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Big East Tournament 2012 Preview: Syracuse An Obvious Favorite, But Watch Out For Marquette

Over at, Bill Connelly has a nice preview of the Big East Tournament, which kicks off on Tuesday. Unsurprisingly, Connelly thinks Syracuse is most likely to win the tournament, but Marquette and Notre Dame have shots as well.

Since losing four of six in late-December and early-January, Buzz Williams' squad has been, at worst, nearly as good as Syracuse. And with The Cuse dealing with another potential distraction, this could possibly give Marquette the nod. And, of course, one should not forget Notre Dame. The third seed fell off a bit in the last week or so; the Irish lost at St. John's (by three) and Georgetown (by 18) and barely held off Providence at home, but they are not that far removed from a fantastic nine-game win streak.

Connelly has 10 Big East teams making the NCAA Tournament, including West Virginia, although he notes that even Cincinnati, which has a better March Madness case, will need a strong Big East Tournament performance to avoid a No. 7 to No. 10 seed. The Mountaineers would also really benefit from a strong Big East Tournament run, but that might be tough, since even if they beat the UConn/DePaul winner on Wednesday, they'll have to take on Syracuse on Thursday.

Pitt faces St. John's on Tuesday at 2:00 p.m.

For more on the Big East Tournament, check out Big East Coast Bias.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.