We've spent a good bit of time chronicling what a disappointment the much vaunted Big East was in the year's NCAA Tournament and one of the groups that have taken some delight in that has been Big Ten fans... Not likely anymore. Now that the dust has settled, you'd have to say that the Big Ten's seven teams weren't much more impressive than the Big East's 11. Black Shoe Diaries has a great team by team breakdown of the conference did in this year's tourney and it's nothing special.
In fact, despite have less teams in the bracket the Big 10 were responsible for just as many major choke jobs as the Big East and to a couple of the same teams. The most notable Big East chokejobs were Georgetown getting beat by VCU and Pitt being knocked off by Butler. However, those teams went on to upset the Big Ten's Purdue and Wisconsin respectively. #3 seeded Purdue has to be considered amongst the biggest disappointments of any team in this year's bracket.
Then of course, that brings up to Ohio State. While the Big East had the most teams, the Big Ten had the best team. The nation's #1 and the tournament's #1 overall seed, Ohio St. Buckeyes. There's no doubt that #4 Kentucky was a tough Sweet 16 matchup, maybe the toughest team any top seed had met this year... but the fact is when you're the top team in the nation and have been for most of the year you're expected to win tough games, and you're expected to get past the Sweet 16. Ohio State did not.
Both the Big East and Big Ten put two teams in the Sweet 16, but only the Big East put a team in the Elite 8. While both conferences will be hanging their head at this point, UConn still has a chance to save the integrity of the Big East a bit. If they get a team in the Final Four or maybe even a national champion, the Big East won't leave this tourney looking quite so bad.