RELATED: The Sneakers Worn for the 50 Best Basketball Performances in NCAA History
RELATED: The Sneakers Worn for the 15 Best Performances in University of Louisville Basketball History

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1980 –  Craig Shelton

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Converse Pro Leather

In the inaugural Big East tournament, the John Thompson's Georgetown Hoyas were led by the hometown hero Craig Shelton. He averaged 16 points a game as Georgetown won the title, and was rightfully named the tournament's first MVP.

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1981 –  Leo Rautins

The Team: Syracuse Orange
The Sneaker: Nike Legend

The Rautins family has secured their legacy at Syracuse. Andy Rautins' success in the orange is only equaled/trumped by his father Leo's success for the Orange. Back in 1981, the senior Rautins  was the first player in Big East to record a triple-double, and in the final vs. Villanova, Rautins played his A-game, earning the MVP.

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1982 –  Eric "Sleepy" Floyd

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Nike Blazer

There are few nicknames better in basketball history than Eric Floyd's in "Sleepy." Sleepy was the king of making opponents go rock-a-bye-baby, as the two-time All-American put Villanova to sleep in the last Big East tournament that would be played outside of Madison Square Garden.

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1983 –  Chris Mullin

The Team: St. John's Red Storm
The Sneaker: Nike Air Force 1

Consider it hometown cooking or just a star player ready to show the world that he was ready for the national stage, but Brooklyn-native Chris Mullin was born for this. In the first of his three-year reign as Big East player of the year, Mullin owned the Big East tournament at Madison Square Garden, and brought home the first tournament title in St. John's history.

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1984 and 1985 –  Patrick Ewing

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Nike Air Force 1

In 1984, the Georgetown Hoyas were on a mission and Patrick Ewing was on a war path, determined to get his elusive national championship. The precursor to his eventual NCAA title was the Hoyas run in the Big East championship, one that ended with Ewing claiming the MVP in an 82-71 victory over Georgetown.

In 1985, the last two Big East tournament MVP's—Mullin and Ewing—squared off in the final. Georgetown made it two tournament wins in a row with an impressive 92-80 victory, and later return to the NCAA championship. Unfortunately for the Hoyas, another Big East foe would stand in their way, as Villanova pulled off the upset 66-64.

Pearl Washington Syracuse Orangemen Nike Dunk

1986 –  Dwayne "Pearl" Washington

The Team: Syracuse Orange
The Sneaker: Nike Dunk

The man known around upstate New York as "Pearl" would begin cementing his legacy at Syracuse with a thrilling performance in the 1986 Big East tournament. Syracuse was on the verge of a second title, but St. Johns took the win 70-69 after Pearl's shot was blocked by Walter Berry in the final moments. Pearl averaged 23 points and 10 assists in their three games during the tourney.

reggie williams nike dunk

1987 –  Reggie Williams

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Nike Dunk

Head coach John Thompson admired the play of Reggie Williams at Georgetown, and in 1987 when the Baltimore-native he led the Big East in scoring, the team in rebounding, steals and blocked shots, and was third in assists, well...Big John had to give this particular team a new nickname: "Reggie and the Miracles." Reggie served the miracle with a 69-59 win in the Big East tournament final.

sherman douglas nike air force 1

1988 –  Sherman Douglas

The Team: Syracuse Orange
The Sneaker: Nike Air Force 1

With a masterful running floater and a passion for distributing the rock, giving a nickname like "The General" to Sherman Douglas is easy to visualize. Douglas led the 'Cuse to a convincing 85-68 win over Villanova in the '88 Big East Final and contributed 24 points in the win.

chris smith nike air force 2

1989 –  Charles Smith

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Nike Air Force 2

This is the best photo we could find of Charles Smith. Yes, he's holding up a Party Gator stuffed animal during the photoshoot of the 1989 Playboy All-American team. Georgetown defeated Syracuse in the championship game 88–79, to win its sixth Big East Tournament championship. I imagine Smith was a Party Gator all throughout the night.

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1990 –  Chris Smith

The Team: Connecticut Huskies
The Sneaker: Nike Air Flight Lite II

Smith was just the second player not from Syracuse or Georgetown (Chris Mullin, St. John's) to win the Big East Tournament MVP. In 1990, Smith's Huskies won their first Big East tournament in the school's history. In doing so, they kicked off the Jim Calhoun era in ernest.

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1991 –  Oliver Taylor

The Team: Seton Hall Pirates
The Sneaker: Nike Ultra Force

Oliver Taylor wasn't on the minds of many prognosticators during the 1991 tourney, but with game-winning shots vs. Pittsburgh in the quarterfinals and Villanova in the semifinals, the Taylor name was becoming household. In the final, Taylor helped finish off Georgetown in the championship game 74–62, giving the Seton Hall its first Big East Tournament championship in the process.

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1992 –  Alonzo Mourning

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Nike Air Force STS

Syracuse defeated Georgetown in the championship game 56–54, to claim its third Big East Tournament championship. However, Alonzo Mourning ruled—setting a then conference record with 76 points scored in three games played.

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1993 –  Terry Dehere

The Team: Seton Hall Pirates
The Sneaker: Nike Air Flight Huarache

The Seton Hall Pirates entered the 1993 Big East tournament with the utmost of focus. The top-seeded squad quickly dispatched of Georgetown and Providence, and when Syracuse stepped to them in the final, the Pirates squashed them by 33 points. Terry Dehere led the way with a barrage of threes and The Hall won their second tourney title.

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1994 –  Michael Smith

The Team: Providence Friars
The Sneaker: Nike Air Force Max

The Providence Friars were the darlings of the 1994 Big East tournament as the 4-seed pulled off the major upset against the top-seeded UConn Huskies in the semifinal. Led by Michael "The Animal" Smith, the Friars the beat Georgetown 74-64 in the final for the school's first Big East title. All hail The Animal.

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1995 –  Kerry Kittles

The Team: Villanova Wildcats
The Sneaker: Nike Air Max 2 Strong

There probably have been cooler hoopers in Big East history than Kerry Kittles, but that list is probably a short one. Wearing the hideously cool 'Nova uniforms, the tall sock/low sock combination and a superb shooting stroke, Kittles led the Wildcats to their first Big East tourney title with a 94-78 victory over Connecticut.

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1996 –  Victor Page

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Air Jordan 11 Concord

Victor Page was just one of two flashy guards on a talented Georgetown team that was ready to reclaim the throne atop of the Big East. The other guard was Allen Iverson, by the way. The Hoyas faced the UConn Huskies in the final, falling to Ray Allen and co. Page's 34-point performance vs. Villanova in the semis and his overall strong play would net him a decent consolation prize, the tourney MVP award.

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1997 –  Scoonie Penn

The Team: Boston College Eagles
The Sneaker: Reebok Swingman

While many remember Scoonie Penn from his glory days as the point guard of the Ohio State Buckeyes, he got his start as the lead guard in Chestnut Hill. BC won their first Big East championship with a 70-58 victory over Villanova in 1997, thanks in no small part to Penn's strong showing.

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1998 –  Khalid El-Amin

The Team: Connecticut Huskies
The Sneaker: Air Jordan 13 

The greatest chunky point guard who ever lived helped Connecticut win their third Big East tournament title with a 69-64 victory over Syracuse in 1998. El-Amin put up 12 points and 6 assists in the final.

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1999 –  Kevin Freeman

The Team: Connecticut Huskies
The Sneaker: Nike Air KG 3

The Connecticut Huskies would repeat the feat as Big East champs in 1999 as UConn big man Kevin Freeman came through in the clutch for Calhoun's club. Many can recollect on memorable UConn players like Khalid El-Amin and Richard Hamilton, but it was Freeman who did a ton of the dirty work for coach Jim Calhoun's squad of that era, and that dirty work helped UConn win their first national title.

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2000 –  Bootsy Thornton

The Team: St. John's Red Storm
The Sneaker: asdfasdf

One of the greatest named hoopers of all-time is Marvin Linwood Thornton. However, anytime the man was on the basketball court, the man simply went by "Bootsy." St. John's defeated Connecticut in the final, 80–70 to earn their third Big East Tournament championship, Bootsy led the way with 22 points.

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2001 –  Troy Bell

The Team: Boston College Eagles
The Sneaker: Reebok Iverson IV

For me, Troy Bell was the first player I can remember hooping for Boston College that I actually thought was cool. The all-time leading scorer in BC history helped the Eagles beat their three opponents in the Big East tourney by a combined 63 points in the process, and with a 79-57 win over Pittsburgh in the title game brought home their second title.

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2002 –  Caron Butler

The Team: Connecticut Huskies
The Sneaker: Air Jordan XI "Space Jam"

In a double-overtime thriller, the Connecticut Huskies defeated the Pitt Panthers 74-65 in the 2002 Big East championship game, winning their fifth Big East Tournament championship in the process. Butler played a whopping 50 minutes in that game and put up a resounding 23 points and 9 rebounds.

julius page adidas t-mac 4

2003 –  Julius Page

The Team: Pitt Panthers
The Sneaker: adidas T-Mac 4

Julius Page's steady performance during the 2003 tournament helped bring the Pitt Panthers their first Big East tourney crown. While winning each game by 18+ points/game, Page put up 13.3 points and 3.7 rebounds on 47.1 percent shooting (16-for-37) in three games and was named the tourney's MVP.

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2004 –  Ben Gordon

The Team: Connecticut Huskies
The Sneaker: Air Jordan XIX

The UConn Huskies took another journey to the national championship in 2004, but before they could battle for the national title, they had to handle some business in the Big East tournament. UConn's ace in the hole? Ben Gordon. The London-born guard set a tournament record with 81 total points.

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2005 –  Hakim Warrick

The Team: Syracuse Orange
The Sneaker: Nike Shox Supremacy

While everyone remembers Hakim Warrick's ridiculous dunked-called-foul in the NCAA final vs. Kansas, few remember his stellar play in the Big East Tournament. Let us refresh your memory: Warrick put the team on his back in Syracuse's 68-59 victory over West Virginia, tallying up 20 points and 13 rebounds and snatching the tourney's MVP.

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2006 –  Gerry McNamara

The Team: Syracuse Orange
The Sneaker: Air Jordan Dub Zero

Syracuse won the Big East tournament in back-to-back years in incredible fashion. 'Cuse was the first team to win 4 games in the tournament. Thanks to a woeful regular season record, the Orange needed a tournament victory to make the NCAAs. McNamara led all tourney scorers with 65 points scored in 4 games, with game winners and clutch threes taking SU over the top.

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2007 –  Jeff Green

The Team: Georgetown Hoyas
The Sneaker: Air Jordan XX2

Jeff Green's performance in the 2007 Big East tournament brought John Thompson III his first tournament title and the school its seventh overall. The combo forward displayed his versatility in a 62-45 win over Pitt  by showing off his jumper and his post game against the overmatched Panther big men. The Hoyas eventually make it all the way to the Final Four before losing to Ohio State in the national semifinal.

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2008 –  Sam Young

The Team: Pitt Panthers
The Sneaker: adidas Pro Model

The 2008 Pitt Panthers came into the Big East tourney as the 7-seed and low expectations. Yet, with players like Sam Young carrying the load, the Panthers got hot and went all the way to win the title. In the 74-65 victory over Georgetown, Young put up 16 points and 6 boards, and also helped defend the rim with 3 blocked shots. 

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2009 –  Jonny Flynn

The Team: Syracuse Orange
The Sneaker: Nike Zoom Flight 95

Jonny Flynn somehow managed to survive the longest game in Big East history vs. UConn (a 6-overtime thriller) and help lead his team to the conference finals vs. Louisville. Louisville outlasted Syracuse and win by 10, but Flynn's performance during the weekend was impressive with a 20.0 points/game average.

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2010 –  Da'Sean Butler

The Team: West Virginia Mountaineers
The Sneaker: Air Jordan V

The Huggie Bear a.k.a. Bob Huggins brought the first Big East tournament title to Morgantown with the assistance of superstar forward Da'Sean Butler. West Virginia defeated Georgetown in a close 60-58 battle and Butler contributed 20 points and 6 rebounds to the effort, earning the MVP honors.

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2011 –  Kemba Walker

The Team: Connecticut Huskies
The Sneaker: Air Jordan 6-17-23

The 2011 Connecticut Huskies took their 7th Big East tournament crown since 1980 along and won their 3rd NCAA title a month later. However, the thing that everyone will always remember was that time that "Kemba crossed up the dude that looks like Waka Flocka Flame."

Poor Gary McGhee.


2012 –  Peyton Siva

The Team: Louisville Cardinals
The Sneaker: adidas Crazy Eights

The Louisville Cardinals defeated the Cincinnati Bearcats 50–44, to win their second Big East championship in school history. Peyton Siva was named the MVP of the tournament, as his 7-seed Cardinals had to win four games to pull off what some felt was an impossible tourney feat. Siva himself finished with a tournament average of 14 points and 6 rebounds.

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2013 –  Peyton Siva

The Team: Louisville Cardinals
The Sneaker: adidas Crazy Quick

Louisville's Peyton Siva is now in exclusive territory in Big East history as the diminutive point guard from Seattle joins the Georgetown big man Patrick Ewing from Jamaica as the only two-time (back-to-back) winners of the Big East MVP award. Siva was able to get the Orange monkey off his back Sunday as his 11 points and 8 assists propelled the Cardinals to the 68-51 victory.

RELATEDThe Sneakers Worn for the 50 Best Basketball Performances in NCAA History
RELATEDThe Sneakers Worn for the 15 Best Performances in University of Louisville Basketball History