Big East Conference (conference rank: 3rd)
March 8-11
All games at Madison Square Garden
kPOY: Josh Hart, Villanova.
Regular season champ: Villanova (preseason #2 / 1st Big East, current #2)
Overachiever: Marquette (preseason #47, current #28)
Underachiever: Xavier (preseason #11, current #43)

You still hear people use the term “Power 5” to describe the best basketball conferences, but it is dying. It should have never been around to begin with, of course, as over the past three seasons, the Big East has proven to be better than multiple conferences referenced with the football-centric term.

The seedings for the Big East tournament do look odd. Xavier is seeded seventh, while a total of 15 AP voters had the Musketeers ranked higher than seventh in the country on their pre-season ballot. And nobody has Providence in their top 25 right now, but the Friars won a four-way tiebreaker for the three-seed.

It’s true the conference had some disappointments. Xavier hasn’t recovered from losing Edmond Sumner to a torn ACL in late January. And Georgetown’s program has unraveled late in the season. But those performances were offset by the emergence of Marquette and Providence. Although, neither’s finish was too much of a surprise based on preseason ratings. In fact, the Big East might have been the least surprising conference this season. Eight of the ten teams did what one would have reasonably expected prior to the season.

And Villanova is in prime position to defend its national title. The Wildcats won their fourth-consecutive solo regular-season title, which is tied with Kansas for the longest active streak in the land.

St. John’s gets half of a home-court share in these calculations.

               Qtrs Semis Final Champ
 1 Villanova    100  89.0  71.5  51.5
 2 Butler       100  68.2  39.6  16.6
 6 Creighton    100  65.0  33.5  12.8
 4 Marquette    100  62.1  17.1   8.1
 7 Xavier      84.5  30.2  12.9   3.7
 3 Providence   100  35.0  13.7   3.6
 5 Seton Hall   100  37.9   7.4   2.6
 9 Georgetown  52.6   6.5   2.1   0.6
 8 St. John's  47.4   4.5   1.8   0.5
10 DePaul      15.6   1.6   0.2   0.05