I managed to catch the end of the Connecticut-Villanova game, though I wish I'd seen the whole thing. Man, the Big East has some very, very good teams this year. You watch the Huskies blow a team out and think, "No one else is going to beat them if Rudy Gay continues to show up." But then Rudy has a big night and the Wildcats still prevail. I've always been partial to both teams as fall-backs after my dad's alma mater Syracuse has been vanquished in conference or tournament play. Tonight I was rooting for Villanova, because they were underdogs even as the fourth-ranked team in the nation at home and, more importantly, because they regularly play a rotation with only one player much taller than I am, yet still manage to outrebound teams with big front lines, of which Connecticut is this year's cream of the crop. As someone who has been following the Big East since before it received an automatic NCAA bid, through good times and bad, I'm ever so pleased to see the conference at the highest point it has managed since 1985. Sure, I'm first and foremost a Pac-10 guy. But family allegiances matter and the Big East comes second. And you know, thewhitaker, how much I like West Virginia's game.