Butler and Gonzaga took up all of the college basketball oxygen this week, but VCU elbowed its way into the spotlight on Saturday by thumping Butler 84-52 at home in what was Butler’s worst loss ever under head coach Brad Stevens.
When reports surfaced that Butler would join the “Catholic 7” along with Xavier to make up the new Big East and Gonzaga won at BYU on Thursday to be on the verge of getting the team’s first No. 1 ranking in school’s history, the college basketball world was abuzz over those two schools.
VCU’s message to the Butlers and the Gonzagas and the college basketball world on Saturday was: Don’t forget about us.
VCU played tough defense like a Big East team, and showed they had the rowdy and frenzied atmosphere, the talent, style of play, a dynamic coach in Shaka Smart whom the media loves, and the geography to fit in the new Big East, if asked.
This week, ESPN reported that the Catholic 7 schools in the current Big East (Georgetown, Marquette, DePaul, Villanova, Seton Hall, St. John’s, Providence) would add Xavier and Butler and retain the Big East name to form a basketball-only conference.
As Breitbart Sports noted, “Butler and Xavier connect the borders of the states of all teams except Georgetown, stretching from Wisconsin (Marquette) to Illinois (DePaul) to Indiana (Butler) to Ohio (Xavier) to Pennsylvania (Villanova) to New Jersey (Seton Hall) to New York (St. John’s) with a maritime border to Rhode Island (Providence).”
VCU would solve that problem, as the school in Richmond, Virginia is drive down I-95 away. And because the program continues to get better, the new Big East could bring in a program that would only add more value to the league.