March 6, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. –
Winners of four straight, the Notre Dame men’s basketball team (21-10, 10-8) is the No. 7 seed in the upcoming 2010 BIG EAST Men’s Basketball Championship presented by New York Life. The tournament will be held March 9-13 at Madison Square Garden in New York, N.Y.
The Irish recorded its seventh 10-win season in BIG EAST regular-season play following Saturday’s 63-60 overtime win at Marquette and earned a first-round bye when the championship starts on Tuesday (March 9). Notre Dame will play the winner of Tuesday’s (March 9) first-round matchup between No. 10 Seton Hall (18-11, 9-9) and No. 15 Providence (12-18, 4-14) in Wednesday’s night’s second-round game that will be played at 7:00 p.m. (ET) on ESPN.
The top four seeds all earned double byes and will not have to play until quarterfinal play begins on Thursday. Syracuse is the No. 1 seed after finishing with a 28-3 overall and 15-3 during the regular season. Pittsburgh (24-7, 13-5) will be the No. 2 in the championship and will be Notre Dame’s opponent if the Irish advance to the quarterfinals. The Irish played the Panthers less than two weeks ago and handed Pittsburgh a 68-53 setback on Feb. 24 at Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center.
West Virginia (24-6, 13-5) earns the No. 3 seed, while Villanova (24-6, 13-5) will be the No. 4 seed.
Notre Dame faced both Seton Hall and Providence only once during the regular season. The Irish defeated Providence 93-78 at Purcell Pavilion in the first BIG EAST regular season game of the season on December 30, but dropped a 90-87 decision at Seton Hall on Feb. 11.
First-round action begins on Tuesday ( with No. USF (19-11, 9-9) talking on DePaul (8-22, 1-7) at noon. That game will be followed by a matchup between No. 12 Connecticut (17-14, 7-11) and No. 13 St. John’s (16-14, 6-12) at 2:00 p.m. No. 11 Cincinnati (16-14, 7-11) will meet No. 14 Rutgers (15-16, 5-13) in the nightcap at 9:00 p.m.