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Big East Tiers: 1/22/18 edition

With a month of Big East play behind us, we are now in a position where we can be more confident that teams are not just flukes. There will still be plenty of movement by the end of the season, but small sample size isn’t really applicable any more. As always, this chart and all stats come from TRank.

Here is what the map looks like on the morning of 1/22/2018:

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Tier 1 – Villanova

The way they’re playing, we may need to add another tier. Nova is that good and that far ahead of the rest of the conference.  

Tier 2 – Xavier, Creighton, Butler, Seton Hall, Marquette

Xavier bounced back this week to revert more toward it’s non-con form, while Seton Hall keeps on taking water. The Pirate ship isn’t in danger of sinking and missing the NCAA tournament, but 3 blowouts to fellow Tier 2 teams in the last 4 games is concerning. The Desi benching at Creighton and subsequent Twitter posts cast a negative vibe on the team, but there is too much talent on that team to have the wheels come off. With DePaul, Providence, Marquette and Georgetown on deck in 4 of the next 5, a big bounceback may be in the works. Creighton has been a top-4 BEast team all season, but the loss of Martin Krampelj is quite significant. It will remain to be seen whether it knocks them back a peg. For now, I would still say all 5 of this teams are likely to reach the Dance.     

Tier 3 – Providence, St. John’s

Providence is the second hottest team in the league right now behind Villanova. Now that they are at the healthiest they’ve been all season, they are showing why most had them in the top-3 to start the season. Three straight road games against Nova, Hall and MU will tell us how real the bounceback is. St. John’s seems to be playing better, but handed the Hoyas a game it had already won, so the Johnnies are still searching for the elusive first Big East win. One bid from this tier would still be my guess.       

Tier 4 – DePaul, Georgetown

After facing each other this week, both teams will only play top-100 Ken Pom teams the rest of the way. I’m not saying they will get blanked in that time, I can guarantee both get at least one win, but we can now confidently say they will both remain in Tier 4 the rest of the season.

Although Villanova is running away with the league, the next 6 teams can all beat each other on any given night. With the bottom 3 settling at the bottom, I’m starting to think 7 teams is about as likely as 5 teams. It wouldn’t surprise me if either happened, though I’ll still say 6 is the conservative estimate. One thing is certain, it’s going to be a wild ride.   

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