ESPN Releases BIG EAST Men’s College Basketball Television Schedule, Women’s Big Monday Schedule

ESPN and the BIG EAST Conference announced its 2011-12 men’s college basketball television schedule for ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, and ESPN3.com. Overall, the networks will combine to televise a minimum of 70 conference games plus an extensive schedule of non-conference matchups. Additional conference games may be added to the schedule.

A schedule for ESPN Regional Television’s produced and syndicated telecasts is to be determined. ESPN3.com will provide a simulcast of every ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPN Regional Television telecast.

Conference action will tip off on Tuesday, Dec. 27, at 7 p.m. with Notre Dame at Pittsburgh on ESPN2 and ESPN3.com. It will mark the first of four consecutive ESPN2 BIG EAST telecasts.

The schedule will be highlighted by the popular weekly Big Monday Presented by Bud Light series beginning with a doubleheader of top teams Jan. 16: Louisville at Marquette at 3:30 p.m. ET and Pittsburgh at Syracuse at 7:30 p.m. Five of the eight matchups will feature a showdown between teams ranked in ESPN.com senior college basketball writer Andy Katz’s early men’s preseason top 25 poll.

Additional highlights:

  • The Saturday lineup features two Saturday Primetime Presented by DIRCTV telecasts and stops by College GameDay Driven by State Farm: Louisville at Pittsburgh Jan. 21 and Syracuse at Connecticut Feb. 25. Both games will tip off at 9 p.m. on ESPN. GameDay is hosted by Rece Davis with analysts Jay Bilas, Digger Phelps, Hubert Davis and Bob Knight. The two-hour Saturday morning edition is aired on ESPNU at 10 a.m. and continuing at 11 a.m. on ESPN while the one-hour evening edition at 8 p.m. is on ESPN.
  • The schedule includes 63 appearances by the six teams ranked in Katz’s early preseason top 25 poll (No. 4 Syracuse, No. 6 Connecticut, No. 9 Louisville, No. 13 Marquette, No. 17 Pittsburgh and No. 19 Cincinnati), including 14 games pitting ranked teams against each other.
  • For the first time ever, ESPNU will televise four Monday night BIG EAST games, all at 9 p.m.: Cincinnati at Georgetown (Jan. 9); Notre Dame at Rutgers (Jan. 16); Marquette at DePaul (Feb. 6); and DePaul at St. John’s (Feb. 20).
  •  In March, ESPN will once again televise all 15 games of the BIG EAST Championship Presented by American Eagle Outfitters across ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3.com.

For ESPN’s complete BIG EAST Men’s College Basketball television schedule, click here.

ESPN2’s Big Monday Presented by Bud Light primetime Game of the Week women’s basketball series, in its sixth season, features seven consecutive weeks, 11 games and four doubleheaders in February. The ESPN2 series showcases the best programs in Division I women’s basketball and tips off on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, Jan 16, at 7 p.m. ET with North Carolina at Connecticut.

For the first time the schedule will include includes an afternoon game on President’s Day, Monday, Feb. 20, a BIG EAST tilt featuring Notre Dame at Louisville at 2 p.m. on ESPN. All games on ESPN and ESPN2 will be simulcast on ESPN3.com.

Schedule Highlights:

  • The month of February features four straight weeks of doubleheaders at 7 & 9 p.m., beginning on February 6 with North Carolina at Duke
  • All 14 teams in the Big Monday schedule are 2011 NCAA Championship participants
  • 12 teams are ranked in an early preseason poll by ESPN.com columnist Charlie Creme
  • ACC, BIG EAST, Big Ten, Big 12 and SEC programs will makeup this year’s schedule
  • The schedule highlights Final Four teams Connecticut and Notre Dame, along with NCAA Champion Texas A&M
  • Connecticut has the most appearances with four, followed by Notre Dame with three
  • Three SEC teams – Kentucky, Tennessee and Vanderbilt, combine for five appearances

For ESPN’s complete Women’s Big Monday schedule, click here.