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Big East First Round preview for Wednesday, March 9

We go over all of the action at today’s Big East Tournament, including game times, odds, and more.

Xavier Musketeers guard Nate Johnson (10) celebrates after hitting a 3-pointer in the second half of the NCAA men’s Basketball game, Saturday, March 5, 2022, at Cintas Center in Cincinnati. Xavier Musketeers defeated Georgetown Hoyas 97-75. Albert Cesare/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Big East Conference Tournament is here! The first-round kicks off on Wednesday, March 9th with three matchups. Xavier will get the action started against Butler at 4:30 p.m. ET. They are followed by St. John’s taking on DePaul at 7:00 p.m. ET. The first night of tournament play wraps up with Seton Hall taking on Georgetown at 9:30 p.m. ET. All of the games will air on FS1.

As a reminder, the entire Big East Tournament running from March 9 to March 12 will take place at Madison Square Garden.

No. 8 Xavier vs. No. 9 Butler: 4:30 p.m. ET, FS1

Point Spread: Xavier -5.5
Point Total: 131

Xavier went 8-11 in conference play in the regular season but was able to win both of their matchups against Butler. They finished the regular season 1-5 in their final six games, but hopefully have some momentum after their 20 point win against Georgetown to finish the regular season. Butler went 6-14 in conference play and finished the season on a five-game losing streak. They only lost by two points to Xavier in their second matchup, but I don’t think they fare as closely this time around.

The pick: Xavier -5.5

No. 7 St. John’s vs. No. 10 DePaul: 7:00 p.m. ET, FS1

Point Spread: Saint John’s -5.5
Point Total: 153.5

If that was a battle of mascots, I would lean the way of the DePaul Blue Devils. Their logo is awesome, but their conference record was not. Their 6-14 record was the second-worst in the Big East. Down, but not out DePaul was able to sneak away with a win against St. John’s in their second matchup. St. John’s wasn’t ever able to sustain momentum and didn’t log more than two wins in a row against conference opponents. They ended the season with a loss and I think DePaul is able to come away with an upset in the first round.

The pick: DePaul +5.5

No. 6 Seton Hall vs. No. 11 Georgetown: 9:30 p.m. ET, FS1

Point Spread: Seton Hall -10.5
Point Total: 144.5

Georgetown and I won the same number of conference games in the Big East this year. Honestly, 0-19 is actually impressive when you really sit down and look at it. They went 6-24 on the year and didn’t win a single game away from home. Their most recent win was on December 15th. Seton Hall beat Georgetown by seven points and then by five in their second matchup. The moneyline would obviously favor the Pirates, but the Hoyas should actually be able to cover the spread.

The pick: Georgetown +10.5

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