Instead of being sociable or attempting to decipher whatever it was that woman at the front of the room was going on about, I spent my youthful winter hours at school drawing up mock Conference USA or Metro Tournament Brackets. I found knowing how the tournament would look if the season miraculously ended that day to be quite soothing and agreeable. Sure, I now lack both friends and the capability to read, but this is a game that demands sacrifice.
I would do this almost daily until the actual tournament was played, at which point I would revert to drawing haphazard squiggly lines on a piece of paper and trying to play it off like I was creative (a point of contention that was surprisingly not aided by my NPR lunchbox or Frasier backpack).
Well the game is back and sure to resurface several times over the next couple of weeks, so I suggest you embrace it...or scroll down and read the next post.
Here is how the Big East Tournament would be set up if the season ended today:
2012 Big East Basketball Tournament (as of February 16)
First Round, March 6
#16 Providence vs. #9 Connecticut, noon, ESPN2
#13 Villanova vs. #12 Pittsburgh, 2 p.m., ESPN2
#10 West Virginia vs. #15 DePaul, 7 p.m., ESPN U
#11 Rutgers vs. #14 St. John's, 9 p.m., ESPNU
Second Round, March 7
#8 Seton Hall vs. #16/9 winner, noon, ESPN
#5 South Florida vs. #13/12 winner, 2 p.m., ESPN
#7 Louisville vs. #10/15 winner, 7 p.m., ESPN
#6 Cincinnati vs. #11/14 winner, 9 p.m., ESPN
Quarterfinals, March 8
#1 Syracuse vs. #8/9/16 winner, noon, ESPN
#4 Georgetown vs. #5/12/13 winner, 2 p.m., ESPN
#2 Notre Dame vs. #7/10/15 winner, 7 p.m., ESPN
#3 Marquette vs. #6/11/14 winner, 9 p.m., ESPN
Semifinals, March 9
#1/8/9/16 winner vs. #4/5/12/13 winner, 7 p.m., ESPN
#2/7/10/15 winner vs. #3/6/11/14 winner, 9 p.m., ESPN
Final, March 10
Semifinal winners, 9 p.m., ESPN
--Louisville and Cincinnati are currently tied for the six seed. Since they haven't played yet, the tie-breaker moves to which team has the "best win," starting at the top of the standings and working your way down. UC's win over Notre Dame gives them the nod.
--Notre Dame earns the two seed over Marquette by virtue of the head-to-head tiebreaker.
--Georgetown beat South Florida, and thus gets the fourth double-bye.
--Seton Hall (7-7) is a half-game ahead of West Virginia and Connecticut (6-7) for the eight seed and final bye. UConn would earn the nine seed (the same spot from which they won the tournament a year ago) by virtue of their head-to-head tiebreaker with West Virginia.
--Pitt, Rutgers and Villanova are all tied at 4-9, but the Scarlet Knights and Wildcats have not played, which means we can't use the "mini-conference" tie-breaker. Rutgers gets the 11 seed because of its win over Notre Dame, Pitt is 12 because it beat Georgetown, and 'Nova is relegated to the 13 spot.
--St. John's (4-10) is a half game behind the previously discussed trio.
--Providence (2-12) trails DePaul (2-11) by a half game for the 15 seed. Feel that?
The final tournament for what will go down as one of the greatest conferences in the history of college basketball. Louisville needing a strong performance in order to greatly improve its tournament seeding.
These thoughts arouse me