Big East approves 18-team tourney

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla.  -- The Big East Conference basketball coaches’ proposal to have all teams compete in the league tourney when the conference expands to 18 hoops members in 2013-14 was approved.

There will be two play-in games involving the 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th seeds of the tournaments.

To make it work, an additional day will be added to the tournaments. On the men’s basketball side, it is unknown if the play-in games will be played in New York’s Madison Square Garden, the site of the other tournament games.

“It would be in the New York area for sure,” said Dan Gavitt, Big East associate commissioner. “But the decision was just made. We haven’t even considered what those options could be. We haven’t studied that.

“Fortunately, we got some time.”

On the men's side, the play-in games will be on the Monday of the tournament week. On Tuesday, the top four teams will play the remaining bottom four teams. The winners will advance to Thursday’s quarterfinals. Meanwhile, seeds five-through-12 will play Wednesday for the chance to reach the quarterfinals.

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