Oct. 24, 2001
Boston College and Georgetown are the choices to win their respective divisions in the 2001-02 BIG EAST regular season, according to a vote of the league’s head coaches. Coaches did not place their own teams on their preseason ballots.
Boston College is the pick to capture the East Division crown. The Eagles, who earned six first-place votes, were the suprising East champions last season. BC recorded a 13-3 conference record — the best mark in either division — after being tabbed for fifth place in last year’s poll.
Connecticut finished second to Boston College in this year’s balloting. The Huskies, who had been chosen to win the league or their division in each of the last four seasons, received four first-place votes. Miami edged Providence for third place, though each squad garnered two first-place votes. They were followed by St. John’s, Villanova and Virginia Tech.
Georgetown was a near-unanimous selection to win the West Division, collecting 12 first-place votes. The Hoyas finished ahead of Syracuse, a solid choice for second. Notre Dame, the defending West Division champions, will finish third, according to the coaches.
West Virginia and Seton Hall tied for fourth place. Pittsburgh was tabbed for sixth followed by Rutgers.
Last season, Connecticut was picked to win the East Division and Seton Hall was the choice in the West.
2001-02 Coaches’ Preseason Poll
East Division Pts.
1. Boston College (6) 81
2. Connecticut (4) 78
3. Miami (2) 67
4. Providence (2) 61
5. St. John’s 41
6. Villanova 38
7. Virginia Tech 19
West Division Pts.
1. Georgetown (12) 90
2. Syracuse (2) 78
3. Notre Dame 63
4. Seton Hall 47
West Virginia 47
6. Pittsburgh 41
7. Rutgers 19
First-place votes in parentheses
It’s 12 Again For New York
For the second year in a row, 12 of the BIG EAST’s 14 teams will advance to the BIG EAST Championship in Madison Square Garden. The top six teams in each division will make the trip to New York.
The top two finishers in each division will earn first-round byes. The first-round games will be cross-divisional matchups. The West Division No. 4 seed will play the East Division No. 5 seed. The East No. 3 will meet the West No. 6. The East No. 4 will play the West No. 5. The West No. 3 will meet the East No. 6.
For chances on winning the tournament, history remains on the side of teams earning byes. However, in the last two years, two teams (Pittsburgh in 2001 and Connecticut in 2000) made it to the championship round by winning three games in three days. Both lost in the finals.
In last year’s title contest, Boston College defeated Pittsburgh, 79-57.