Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A record eight schools were chosen from the Big East: No. 2 UConn, No. 3 Pitt, No. 7 Notre Dame, No. 11 Louisville, No. 16 Syracuse, No. 17 Villanova, No. 20 Georgetown and No. 25 Marquette.
Syracuse, which downed Florida and Kansas last week en route to the CBE Classic title, moved into the Top 25 for the first time. Those two schools combined to win the last three NCAA championships. Kansas dropped out of this week’s poll.
“It’s frightening,” Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese told the AP. “And I’ve always said our league is great for fans and the media, but it’s a brutal league for coaches to keep on winning. Now I think everybody will be taking a shot at us because so much has been written about our league. But the great thing is there is a tournament to decide a national champion at the end of the year.”
Seven Big East schools made the USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ poll, No. 2 UConn, No. 3 Pitt, No. 7 Notre Dame, No. 11 Louisville, No. 16 Villanova, No. 18 Georgetown and No. 20 Syracuse.
Syracuse sophomore guard Jonny Flynn was named the Big East Player of the Week. Flynn helped guide the Orange to three wins last week, including victories against top 25 powers Florida and Kansas.
In Syracuse’s 89-83 win against the No. 17 Gators, Flynn tied the team lead in points with 18 after going five-for-seven in field goals and making all of his free throw attempts. A day later, Flynn nailed a three-pointer at the end of regulation to force overtime with the Jayhawks. He led the team with 25 points and had five assists. Flynn earned tournament MVP honors for his performances in the two games.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.