How big is too big for a tournament?

Jeremy Hazell and No. 12 Seton Hall lost to a lower-seeded Rutgers team yesterday in overtime.

The expanded Big East tournament is supposed to make room for the little guy. But is that necessary in a power conference dominated by so many big boys?

The Big East brass, three years into its decision to include all 16 teams in its postseason tourney, has yet to see a squad seeded 13 or lower advance to the quarterfinals. The chances look grim again considering the top 11 seeds are primed for NCAA tournament spots.

The conference has hyped up the five-day event as being “for the fans,” but MSG was strangely silent for the better part of the opening round. The players were off-rhythm, yawning spectators were downing more coffee than beer and even the cheerleaders took a tumble on the hardwood.

“If that’s what they want to do, that’s what they’re going to do,” West Virginia forward Kevin Jones said. “Gives some teams a chance to get a couple wins … but seems like higher [seeds] always win anyways, so what’s the point?”

Well, more games obviously mean more money, but they could also mean less prestige. Middle-tier teams forced to play an often meaningless extra game in the conference tournament may not be as fresh once the Big Dance rolls around. Or even worse, they might not be dancing at all. Such was the case last season, with No. 11 Cincinnati. The Bearcats won a throwaway game against Rutgers, then beat Louisville before falling short to eventual champ West Virginia. They wound up in the NIT.

“Had we played just a back-to-back, rather than three straight games, yeah, it might have been a different outcome,” Cincinnati coach Mick Cronin said.


'Suspicious' Hamilton Heights fire caused by power strip:…

An extension cord overload caused the deadly fire in Hamilton Heights late Monday that killed a 15-year-old girl and injured at least 12 others.


At 91, Marvel creator Stan Lee continues to…

By Piya Sinha-RoyLOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Marvel Entertainment's chief emeritus Stan Lee may be in his ninth decade, but it hasn't stopped him from adding…


Islamic State says beheads U.S. journalist, holds another

Islamic State insurgents released a video purportedly showing the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley, who had gone missing in Syria nearly two years ago.


VIDEO: NYPD seeks shooter in East New York…

Cops are on the lookout for an unknown shooter who aimed and missed hitting a man on a bicycle, instead nearly striking a nearby officer in East New York.


Interview: Jessica Alba is a stripper again in…

Jessica Alba has gotten used to vague phone calls from director Robert Rodriguez, the Austin-based auteur who has made a habit of putting Alba into…


Interview: Robert Rodriguez doesn't mind that Jessica Alba…

In making a Hollywood-friendly adaptation of Frank Miller's gritty "Sin City" graphic novel series, Robert Rodriguez learned that some things have to go — namely…


TV watch list, Wednesday, Aug. 20: 'Extant,' 'Legends'…

See a two hour block of Halle Berry's scifi show, "Extant."

The Word

The Word: Mischa Barton in trouble, not that…

  People are really, really worried about Mischa Barton. Again. The former "O.C." star is reportedly in deep financial trouble and can't seem to get…


2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL defense (DEF)


2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL quarterbacks (QB)


Shane Greene travels unlikely road to Yankees stardom

Shane Greene was throwing a bullpen session on a quiet field at Daytona Beach Community College one day when the ball started moving.


2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL tight ends (TE)


Fun family activity: Off-Broadway show for pre-teens

"The Love Note" is an off-Broadway musical your pre-teen won't roll his or her eyes at.


Barnes & Noble partners with Samsung to release…

Barnes & Noble releases the first full android tablet optimized for reading.


11 timeless gifts for registries or just because

Gifts to prove you're a style maven once and for all.


The Chic Wife tells us how to use…

Kris Schoels, aka The Chic Wife, grew up on a farm with peach trees. August is National Peach Month, but Kris Schoels doesn’t need a reason…