tournament revolves around the number one overall seed. Many teams around the country have questioned how legit this Providence team is.

Ed Cooley has done a phenomenal job and deserves to be mentioned in the coach of the year conversation. Cooley was able to bring the Big East regular-season championship to Providence for the first time in school history.

However, Providence is 10-2 in games decided by less than five points. Providence barely getting by indicates some luck for the Friars. Providence also didn’t have anyone named to the first-team All-Big East.

Junior guard Jared Bynum and senior forward Nate Watson were both named to the second-team all-Big East and the Friars will need those two to perform their best this week if they want to have any hope of winning the Big East tournament.

Villanova has dominated this conference and this tournament in the past. Villanova’s head coach, Jay Wright has earned two national titles. Ed Cooley is going to have to work hard for this automatic bid.

The tournament being played in Madison Square Garden should result in big St. Johns and Seton Hall crowds this week. St. Johns have struggled down the stretch and will need a good performance this week to work itself off the bubble.

Xavier will probably have the most to play for this week. Heading into the tournament, Xavier finds themselves squarely on the bubble.

Xavier has lost five out of its last six games as this stretch has torpedoed their season. Xavier will face Butler in the first round on Wednesday.

The Big East has constantly been one of the best conferences in college basketball this season. The conference can get anywhere from seven to eight teams in this year's NCAA tournament. With a ton of teams in the mix, this sets up for a fun week ahead.

Aidan Torok is a second-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email ajt6051@psu.edu

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Aidan Torok

Sophmore / Broadcast Journalism

Aidan Torok is a sophmore from West Caldwell, New Jersey majoring in broadcast journalism at Penn State. He produces content and does play-by-play announcing and beat writing for the CommRadio sports department. If you’d like to contact him, email him at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).