You know the story. The Big East has big players, strong players, bruising players, and yes, tough players. After all, it was the Big East that turned basketball into basketbrawl. Muscle became more standard equipment than jump shots. The Georgetown Hoyas with Michael Graham ready to bash his bald head into anything that got in the way of a victory. Jerome Lane ripping rims from backboards. They put the Big in the Big East. Certainly Pitt's DeJuan Blair does that now. But any long time observer (at my age I qualify) has noticed the transformation of the Xavier program. Muscle is in at Xavier these days, just check out B.J. Raymond. He's huge, almost to the point of needing tethered like a balloon in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. Jason Love has muscled up in his days at X, and C.J. Anderson is rough and ready near the bucket. Dante Jackson is ready for a war in Boston against Pitt, and I think he's right.
A physical struggle indeed. Look at the match ups in the Sweet 16. There are some good ones. But there is not one match on the board that will involve more ice bags, ace bandages, and perhaps stitches than the Xavier-Pittsburgh match up. Have fun fellas. Glad I'm watching this scrum.