1. Duke (19-2, 7-1 ACC; 0)
2. Virginia (20-1, 8-1 ACC; 0)
3. Tennessee (19-1, 8-0 SEC; 0)
4. Gonzaga (21-2, 8-0 WCC; +3)
5. Michigan (20-2, 9-2 Big Ten; -1)
6. Kansas (17-5, 6-3 Big XII; 0)
7. Michigan State (18-4, 9-2 Big Ten; -2)
8. Kentucky (18-3, 7-1 SEC; +1)
9. North Carolina (17-4, 7-1 ACC; +2)
10. Houston (21-1, 8-1 AAC; 0)
11. Nevada (21-1, 8-1 MWC; -3)
12. Virginia Tech (18-3, 7-2 ACC; +6)
13. Marquette (19-3, 8-1 Big East; 0)
14. Purdue (16-6, 9-2 Big Ten; 0)
15. Villanova (18-4, 9-0 Big East; +2)
16. Iowa State (17-5, 6-3 Big XII; +7)
17. LSU (17-4, 7-1 SEC; -5)
18. Cincinnati (19-3, 8-1 AAC; +3)
19. Louisville (16-6, 7-2 ACC; -3)
20. Texas Tech (17-5, 5-4 Big XII; +2)
21. Buffalo (18-3, 7-2 MAC; -1)
22. Wisconsin (16-6, 8-3 Big Ten; +6)
23. Mississippi State (16-5, 4-4 SEC; +2)
24. Washington (18-4, 9-0 Pac-12; +5)
25. Maryland (17-6, 8-4 Big Ten; -1)
26-30. Iowa, Kansas State, Auburn, Florida State, Oklahoma
It looked like it was going to be a pretty smooth week for the top teams in the country until the weekend hit and the strength of the Big Ten reared its ugly head over the weekend. Both Michigan and Michigan State took Ls in their weekend matchup, Michigan getting thumped on the road at Iowa, and Michigan State surprisingly lost to Indiana at home in overtime. Kansas also lost earlier in the week, at Texas, but a win over Texas Tech on the weekend made sure that they didn’t lose ground, and the top three held serve yet again.
Wisconsin and Washington are new teams in the top 25 this week. Two big wins for the Badgers this week – Nebraska on the road, and Maryland at home, see them jump up from #28 into the top 25. Washington, for their part, looks like the class of the Pac-12 – with each team having played nine games, they are still unbeaten in conference play and have a three-game lead over USC, Arizona State & Oregon State. This week saw them pick up another home sweep, this time over USC and UCLA, and they travel to Arizona this week for their biggest week of the season. If they can win in Tucson and Tempe to go to 11-0, it’ll be time to think about them going undefeated in conference play.
Oklahoma is one of the teams dropping out this week, and oh how the mighty have fallen. I think this algorithm may have seriously overestimated them, as it did seem a little presumptive to put them at #3 as of New Year’s Eve. This week, the Sooners fell from #15 all the way out of the top 25, and they were in the top ten as recently as three weeks ago. This week, they lost two games, both pretty rough in their own ways. First, a 30-point shellacking at the hands of Baylor, and then getting beat by WVU in Morgantown on Saturday, just the second conference win for the Mountaineers. At 3-6 in conference play, the focus for Oklahoma now should just be on making the tournament. It seems as though they still will, but there’s work to do.
The other team falling out is also from the Big XII, TCU. The Frogs also got their butts kicked by Baylor this week, and also lost earlier in the week to Texas Tech. They had been #19 last week, but as you can see above aren’t even in the top 30 this week. In fact, they now sit one spot behind Baylor, whose rise has been pretty meteoric.
Notable unranked teams include #31 Syracuse, #32 Baylor, #33 TCU, #35 Arizona State, #37 Ohio State, #41 Texas, #53 Arkansas, #58 NC State, #59 Indiana, #64 Arizona, #65 Florida, #88 UCLA, #100 Saint Louis, #101 Missouri, #135 Illinois State, #157 Illinois, and #309 SIUE. The lowest-ranked team in America is #353 Delaware State yet again, as UNC-Asheville picked up their first conference win to squeak ahead to #352. Every team in Division I now has at least one win against another, and of course there aren’t any undefeated teams left yet either. In fact, there are just four teams each that are left with only one win or one loss, so there’s a bit of balance out there somewhere.
Games of the Week: I want to apologize on BracketBot’s behalf for its recommendation that you watch Virginia Tech vs. NC State last weekend – it was rated as the sixth-best game of the week going in, but it certainly didn’t go that way. Coming up this week, we have a rematch of one of the best games of the year so far, and one of the highest-rated games I’ve ever seen – it’s #1 visiting #2!
1. Duke @ Virginia (-2.5), Saturday
2. Auburn (-1) @ LSU, Saturday
3. Kentucky (-3) @ Mississippi State, Saturday
4. Iowa State (-1) @ Oklahoma, Monday
5. Texas Tech @ Oklahoma (even), Saturday
6. Louisville @ Florida State (even), Saturday
7. Kansas (-1.5) @ Kansas State, Tuesday
8. LSU @ Mississippi State (-2), Wednesday
9. Wisconsin @ Michigan (-6), Saturday
10. Louisville @ Virginia Tech (-6), Monday
Alright y’all, that’s it for this week! Have a good one, and I hope your team wins this week!