Last season: 33-5, 13-3
Coach: Geno Auriemma, 28th season
Keep an eye on: C Breanna Stewart
The skinny: The Huskies have assembled one of the deepest rosters in their history and seem intent on avenging back-to-back national semifinal defeats to Notre Dame. The freshman class – Stewart, F Morgan Tuck and G Moriah Jefferson – has the potential to be game-changing almost immediately
Last season: 35-4, 15-1
Coach: Muffet McGraw, 26th season
Top Players: G Skylar Diggins, C Natalie Achonwa, G Kayla McBride
Keep an eye on: G Jewell Loyd
The skinny: This could be Notre Dame's final season in the Big East before its departure to the ACC. The Irish have played – and lost – the past two national championship games, but are buoyed by Diggins, their first-team All-American. Watch freshmen guards Michaela Mabrey and Jewell Loyd.
Last season: 23-10, 10-6
Coach: Jeff Walz, 6th season
Top Players: G Shoni Schimmel, G Monique Reid, F Asia Taylor
Keep an eye on: F Sara Hammond
The skinny: Injuries have plagued the Cardinals in the preseason, but Walz remains confident. Schimmel was a Big East first-team pick last season and Bria Smith made the rookie team. Hammond, a Kentucky native, is very highly regarded.
Last season: 24-10, 13-3