Happy Tuesday Nova Nation! Jay Wright is the clear elder statesman of the Big East. Not only is he the conferences longest tenured active coach, he’s also the winningest. Wright comes into the week with four Big East Tournament Championships under his belt (or now waistband? Joggers huh?). No other active Big East coach has more than one (Cooley, Ewing, and Willard).
But talk about the Big East long enough and the conversation will at some point drift to the past and the icons that used to walk the sidelines. Trust me, Wright is paying no mind to his own legacy this week. But that’s not going to stop fans from keeping track as he continues to build up his accolades to stand alongside the members of the “Old Big East”.
Wright already has the Villanova accolades locked down. The school has 5 Big East titles, and Jay’s responsible for all of them except the Kerry Kittles title Lapas won in ‘95. Most of Wright’s success has come in the “Golden Era” of Villanova basketball, winning four of the last six conference tournaments. That places him 4th All-Time among coaches for BET Titles, but there are still three coaches that have out performed Wright so far in MSG.
Jim Boeheim - 5 Titles
The lone member of the trio that actually is still coaching, Boeheim’s success at MSG was spread out over his 30+ year run in the Big East. His first title came before the tournament was held in MSG and would rotate between conference host sites. Big surprise, the 1981 Title he won was held in the Carrier Dome on Syracuse’s campus. Once the tournament moved to NYC, he’d win once more in the 80’s, again in the 90’s, and then back to back in the mid-2000’s. While he did win the BET five times, he did lose the Championship game twice as often. That gives him the dubious honor of losingest head coach in the Big East Championship game with a record of 5-10.
John Thompson - 6 Titles
Big John dominated MSG in the 1980’s, the decade in which he won all six of his Big East Tournament Titles. Not only was he the first coach to with the Big East Tournament in 1980, he was also the first coach to win consecutive tournaments in ‘84 and ‘85. The star of those teams, Patrick Ewing, would also go on to coach Georgetown to a Big East Title, so it’s no doubt Thompson is so high on this list. Quick note though, while Thompson was the first to win consecutive titles with two, Jay Wright is the only Big East Coach (and Villanova the only Big East team) to ever win three straight, 2017-’19.
Jim Calhoun - 7 Titles
Still king of the hill when it comes to Big East Titles, Jim Calhoun will actually be on hand this week covering the action with Big East Shootaround. The legendary UConn coach won his first Big East Championship in 1990, and would add three more by the end of the decade. He’d add two more in the 2000’s, and then of course possible his most famous title was in 2011 with Kemba Walker.
It’s a testament to just how difficult winning in the Big East is that all of these Hall of Fame coaches with decades of years in the Big East still only managed to walk away with the tournament title a handful of times. Jay Wright and Villanova will certainly be challenged on their path to another title as they prepare for the NCAA Tournament, and we can’t wait for it all to get underway tomorrow!
In other news...
Big East Tournament
March Madness 2022: College basketball conference tournament predictions, picks, odds | CBSSports.com
Conference tournaments get underway this week for the top leagues and our experts pick who will be cutting down the nets
College Basketball: Jay Wright feeling good about Villanova as Big East tourney commences | timesherald
Villanova is no stranger to playing in front of large crowds in hostile environments. The Wildcats have played in front of more than 17,000 fans at Creighton, over 15,000 at UConn, nearly 14,000 at UCLA and more than 12,000 at Marquette this season.
NCAA basketball betting: Villanova favored in Big East Tournament
Villanova beat Providence in both regular-season meetings.
Big East Baller Update No. 17: Four days of legitimate insanity | The Daily Campus
This was one of the wildest seasons the Big East has ever seen, from Connecticut beating Auburn in double OT to Providence consuming Lucky Charms until they’re no longer magically delicious.
March Madness predictions: 2022 conference tournament picks | Sports Illustrated
Breaking down the ACC, Big Ten, Ivy, Mountain West, SEC and more as a bevy of NCAA bids are on the line.
2022 Big East Tournament bracket, schedule, picks, odds: The Athletic's model predicts Villanova to win automatic bid | The Athletic
See the bracket, odds, and expert picks for the 2022 Big East Tournament at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Villanova Men’s Basketball
VILLANOVA ATHLETICS PARTNERS WITH ALTIUS IN MULTIYEAR DEAL TO ADVANCE NIL STRATEGY | Villanova University
VILLANOVA, PA (March 7, 2022) – Villanova Athletics has entered a multiyear partnership with leading name, image and likeness advisory and education firm Altius
26 best basketball postseason moments from Philadelphia colleges | The Inquirer
Philly’s most memorable college basketball postseason moments involving the City Six programs, all chosen by The Inquirer’s sports writers and columnists.
Perretta, Ray to be Inducted into Philadelphia Big Five Hall of Fame | Villanova University
Wildcat legends to be inducted into Big Five Hall of Fame on April 11
Players Who Can Carry Their Basketball Teams To a National Championship | Celebsnet
March Madness is just a little bit over two weeks away. Some conference tournaments will start next week and some others will start up the week after.
Film Don’t Lie: Let’s talk about Saddiq Bey’s defense on and off the ball | Detroit Bad Boys
Bey has been awesome offensively but what has he shown on the other end of the floor
Villanova Women’s Basketball
VILLANOVA FALLS TO UCONN IN BIG EAST CHAMPIONSHIP GAME | Villanova University
UNCASVILLE, CONN—In the BIG EAST championship game on Monday night at the Mohegan Sun Arena, the Villanova Wildcats suffered a 70-40 defeat to the Connecticut Huskies.
Campbell Named BIG EAST Midfielder of the Week | Villanova University
New York, N.Y.- Senior midfielder Matt Campbell has been named BIG EAST Midfielder of the Week as announced by the conference office on Monday afternoon.
Wildcats Tied For Fifth After Day One of Ross Collegiate Classic | Villanova University
Southern Pines, NC - In their first tournament of the spring, the Villanova Wildcats sit in a tie for fifth place at the Ross Collegiate Classic. All play was suspended
Baseball home opener moved to Tuesday, March 8 | Villanova University
VILLANOVA, Pa.- Due to the Wednesday's weather forecast, Villanova's home opener has been moved up to Tuesday, March 8 with first pitch at 2:30 P.M.
Ally Jones Named to Weekly BIG EAST Honor Roll | Villanova University
NEW YORK—Junior catcher Ally Jones (Brielle, N.J.) was named to the weekly BIG EAST Honor Roll in an announcement made by the conference office on Monday afternoon.
Villanova University Receives $10 Million Gift from The H. Hovnanian Family Foundation | Villanova University
Villanova University President the Rev. Peter M. Donohue, OSA, PhD, today announced a $10 million gift from The H. Hovnanian Family Foundation to support several significant academic initiatives, including the continued modernization of Falvey Library.