BracketBot Power Rankings: February 18, 2020

1. Kansas (22-3, 12-1 Big XII; 0)
2. Duke (22-3, 12-2 ACC; 0)
3. Baylor (23-1, 12-0 Big XII; 0)
4. San Diego State (25-0, 15-0 MWC; 0)
5. Gonzaga (26-1, 12-0 WCC; 0)
6. Dayton (23-2, 12-0 A-10; +1)
7. Maryland (21-4, 11-3 Big Ten; +2)
8. Auburn (22-3, 9-3 SEC; 0)
9. Louisville (21-5, 12-3 ACC; -3)
10. Florida State (21-4, 11-3 ACC; +1)
11. West Virginia (18-7, 6-6 Big XII; -1)
12. Oregon (20-6, 9-4 Pac-12; +2)
13. Villanova (19-6, 8-4 Big East; +2)
14. Colorado (20-6, 9-4 Pac-12; -1)
15. Arizona (18-7, 8-4 Pac-12; +2)
16. Penn State (20-5, 10-4 Big Ten; +2)
17. Creighton (19-6, 9-4 Big East; +8)
18. Seton Hall (18-7, 10-3 Big East; -6)
19. Kentucky (20-5, 10-2 SEC; -3)
20. Marquette (17-7, 7-5 Big East; -1)
21. Houston (20-6, 10-3 AAC; -1)
22. Ohio State (17-8, 7-7 Big Ten; +7)
23. Michigan State (17-9, 9-6 Big Ten; -2)
24. Butler (19-7, 7-6 Big East; -1)
25. N Iowa (20-4, 11-3 MVC; -3)
26-30. LSU, BYU, Wichita State, Rhode Island, Iowa

Another week that sees the top of the pile sit pretty steady – let’s recap the week (or 8 days) that were in college basketball!

#1 KANSAS and #3 BAYLOR are in their familiar spots as they both continue to roll, but this week is different because we finally see the rematch this weekend! The only loss either of them has in conference play came back on January 11 when Baylor won in Lawrence – now KU gets a chance for revenge down in Waco, TX. I think it might be the most must-watch game of the entire season – I have Kansas as slight favorites, but it’s a 52%-48% split.

It was a pretty awful week for #9 LOUISVILLE, who dropped a pair of road games, yes, but road games they really should be winning, at #109 Georgia Tech and #89 Clemson. Because it’s so late in the season, the body of work for the Cards is pretty strong so the drop is only three spots – if this were December they’d have fallen much farther. They have a couple of chances to get right this week (home matchups with #72 Syracuse and #133 North Carolina) before going to Tallahassee next week to face #10 Florida State.

It was also a pretty bad week for #11 WEST VIRGINIA, although this is a little more understandable since they were tasked with playing Kansas and Baylor back to back. Both were losses in the 10-point range and the Mountaineers now find themselves sitting at just 6-6 in Big 12 play and clearly, clearly behind the conference’s big 2. For a team that has spent a lot of this season in my top 5 it’s a little disappointing.

Two Big East teams in the middle of this pack saw their fates shoot in opposite directions this week, and it started when they met in New Jersey on Wednesday. Visiting #17 CREIGHTON was victorious over #18 SETON HALL, and it continued into the weekend with the Bluejays beating #114 DePaul and Seton Hall losing to #67 Providence. Last week the Hall held a 3-game lead in the Big East standings, and that’s suddenly down to just a single game with 5 to play. It doesn’t get easier, either; Seton Hall still has to play all four of the conference’s other ranked teams once each, starting with #24 Butler on Thursday.

One team enjoying a surprising bit of resurgence is the only team moving into the top 25 this week, #22 OHIO STATE! tOSU beat #33 Rutgers and #62 Purdue this week, and have won 5 of 6 to get back to the .500 mark in conference play. For a second there, it looked like they might be in danger of even throwing away a tournament bid, but they’re pretty safe again now.

#26 LSU is the team that consequently falls out of the top 25. They had been pretty high up in these rankings when they sat 8-0 in SEC play, but since then these Tigers have lost 3 of 4, including over the weekend against Alabama, and are a game behind Kentucky atop the SEC standings now.

Notable unranked teams include #33 Rutgers, #34 Virginia, #35 Michigan, #37 USC, #40 Florida, #41 Arizona State, #43 Arkansas, #48 Illinois, #49 Indiana, #52 Liberty, #60 Stanford, #62 Purdue, #66 Saint Louis, #69 Minnesota, #91 UCLA, #104 TCU, #106 Washington, #113 Ole Miss, #116 Missouri, #130 Murray State, #133 North Carolina, #151 Southern Illinois, #180 California, #247 Illinois State, #337 SIUE and #338 SEMO. As always, if you’re interested in seeing where your team is placed, just ask and I’ll put them into this section – or you can always check out the daily full rankings at thebracketbot.com/rankings.

Games of the Week – times are Central
Tuesday: Creighton/Marquette, 7:30 on FS1; Marquette, 79-75
Wednesday: Michigan/Rutgers, 6:00 on BTN; Rutgers, 66-64
Thursday: Ohio State/Iowa, 6:00 on ESPN; Iowa, 73-72
Friday: VCU/Saint Louis, 8:00 on ESPN2; SLU, 68-67
Saturday: Kansas/Baylor, 11:00 AM on ESPN; Kansas 64-63
Sunday: Maryland/Ohio State, 3:00 on CBS; Ohio State, 66-63
Game of the Week: no surprise, it’s Kansas/Baylor.

That’s it for the week! I hope all your favorite teams win!

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