Prior to the 2013-14 season the Big East was the most dominate conference in college basketball going back decades. Even with all their successes, the Big East has gone through a complete overhaul the last three seasons. Many traditional Big East schools followed the money to other conferences more focused on football. Even after losing a number of historic basketball schools the Big East was able to successfully recruit respectable basketball institutions such as, Butler, Creighton, and Xavier. The only reoccurring theme of the new Big East is the dominance of Villanova, who have only lost a total of four conference games the last two seasons. This season though, going into conference play with a 12-0 start, it’s the Xavier Musketeers who are taking college basketball by storm!
With the non-conference games coming to an end it’s hard to argue any team in the nation is playing better than the Musketeers. Xavier is one of four undefeated teams left in college basketball and has played one of the nation’s hardest schedules. They already have double digit wins against Michigan, USC, and rival Cincinnati. The key factor for Xavier’s early success is their ability to rebound the basketball. This season the Musketeers have averaged 13 more rebounds per game than their opponents. The Xavier front court is led by forward James Farr who’s averaging 9 RPG. This 6’10 Senior will need to control the paint tomorrow against a talented Villanova in the Big East opener. A 12-0 record might look solid but a win over the Wildcats will make them the clear favorite in the Big East.
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