Battle To Be The Best

By Richard Kent
Updated: February 25, 2008

CONNECTICUT – Right now it looks as if at least seven Big East teams will be eligible for the NCAA Tournament and some should advance far. Here’s how we see it.

CONNECTICUT: They should be an overall no. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. They are the odds on favorite to win the entire tournament. Sure they have been beset by injuries but freshman Maya Moore, sophomore center Tina Charles and junior guard Renee Montgomery are the best at their jobs in the country. UConn only has one loss this season and it was at Rutgers and Rutgers played the best half of their season in the second half.

PROJECTION: National Championship.

RUTGERS: The Scarlet Knights suffered a devastating blow when they lost sophomore Myia McCurdy to an ACL injury. They are very thin but have a great starting 5 led by sophomore Epiphanny Prince. They are as quick as any team in the country.

PROJECTION: Elite Eight.

WEST VIRGINIA: The Mountaineers led by head coach Mike Carey are a big surprise this year. They have beaten Rutgers at home and are an excellent shooting team. Senior guard Meg Bulger is as good as they come.

PROJECTION: Sweet Sixteen.

SYRACUSE: They are another surprise in the Big East led by head coach Quentin Hillsman. They nearly defeated UConn at home. Junior guard Chandrea Jones has been playing well lately as have freshman guard Erica Morrow and sophomore forward Nicole Michael. They had a disappointing loss at Providence but besides that have had a stellar season.


NOTRE DAME: The Irish have suffered some injuries but still have plenty of talent in yet another 20 win season for head coach Muffet McGraw. There are few players in the country better than senior guard Cherel Allen.


DEPAUL: Doug Bruno is doing another excellent job in Chicago. Senior guard Allie Quigley is really lighting it up and had a season high 36 points on 15-21 shooting against Georgetown. Sophomore guard Deirdre Naughton is a surprise as is China Threatt.


PITTSBURGH: As the health of Marcedes Walker goes so does the Pittsburgh season With her injured they went 1-4. She is one of the top players in the Conference.


LOUISVILLE: They have been up and down this season but certainly are very talented. Junior forward Candyce Bingham has been playing well as has senior center Chauntise Wright. Junior forward Angel McCoughtry will most likely be Player of the Year in the Big East. Her value was most felt in a win against Georgetown when she did not start after arriving late for the team’s shootaround and at the break Louisville led only by 34-28.