New Big East makes statement

The Big East will be just fine, thank you very much.

Over the past six months, the Big East conference has been all shook up with the defection of West Virginia to the Big 12 following this season and the loss of Pittsburgh and Syracuse to the ACC, likely after next year. But if the Big East is going to miss these teams, it isn’t showing it.

Only one of the bunch, Syracuse, was one of the tournament’s final four teams and with Cincinnati’s 71-68 win over the Orange on Friday night, none of the defecting programs will lift the conference tournament championship. And now it is the Bearcats, among other programs, who will be called on to fill the void as the Big East transitions yet again. They started with a signature win.

“Well, it’s a huge win for our program,” Cincinnati head coach Mick Cronin said.

“It took us a while to develop toughness, and now that our toughness has caught up to our talent. When we make shots we can beat anybody. But our defense hung us in there last night. You need that all against Syracuse because they are arguably the best team in the country. But it’s a great win for our program. Maybe the guys that vote in the coaches’ poll will give us at least one vote on the also-rans. We didn’t get any last week despite winning eight of our last 10.”

The loss of the three basketball teams, a move precipitated by the schools to upgrade the conference their football programs play in, will hurt the Big East. Since 2001, the Big East tournament has been won seven times by a team that has already left the conference or will surely do so.

After Miami, Virginia Tech and Boston College left the Big East earlier last decade, it was Cincinnati on the football side who stepped up to help replace those teams. Since 2006, the first year when the aforementioned programs left for the ACC, the Bearcats have won outright or shared the Big East football title three times.

Now in hoops, they look poised to do the same thing.

“I’ve got faith in my team. When our toughness rises to the level of our talent, we’ve got a great team,” Cronin said. “We can beat anybody. We came here to win the tournament, and we’ve got one more tomorrow night at 9 o’clock.”

Follow Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Is #JusticeForAvaLynn a case of bullying?

On Saturday, the hashtag #JusticeForAvaLynn became one of the trending topics on Twitter. Users circulated the above photo of 5-year-old AvaLynn, posted by her mother…

International

Terrorism could spread to US and Europe in…

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah said terrorism would soon spread to Europe and the United States unless it is quickly dealt with in the Middle East,…

National

Ex-Bitcoin official to plead guilty to Silk Road…

Bitcoin entrepreneur Charlie Shrem has reached a plea deal to resolve U.S. charges that he engaged in a scheme to sell over $1 million of…

International

China's army changes tactics to prepare for war…

Chinese President Xi Jinping has said China will spur military innovation and called on the army to create a new strategy for "information warfare" as…

The Word

The Word: Jennifer Lawrence among victims of massive…

It's been a while since there was a celebrity nude photo leak, so some industrious and not-at-all-creepy hackers got together to unleash one doozy of…

Gossip

Joan Rivers on life support: Report

TMZ reports that comedian Joan Rivers has been placed on life support, "completely reliant on machines to stay alive." Rivers has been hospitalized since she…

Movies

What's new on Netflix in September

September has a supernatural theme for Netflix. UFO "documentaries" and the survivalist reality series "Doomsday Preppers" are among the new series coming to the online…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: Lesbians, men most likely…

Lesbians, men most likely to achieve orgasm Location: U.S. Study subjects: 2,850 people Results: Whether you find it shocking or not, a new study reports that…

Wellbeing

VIDEO: Still not wearing sunscreen? You will after…

Sunscreen is possibly the most often repeated - and ignored - piece of skincare advice. But Thomas Leveritt took a different tactic. With a short…

Food

Twitter used to track down sources of food…

When Chicago health officials saw Twitter users complaining about local food poisoning episodes, they reached out on Twitter to those users and often ended up…

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.