#49 West Virginia Mountaineers: College Basketball 111 in 111

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Welcome to The Sports Bank’s third annual college basketball season preview series.  Two years we looked at 99 teams in 99 days.  Last year, we were slightly more aggressive and expanded to 111 teams in 111 days and will do so again as we look ahead to the 2012-2013 season.

We will rank the 75 power conference teams and top 36 mid-majors in reverse power ranking order.  We’ll break down rosters, transfers, incoming freshmen, non-conference schedules, and pick a player to watch for each team.

As a Big East fanatic, I hate that the West Virginia Mountaineers made the move to the Big 12 Conference.  It makes zero sense for the basketball program which has no even semi-rivals in their new league.  However, that is the ever evolving landscape of conference realignment.  In their inaugural season in the Big 12, West Virginia has some major shoes to fill if they hope to keep their run recent of success going.

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Temple to take West Virginia’s spot in the Big East?

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The Big East has a slot open now that West Virginia is being allowed to leave immediately for the Big 12 conference. Who will grab it? Possibly Temple who played in the Big East in football only from 1991-2004, but was forced out of the league. Now that the Big East has less options, and their college football situation is so awful, suddenly Temple doesn’t seem so bad.

It played as an independent and eventually landed in the Mid-American Conference in 2007. The Owls’ other sports programs, including men’s and women’s basketball, are in the Atlantic 10.

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2011-2012 Big East basketball power rankings (2/17/12)

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The biggest news involving Big East basketball this past week; Buh-bye West Virginia.  This will in fact be the Mountaineers final year as a member of the conference as they head to the Big 12.  Meanwhile, several teams have their NCAA Tournament hopes on life support and need to finish the season strong to ensure a spot in the dance.  Be sure to check back every Friday for my latest Big East Power Rankings.

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West Virginia to Replace Missouri in Big 12

The carousel keeps moving in college football conference expansion and relocation. Today it leaked that the West Virginia Mountaineers have been approved to replace Missouri Tigers in the Big 12 conference. The conference board of directors approved the move to take place once the Mizzou move to the SEC is complete.

WVU leaving the Big East obviously leaves an already very weak football conference to become even weaker. The Big East is already reeling from the loss of TCU, Syracuse and UConn. The Mountaineers over the Tigers probably means a push in football, but an upgrade in college basketball.

Here’s more from the AP:

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