Big East Tournament Predictions, Betting Odds & Favorites to Win 2021
- After its cancellation in 2020, the Big East Conference Tournament is back!
- The Big East Conference Tournament bracket was announced, with the first through fifth seed getting a first-round bye.
- The winner of the 2019 Big East Tournament was Villanova, who claimed their fifth title.
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The Big East Conference Tournament, also known as the Big East Men’s Basketball Tournament, is a single-elimination basketball tournament that involves all eleven schools representing the conference. The winner of the tournament will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, but the winners of the regular season are awarded the true conference championship.
When Is the 2021 Big East Conference Tournament?
The 2020-2021 Big East Tournament is scheduled to begin on March 10th, 2021, and run through March 13th, 2021. Adjustments are possible depending on the COVID-19 protocol.
Where Is the 2021 Big East Tournament Being Held?
The 2021 Big East Tournament is being held in New York City, NY. Madison Square Garden, the “Most Famous Venue in the World”, a multi-purpose indoor arena and home to the New York Rangers (NHL) and New York Knicks (NBA), will be the location where the tournament will be hosted.
The arena can fit just over 20,000 people and has hosted events from hockey to basketball, to Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing. It was the home of the 2019 Big East Conference Tournament as well.
The 2021 Big East Tournament will not be welcoming fans to its competitions.
Where Can I Watch/Stream the 2021 Big East Tournament?
The 2021 Big East Tournament is expected to be broadcast on Fox Sports 1 and Fox networks. Fox has been the main broadcasting partner of the Big East Tournament since 2014.
Live streaming will be available on Fox Sports Go, so long as you also have a cable or streaming service subscription.
Favorites to Win the 2021 Big East Tournament
— Villanova MBB (@NovaMBB) March 2, 2021
Another season and another fantastic run of form for the Villanova Wildcats. It seems like head coach Jay Wright really has it all figured out, as the Wildcats are 15-4 on the season with a 10-3 record against the Big East. It’s tight at the top, but for now, Villanova are the kings.
The Wildcats aren’t the most efficient offence in the country, but when it comes to good opportunities they rarely fail to capitalize. They are first in the Big East in free throw attempts and first in three-pointers made and attempted – all on a 36.1% conversion rate. Their offensive versatility is has helped them to their great success.
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl leads the Wildcats offense. A combo-forward with solid athleticism and tenacity in the paint, Robinson-Earl is tough to handle. He leads the Wildcats in scoring, but Villanova’s issues tend to stem from who might support him. With a rotation that only goes about six or seven deep, you’d wonder how committed Jay Wright is about running his players should they achieve an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.
Calm like a 𝗕𝗮𝗹𝗹𝗼𝗰𝗸 𝗕𝗼𝗺𝗯 pic.twitter.com/A2iLHQYLSG
— Creighton Men’s Basketball (@BluejayMBB) February 27, 2021
Creighton burst on to the NCAA AP Polls at 14th, after amassing a 17-6 record. They are 13-5 against Big East competition, where they’ve dominated on the offensive end.
The Bluejays are succeeding off the back of their tremendous offensive play. Not only are their first in field goal percentage and second in three-point percentage, but they also convert on a rather high volume of attempts. A commendable defence that is first in field goal percentage allowed and first in two-point field goal percentage allowed supports all of that.
We can’t leave without giving a shout out to Head Coach Greg McDermott’s “Birds of Trey”. Ty-Shon Alexander, Marcus Zegarowski, and Mitch Ballock have made a total of 221 three-point field goals (and counting). All three rank among the top five three-point shooters in the Big East, no simple feat against some tough perimeter defences.
— UConn Men’s Basketball (@UConnMBB) February 28, 2021
The Huskies didn’t break the AP Top 25 on initiation, but they did receive five votes. With a 12-6 record, along with a 9-6 record in the Big East, UConn aren’t a team that can be overlooked.
UConn and Head Coach Dan Hurley have put together a very intimidating defence. The Huskies are second in field goal percentage allowed, third in three-point percentage allowed, fifth in steal, and first in blocks – all while maintaining the second-lowed foul rate in the Big East.
A talented combo guard, James Bouknight leads the Huskies in scoring. He may have been out for a month since January but he returned without a hitch, averaging 20.8 points and 6.5 rebounds in four games since recovering from injury.
2021 Big East Tournament Dark Horse
Seton Hall Pirates
— Seton Hall Men’s Basketball (@SetonHallMBB) March 2, 2021
The Seton Hall Pirates have snuck up on a lot of people this year. Fourth in the Big East with a 13-10 record, while going 10-7 in conference play, head coach Kevin Willard has produced a solid if not spectacular team.
The Pirates are what you would call a grinding team. They have a good field-goal percentage, as they opt for focused, available shots rather than a free-flowing offence that you see from other schools. Their persistence is best seen through their 18.2 free-throw attempts per game, second in the Big East.
Two players stand out for the Pirates this season. Seniors Myles Cale and Sandro Mamukelashvili have been key to their success. Georgian big Mamukelashvili has shown an impressive inside-out presence, while Cale’s production has nearly doubled since last season on much-improved efficiency.
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Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
Email: [email protected]