Overtime Heroics College Basketball Rankings is back with it’s Week 9 list. We have now crossed the two-month mark in the college basketball season. Teams are starting to take shape and some contenders are starting to emerge. We saw a lot of great games, including Kansas versus West Virginia and Florida State versus Louisville. All of our top three teams went undefeated this week, but after that plenty of ranked teams lost. So who fell the most due to their loss? And who moved up due to others stumbling?
1. Gonzaga (16-1) Last Week 1
Gonzaga had a very solid week picking up three victories in the process. They defeated lowly Detroit, by 21 points, despite being 34 point favorites going in. They then followed that up with a road victory over Portland, led by Killian Tillie’s 22 points. Once again they were heavy favorites by 23 points but only won by 13. Lastly, they took on Pepperdine at home, winning by just five points. Once again being 21 point favorites they did not win as comfortably as they should have. Despite not covering the spread in any game, they went 3-0 and hold down the number one spot for another week.
2. Duke Blue Devils (11-1) Last Week 2
Coach K and the Duke Blue Devils also hold down the second spot this week. Duke’s victories were far more impressive than the Bulldogs. They beat Boston College by 39, led by Matthew Hurt’s 25 point night and Tre Jones ten assists. What was even more impressive was when Duke visited the Miami Hurricanes on Saturday. They won by 33, as Vernon Carey Jr. had 24 points, while Cassius Stanley had 20. Wendell Moore suffered a broken hand, so that will hurt Duke long term for sure. Duke’s lone game this week is Georgia Tech on the road, which should be another victory. If Duke keeps winning ACC games they will eventually be number one in our College Basketball Rankings.
3. Kansas (11-2) Last Week 3
Big victory for the Kansas Jayhawks this week over West Virginia. The Jayhawks were down six a halftime and rallied to pick up the win at the Allen Fieldhouse. Udoka Azubuike had a huge 17 points, 11 rebound game to go along with six blocks. Kansas has two more big conference games this coming week as well. They travel to take on Iowa State, before returning home to take on Baylor. Two victories could mean a big jump in Overtime Heroics rankings.
4. Auburn (13-0) Last Week 8
The Tigers are still undefeated, as they defeated Mississippi State on the road this past week. They won by twelve, as five players hit double-digit scoring, led by J’Von McCormick’s 28 points. Their record is tough to ignore, but this week starts a string of tough games for Auburn. They welcome 8-5 Vanderbilt and 10-3 Georgia to the Auburn Arena. The SEC may not be as strong as years past, but if they continue winning we cannot displace them from the top five.
5. Baylor (11-1) Last Week 9
The Baylor Bears went undefeated this week in two contests and were rewarded for it. Now Top 5 may be generous, but with others losing we are giving them some credit. Baylor defeated Jackson State by 26 and Texas by 15, which is great for them. Now what could truly take this team over the top and justify this spot is coming this week. Baylor plays Texas Tech and Kansas on the road this week. No wins mean Baylor free falls, one win means a slight drop, and two wins mean top three. Plenty to fight for this week for the Baylor Bears.
6. Butler (14-1) Last Week 12
The Bulldogs are skyrocketing up our standings as they continue to win games. They are on a five-game winning streak and sit tops of the Big East conference. Butler knocked off 11-4 St Johns to begin the week, led by Kamar Baldwins 19 points. They followed it up with a win over 12-3 Creighton team. Baldwin led the way with 20 points and Sean McDermott’s 18 points and 11 rebounds game. Butler will visit the Dunkin’ Donuts Center to take on Providence. We will see if their win streak extends to six games so they can move up our College Basketball Rankings.
7. Michigan State (12-3) Last Week 11
The preseason #1 team in the nation are starting to find their groove. Despite three losses, the Michigan State Spartans are playing very well. They are on a seven-game win streak, including two wins this past week. They defeated Illinois by 20 at home, before defeating Michigan by 18 at home on Sunday. Cassius Winston had a huge 32 point night against Michigan to lead the Spartans. Minnesota and Purdue are the two opponents for Michigan State this week. Overtime Heroics hopes their win streak continues so they have an outside shot at the top five.
8. San Diego State (15-0) Last Week 16
As one of only two undefeated teams left in college basketball, we are finally giving the Aztecs their just due. Overtime Heroics questioned San Diego State’s lackluster schedule, but they had a statement win. They played the Utah State Aggies on the road and won by nine. Malachi Flynn had a 22 point game as the Aztecs held the Aggies to just 26% shooting from three. Wyoming and Boise State are up next and we expect two more W’s to come from those matchups.
9. Oregon (12-3) Last Week 6
Up and down week for the Ducks this week as they went .500 this past week. They played two tough road games, the first of which was a loss to Colorado by nine. They shot just 17% from behind the arc in that game, which ended up being their downfall. Two days later they defeated a good Utah team on the road by five. That game they shot 35% from three-point land. Oregon welcomes Arizona and Arizona State this week. Two wins will likely move them back near or into the top five College Basketball Rankings.
10. Florida State (10-2) Last Week 21
The Seminoles picked up their biggest win of this season this past week. Knocking off a top ten team, on the road, and by double digits is huge. M.J. Walker had 23 points in the win and Trent Forrest scored 20. Florida State has now won six straight games to over into the top ten of the CBB Rankings. Next up for Florida State is Wake Forest on the road, which is a tough place to win. A victory over the Demon Deacons would be big for Leonard Hamilton’s group.
11. Maryland (12-2) Last Week 13
Maryland with a big win over Indiana this past week to move up two spots on the CBB Rankings. They won by 16 after Jalen Smith had a 19 point game. Maryland was solid defensively too, as Indiana shot just 36% as a team to Maryland’s 39%. This week will be huge, as they take on Ohio State at home. Not only that, but they then travel to Iowa to take on the Hawkeyes Friday night. Huge week for Maryland and their rankings spot is in Jeopardy.
12. Ohio State (11-3) Last Week 7
The Buckeyes had a tough win to rivals Wisconsin at home this week. They could have easily dropped much further in our CBB Rankings. Two straight losses are tough, and as stated previously they play Maryland on Tuesday. They must contain Anthony Cowan Jr. in order to take this one. They also play Indiana on the road this week, another tough game. Much like Maryland, their College Basketball Rankings spot could be in trouble.
13. Louisville (11-3) Last Week 4
Overtime Heroics gave Louisville the benefit of the doubt after losing to Kentucky last week. But to follow it up with a loss to Florida State really killed their rankings. Yes, Florida State is ranked, but to lose by double-digits at home makes this a really bad loss. Jordan Nwora even had 32 points and 10 rebounds in that game and they still got beat down. Louisville will try to end their losing streak at two when they welcome Miami this week.
14. Kentucky (10-3) Last Week 17
John Calipari’s young team continues to rise back up the standings after another win this week. They welcomed Missouri to their building and won by double-digits. Nick Richards and Immanuel Quickley both had over twenty points as they won fairly handily. Kentucky has a big week ahead, traveling to Georgia for a tough SEC matchup with the Bulldogs. They then return home to take on Alabama on Saturday. If this were football, we would likely see them go 0-2, but we think it will be the opposite.
15. Memphis (12-2) Last Week 5
We here at Overtime Heroics went out on a limb with Memphis and they disappointed us. Sure Georgia is a formidable opponent, but home losses are never great. They lost by three despite Precious Achiuwa’s 20 points and 15 rebounds game. Now Memphis did not have Jared Jeffries for this game, but Boogie Ellis only had 10 points on 2/7 shooting. If Memphis wants to make amends then they better knock off Wichita State on the road. A win there plus a South Florida road win could right the ship immediately.
16. Villanova (10-3) Last Week 10
Jay Wright’s team tumbles down our CBB Rankings after a tough loss to Marquette. They lost by 11 on the road and shot 25 less free throws. That is staggering and Villanova needs to recover quickly. They travel to take on Creighton this week, who just lost to Butler. They also play Georgetown at home, who is a talented squad. Collin Gillespie and Saddiq Bey will both need to shot the ball well to go undefeated this week.
17. Virginia (11-2) Last Week 18
The Cavaliers are defensive juggernauts this year, but the offense continues to lag behind. Yes holding Virginia Tech to just 39 points on 27% shooting is great. But 65 points scored is still quite average, especially at home when they were dominating the game. Boston College on the road and Syracuse at home are both trap games for this team. If they can cross 70 points in either we will be greatly impressed.
18. Penn State (10-2) Last Week 20
Penn State picked up an impressive ranked win over Iowa this past week. They held on for a three-point victory over the Hawkeyes, and Overtime Heroics is impressed. The Nittany Lions are 2-1 in conference play thus far in the always tough Big Ten. Despite giving up 34 points to Iowa’s Luka Garza, the Lions made 11 threes and scored 89 points as a team. While we do not like seeing them give up 86 points defensively they got the victory nonetheless. Rutgers on the road and Wisconsin at home awaits this team in the next five days.
19. Dayton (13-2) Last Week 19
Dayton remaining at 19 may be Overtime Heroics’ most questionable decision. The Flyers may have gone 3-0, but none of their victories really stood out to us. North Florida, La Salle & St. Joe’s are not exactly Duke or Kentucky. Now two of their wins were on the road, which is great to see. But we would really like Dayton to start playing some better competition. That won’t change this week, given they play 6-8 Massachusetts. But they play Virginia Commonwealth the following week, so a victory there would improve the Flyers stock greatly.
20. West Virginia (11-2) Last Week 14
Tough loss for the Mountaineers this past weekend as they lost in Kansas. They led by six at halftime before being outscored by 13 in the second half. Oscar Tshiebwe was a monster, finishing with 17 points and rebounds in the contest. Oklahoma State will welcome Bob Huggins team next before West Virginia returns home to play Texas Tech. West Virginia will need to go at least .500 this week or risk being dropped from the College Basketball Rankings.
21. Wichita State (13-1) Last Week 24
The Shockers just keep winning, this time over Ole Miss. Their twenty point home victory moved them up to the 21st spot on our CBB Rankings. Winners of 7 in a row, Wichita State continues to beat the teams that they should. They welcome a young and talented team in Memphis to the Charles Koch Arena Thursday night. We cannot wait for that game.
22. Michigan (10-4) Last Week 15
It was a rough week for Michigan Wolverine fans. They go beat soundly in both football and basketball. Juwan Howard’s team is our only four-loss team on the CBB Rankings, mostly due to success in November and December. Michigan will look to rebound in Big Ten play against Purdue and Minnesota this week. One home game and one road game will be great tests for this program.
23. Texas Tech (10-3) Last Week NR
The Red Raiders return to the College Basketball Rankings after a short hiatus. The question is will this return be short lived? They beat up on Oklahoma State by 35 points this week and have won five games in a row. Despite that win, this week will truly show what Texas Tech is made of. They welcome Baylor to their house before travelling to play West Virginia. Both are top 25 teams and will be tough tests.
24. Arizona (11-3) Last Week 25
The Wildcats finally played a game again, as they handed Arizona State a huge loss. Arizona won by 28 led by Zeke Nnaji’s double-double and three other Arizona players hitting double-digit points. We love to see that they held the Sun Devils to just 47 points, but we need to see more. Oregon on the road and Oregon State at home will show us a lot this week. A win over a talented team like Oregon would go a long way in Arizona making it back into the top 20.
25. Arkansas (12-1) Last Week NR
Making their first appearance on the Overtime Heroics rankings this year is the Arkansas Razorbacks. They would have made it sooner had it not bean for their Western Kentucky loss in early December. The Razorbacks are on a four-game winning streak, led by Mason Jones 19 points per game. Arkansas opened up SEC play with a win over Texas A&M and will have two road games this week as well. LSU and Mississippi State will both be tough opponents and we hope to see the Razorbacks remain on our College Basketball Rankings.
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