Big East Tournament Is Exciting But How Many Players Can You Name?

Published on: 12th March, 2010


Big East Tournament Is Exciting But How Many Players Can You Name?  | read this item

New York – So, it’s come down to this. These may not have been the highest-profile teams in the Big East but they’re here, they’re competitive as can be, and we’re stuck with them.

Last night’s quarterfinal games guaranteed that three of the top four seeds in this league were not going to appear again. Syracuse, the league’s number one seed led by Wesley Johnson, the Big East’s Player of the Year, was put out by Georgetown. Pittsburgh, the number 2 seeded team was erased by Notre Dame’s new “Burn” offense, in which it runs the 35 second shot clock down to the very end before they take a shot. Villanova, the number four seed featuring All-American Scottie Reynolds said bye bye at the hands of Marquette.  Only West Virginia, the fourth seed, remains among the top four Big East teams.

As competitive and great as these games have been, can you name two players from the remaining colleges in this tournament? You can’t? It’s okay, neither can I.

Let’s see, there’s Harangody from Notre Dame. He puts up big numbers, doesn’t he? West Virginia? You got me. Marquette has a kid named Lazar. I think that’s his first name. He’s good though so Lazar just might become a household name, someday. Georgetown has that 6’11” center. No, not Patrick or Dikembe. It’s Greg, Greg Monroe. Remember that one, he’s a keeper. They also have the kid who just found out he has a form of diabetes. Austin Freeman. I remember that one. Kids that age shouldn’t get sick. But, they do, sometimes.

The coaches are the faces of these programs, as is usually the case in college basketball. Georgetown’s head man, John Thompson III, is famous for having a famous father who also used to be Georgetown’s head man with the same name. Younger Thompson is not as tall. And he hasn’t won as much as his dad, yet. 

West Virginia’s Bob Huggins looks like Elvis and acts like he’s been here before. That’s because he has been here before with a long career as a player and coach in the college game. Played at West Virginia in 1975, coached at Cincinnati, coached at Kansas State, and came back home to West Virginia. Thirty-four years and still ticking, and that’s after a recent heart attack. The doctors told him to take off weight and live a less stressful life. So he changed jobs, from one Big East meat grinder of a job to another Big East meat grinder of a job. And, on last look, Huggins has not taken off weight. He’s a lifer.

Marquette has a buzz-saw of a coach by the name of Buzz Williams. Buzz received his nickname as an assistant coach at Navarro College, a two-year public institution consisting of a main campus located in Corsicana, Texas. He “buzzed” around the men’s basketball team so often the coach gave him the nickname. And now, Buzz is on the big stage.

And, finally, Notre Dame’s head coach is someone named Mike Brey, a veteran of the college basketball wars having been an assistant to Mike Krzyzewski at Duke for eight seasons, head coach at Delaware for five seasons and three seasons tucked away in the record books as head coach at Notre Dame.

So, these are the faces of the Big East’s final four teams. The games have been competitive and exciting throughout the past four days of games at New York’s Madison Square Garden and tonight’s semi-finals should be terrific.

I just wish I could name more than a couple of players from each team.

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