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The Sun's Arizin: The Big East is still a major conference

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Not that we didn't know that.

TGIF, 'Nova Nation! It's nice to see the worldwide leader showing the Big East some love, with John Gassaway providing some backbone to the notion that the Big East is juuuuuuuust fine in it's current state. That along won't stop the moaning though - Villanova needs to step up and do some damage in the NCAA Tournament this year.

In football news, I'll be manning the ship on Saturday when the 'Cats host Fordham. Looking forward to hanging with you all in the game thread. The game will be available via live stream - we'll have information for you on Saturday morning.

Until then.

And now, the "news."

Two years after realignment, the Big East can still count itself as a major conference | ESPN ($)
When the Big East and American formed, many wondered how they would fair. Two years later, the Big East has kept up with the major conferences. The American? Not so much.

Villanova beefs up non-conference schedule to get ready for March | CBSSports.com
Villanova's dominance in the new Big East can't be understated, but the Wildcats needed to add tougher non-conference games to prepare for the NCAA Tournament.

Notre Dame President Stands Firm Amid Shifts in College Athletics | The New York Times
Shutting down the ND football program? Let's be realistic.

Breaking Madden: 44 quarterbacks vs. 44 defensive ends | SBNation.com
Breaking Madden has returned for a third season. It missed you.

Miyamoto Confirms That Super Mario Bros. 3 Was A Play | Kotaku
One of my favorite video game theories to emerge over the past few years is that Super Mario Bros. 3, with its hanging blocks and curtains, was actually just a stage performance. Turns out, according to Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto, the theory is true.