The Villanova women’s basketball team recently released their full 2013-14 schedule. It will feature the typical four games within the Big 5 rivalry, as well as an 18-game schedule within the new Big East conference, which now features a home-and-home against every team, each year. It’s a format that most teams in smaller conferences play to, and it evens out the schedule much more so you don’t end up playing UConn and Notre Dame four times while other teams only face them twice.
One of the things to like about this year’s slate of games is the parity. From top to bottom, the new Big East is much more balanced. Gone are behemoths of UConn and Notre Dame. In fact, four of the top five finishers in the conference are gone, as well as two of the bottom three (including winless Pittsburgh and Cincinnati). What you’re left with is a conference with very similar characteristics to the men’s conference.
There are no possible top 5 upsets anymore, but at the same point, they weren’t very possible in the first place. Villanova played Notre Dame to a nine-point loss last year, and it was one of the closest games the Irish played all season. What we have here is a decent all-around conference with the potential for lots of tough road games and difficult battles deep into February, not to mention a Big East Championship that anyone could win, rather than just UConn and Notre Dame.
As far as the new teams in the conference, Xavier finished 7-7 in the A10 Conference last year, which was better than ’Nova’s Big 5 rivals Temple and La Salle, and worse than Saint Joseph’s. Butler finished 8-6 in the A10, one place behind Saint Joe’s. Xavier made it to the conference finals, but fell to Temple. Meanwhile, Butler made it to the NIT.
Creighton finished the year at 25-8, and beat Syracuse in the first round of the NCAA Tournament as a 10-7 upset. They fit in the same category as Villanova and St. John’s, and they held most of their opponents in-conference to lower point totals. The Wildcats will travel to Omaha to open their Big East schedule on December 28.
Villanova opens the season in Toledo, Ohio for the Toledo Tournament, hosted by Toledo. Say that three times fast. Their first game is against Mississippi Valley State, and they will then face the winner/loser of the Drexel-Toledo game. This is followed up by road games at Lehigh and Sacred Heart and a home game against Lafayette.
Over Thanksgiving break, the Wildcats will travel to Miami for the Florida International Tournament. Their first round matchup will be against Montana State, and then two days later they will face either Valparaiso or host FIU.
Upon returning from Florida, Villanova will begin their Big 5 slate, playing Saint Joe’s, La Salle, and Temple before Christmas. From that point forward, it is all Big East Conference games except for a January 15th battle against UPenn.
Overall, the ’Cats will be playing basketball in 12 different states this season at a minimum. A new group of opponents in-conference coupled with tournaments in Ohio and Florida make this a great way to christen the new conference. Pop the bubbly, folks, it’s time to party.
2013-14 Villanova Women's Basketball Schedule
|Date||Opponent / Event||Location||Time / Result|
|11/09/13||vs. Mississippi Valley State||Toledo, Ohio||12:00 p.m. ET|
|11/10/13||Drexel/Toledo||Toledo, Ohio||12:00/2:30pm ET|
|11/14/13||at Lehigh||Bethlehem, Pa.||11:30 a.m. ET|
|11/20/13||at Sacred Heart||Fairfield, Conn.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|11/24/13||vs. Lafayette||Villanova, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|Florida International Tournament|
|11/29/13||vs. Montana State||Miami, Fla.||8:00 p.m. ET|
|12/07/13||vs. Saint Joseph's||Villanova, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|12/15/13||at La Salle||Philadelphia, Pa.||TBA|
|12/22/13||at Temple||Philadelphia, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|12/28/13||at Creighton *||Omaha, Neb.||3:00 p.m. ET|
|12/31/13||at Marquette *||Milwaukee, Wis.||TBA|
|01/04/14||vs. Providence *||Villanova, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|01/08/14||at Butler *||Indianapolis, Ind.||TBA|
|01/11/14||vs. Seton Hall *||Villanova, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|01/15/14||vs. Penn||Villanova, Pa.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|01/19/14||at DePaul *||Chicago, Ill.||3:00 p.m. ET|
|01/22/14||vs. St. John's *||Villanova, Pa.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|01/25/14||vs. Xavier *||Villanova, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|01/29/14||at Georgetown *||Washington, D.C.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|02/01/14||vs. Creighton *||Villanova, Pa.||2:00 p.m. ET|
|02/05/14||at Providence *||Providence, R.I.||TBA|
|02/09/14||at Seton Hall *||South Orange, N.J.||TBA|
|02/12/14||vs. Butler *||Villanova, Pa.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|02/15/14||at St. John's *||Jamaica, N.Y.||12:00 p.m. ET|
|02/23/14||vs. Georgetown *||Villanova, Pa.||1:00 p.m. ET|
|02/25/14||vs. Depaul *||Villanova, Pa.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|03/01/14||at Xavier *||Cincinnati, Ohio||TBA|
|03/04/14||vs. Marquette *||Villanova, Pa.||7:00 p.m. ET|