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Big East Standings, Schedule, Predictions, and Weekly Pick’em Contest (Week of 2/18)

NCAA Basketball: Georgetown at Villanova Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Villanova’s got a big game at the Garden, so while you’re preparing for that, get your picks in for Week 6 and check out our weekly look around the Big East.

The rules are simple, just pick who you think will win each of the games from this week using this link. We’ll keep a cumulative score of your predictions and release them each week. Whoever gets the most number of correct picks at the end of the season wins a prize! You will have until the first game tips off on Tuesday to get your picks in, in order for all of them to count. Any late submission will result in the picks made for finished games or the ones in progress being forfeited, but the remaining ones after them will count. (The timestamps never lie!) For scoring and contest purposes, your most recent answer form will be used. Make sure you put your VU Hoops account name, so we know who’s who!

This is a free contest. May the best VU Hoopster win!

Here is a scoresheet of everyone’s picks from this past week. (Update: The full scoreboard is now up!)

Big East Standings (Entering Week of 2/18)

Team Name Conf. W-L GB Conf. Win% Overall W-L Overall Win% STRK
Team Name Conf. W-L GB Conf. Win% Overall W-L Overall Win% STRK
Villanova 11-2 -- 0.846 20-6 0.769 L1
Marquette 10-2 0.5 0.833 21-4 0.84 W2
Seton Hall 7-6 4 0.538 16-9 0.64 W3
St. John's 7-6 4 0.538 19-7 0.731 W2
Butler 6-7 5 0.462 15-11 0.577 W1
Georgetown 5-7 5.5 0.417 15-10 0.6 L2
DePaul 5-8 6 0.385 13-11 0.542 L2
Xavier 5-8 6 0.385 13-13 0.5 W2
Creighton 4-9 7 0.308 13-13 0.5 L4
Providence 4-9 7 0.308 14-12 0.538 L2

Game of the Week: Villanova at Georgetown--Wednesday, Feb. 20, at 6:30 p.m. ET on FS1

Rivalry renewed! The last meeting had Villanovans sweating, and Georgetown fans cursing at all the missed opportunities. It was probably the scenario Georgetown could’ve hoped for--a cold-shooting game for the ‘Cats, Phil Booth wasn’t on for 90 percent of the game, and the Hoyas were right there almost every step of the way. However, the Wildcats clamped down, Booth showed up when it mattered most, and a career-game scoring-wise for Collin Gillespie and on the glass for Jermaine Samuels were the impact performances Villanova needed to shake off the Hoyas and continue its winning streak over the Wildcats’ rivals. Now, the series heads to down D.C., which based on the last meeting and an improved Georgetown squad overall, should be quite the draw. This game should have a different feel to it. ‘Nova was struggling to take and make the threes, the kinds it had made so many times in the past--missing open looks that 9-times-out-of-10, would probably go in on any other day of the week. On the other hand, Jessie Govan--Georgetown’s leading scorer and rebounder--was glued to the bench in foul trouble and eventually fouled out without scoring a single point. Mac McClung was also a non-factor. It’s likely that all of these things correct themselves. However, Georgetown should make it interesting--for a while. My Pick: Villanova 80, Georgetown 71

...and here’s two more to watch for:

Marquette at Providence--Saturday, Feb. 23, at 12 p.m. ET on FOX

These are two teams that are very different, depending on where they play their basketball games. Marquette hasn’t lost a game at home, but it is 5-3 against KenPom top 100 teams in places not named the Fiserv Forum. As for the Friars, the reputation of the Dunkin Donuts Center being a difficult place for visiting teams to play in is very well-documented. Providence doesn’t play like a sub-.500 Big East team at home (although they did just suffer a confusing loss to Xavier). Last time out, Providence did a pretty good job of keeping Markus Howard in check. Howard, the front-runner for Big East Player of the Year, shot just 4-of-15 on the floor. However, he made most of his points from the free throw line, where he went 14-for-16 en route to a 24-point performance. Providence’s effort on defense isn’t that bad, but it ultimately falls behind after not being able to keep up with most of these teams offensively. Look for the Friars to muck it up again, but it will be an imperative for them to get more scoring contributions outside of Alpha Diallo and Nate Watson. Outside of Butler and DePaul away games, the Golden Eagles have gotten a few bounces of ball fortunately bounce their way on the road. I said this before when Marquette was going into Hinkle Fieldhouse--and was proven very, very wrong--but I think this time around, Big East chaos ensues. My Pick: Providence 67, Marquette 66

Seton Hall at St. John’s--Saturday, Feb. 23, at 8 p.m. ET on FS1

Over the Hudson River and through the concrete jungle to Madison Square Garden, we go! It was quite a way to open up Big East play this year, when these two teams previously met. The Pirates won in controversial fashion (depending on who you talk to), thanks to the buzzer-beating heroics of former walk-on Shavar Reynolds, who drained the game-winning three to win. Seconds before that, St. John’s thought it had a turnover that would have sealed the game in the Red Storm’s favor, but referees overturned the decision and in a way gave Seton Hall a “do-over” on the final possession, which led to Reynolds’ shot to complete the late-game comeback. With No. 3-10 still very much undecided and up for grabs in the conference, these two teams are close in other in an important race for positioning. The Myles Powell-Shamorie Ponds duel will be a fun one to watch. A determined Red Storm team should get the vengeance it has waited for over a month and a half to achieve. My Pick: St. John’s 77, Seton Hall 72

A schedule for the rest of the games coming up this week:

Wednesday, February 20
Xavier at Seton Hall, at 7 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network
St. John’s at Providence, at 8:30 p.m. ET on FS1
Butler at Marquette, at 9 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network
Creighton at DePaul, at 9 p.m. ET on FSN

Saturday, February 23
Georgetown at Creighton, at 2:30 p.m. ET on FOX

Sunday, February 24
Villanova at Xavier, at 1:30 p.m. ET on CBS

Quick picks for the last six games, in order as above:

Seton Hall