Another week, another OTH College Basketball Rankings list is here for your amusement. And it was a fantastic week of games, headlined by two top-five teams playing each other in conference play. This week also saw plenty of top twenty-five teams lose games. It also saw many of the top teams go undefeated, which means the top may not change very much. However, that headliner game we mentioned early will stir up some controversy, as the winner made a big move. This will be one of our more debatable rankings lists, as we will punish some teams more than others. So who
1. Baylor (13-1) Last Week 5
The Baylor Bears are your number one team in our rankings for Week 10. They replace Gonzaga after the most impressive college basketball win this year. Firstly, they beat #22 ranked Texas Tech on the road by five. Baylor then went into Allen Fieldhouse, a place they have never won, and defeated the #3 ranked Kansas Jayhawks. Not only did they beat a top-five team on the road, but they did it by double-digits. Jared Butler lead all scorers with 22 points for Baylor fans. Sorry Gonzaga fans, but your lack of competition in conference play hurt you this week. Baylor beat two ranked teams on the road this week and deserves to be number one.
2. Gonzaga (18-1) Last Week 1
Another dominant week for the Gonzaga Bulldogs. They up two dominant road victories over weaker West Coast Conference opponents. Joel Ayayi had a big 20 point night on Thursday night as Gonzaga beat San Diego by 44 points. Mark Few’s team followed that up with a 25 point victory over the Loyola Marymount Lions. Gonzaga had five players hit double-digit points, including 16 from Filip Petrusev. Lack of competition has haunted Gonzaga, but this week will be a good test. They take on 15-2 Santa Clara at home and 13-5 BYU at home as well. Two more wins would go a long way in reclaiming the top spot on our College Basketball rankings
3. Duke Blue Devils (13-1) Last Week 2
The Duke Blue Devils continue to roll in Atlantic Coast Conference play, picking up two wins this week. They faced a gritty Georgia Tech team on Wednesday at the McCamish Pavillion. They led by 11 at halftime, but Georgia Tech played them tight to last few minutes before Duke pulled away for the nine-point win. Tre Jones played all but one minute that game, finishing with 16 points, eight rebounds and seven assists. Duke then returned home to stomp Wake Forest by 31 points, led by Tre Jones 23 points. Duke will face their toughest ACC opponent this week, as they welcome Louisville to Coach K’s house. The ACC may be having a down year, but Louisville is legit. If Duke does not bring their best they will fall out of the top five.
4. Auburn (15-0) Last Week 4
I had many people messaging me this week demanding that the Auburn Tigers move up this list. And Auburn certainly has made their case all year, but their first game this week left us a tad worried. They took on the number 12 Vanderbilt Commodores and only won by four points. Now while a win is still good to see, we would have liked to see them play better. Auburn did impress us on Saturday, as they beat Georgia by 22 points. Samir Doughty had a solid 17 point, six rebounds, and four-assist game. Auburn will really impress us if they go 2-0 once again this week. Home wins are great and all, but road wins over Alabama and Florida would all but solidify a top-three spot on our College Basketball rankings list.
5. Butler (14-1) Last Week 6
Definitely, the toughest internal debate I had was between these next two teams. But I had to give the edge to the Butler Bulldogs by the slimmest of margins. The Big East is always a battle and Butler currently has the best record and is undefeated in conference play. They played Providence on the road this week and won by 12 points, led by Kamar Baldwin’s 17 point outing. The Bulldogs lone loss this year is by one point on the road to our number one team in the rankings Baylor. Seton Hall at home and DePaul on the road will be two great conference tests. Those games will show if this team warrants our fifth spot.
6. San Diego State (17-0) Last Week 8
If we could put San Diego State 5B we would, but sadly they just move up to sixth in our College Basketball rankings. Two double-digit victories for the Aztecs this week moves them to 17-0 on the year. Malachi Flynn had 19 points and four assists in San Diego State’s twenty-point road victory over Wyoming. KJ Feagin then led the Aztecs with 23 points as they won by 18 points at the Viejas Arena. Fresno State and Nevada are up next for the Aztecs, who should be undefeated still next week.
7. Oregon (14-3) Last Week 9
Oregon moves up two spots after the Ducks went 2-0 this week. Firstly the Ducks welcomed the Arizona Wildcats to the Matthew Knight Arena. It was a back and forth game that went to overtime. Oregon ultimately held on for the one-point win. Will Richardson led all scorers with 21 as Oregon had four players hit double-digit scoring. Oregon also defeated Arizona State by nine points led by Payton Prichard’s 29 points. Oregon goes on their Washington road trip this week as they play Washington State and Washington. Oregon would move to 5-1 in Pac 12 play with two road wins.
8. Kansas (12-3) Last Week 3
The Jayhawks tumble down our list after a double-digit home loss to Baylor. Now we still love the Jayhawks at Overtime Heroics, as all their losses are defendable. Anyone could have lost to Duke, Villanova, and Baylor, given they all are ranked teams. But now is the time for this team to grow and learn from these losses. Devon Dotson struggled against Baylor, scoring just nine points, and will need to bounce back quickly. Bill Self and company face Oklahoma and Texas on the road this week. Two wins are needed if they want to move back up the rankings.
9. Florida State (14-2) Last Week 10
Florida State moves up one spot on our College Basketball Rankings with their victory over Wake Forest. The Seminoles had three players score more than 13 points, led by Devin Vassell’s 17. Florida State played great defense, turning over the Demon Deacons 17 times in their 10 point road win. Florida State will welcome Virginia to town on Wednesday night, before traveling to Miami. Both games will be tough and Leonard Hamilton’s guys could move up a few spots with some ACC wins.
10. Louisville (13-3) Last Week 13
The Cardinals just sneak back into the top ten after two victories in ACC play. It began with a visit from Miami on Tuesday, which resulted in a 16 point Louisville win. Jordan Nwora had a 19 point, 12 rebounds double-double in the home win. Louisville then traveled to the Joyce Center to play a gritty Notre Dame team. Louisville led by 12 at halftime but weathered a late storm from John Mooney to win by three. Dwayne Sutton had an impressive 10 point, 14 rebounds double-double to hold on. Louisville travels to Pittsburgh before a road game with Duke on Saturday. A road win over Duke would skyrocket this team up the rankings, passing Duke in the process.
11. Kentucky (12-3) Last Week 14
John Calipari’s Kentucky team is knocking on the door of the top ten once again after slipping in mid-December. The Wildcats have now won four games in a row, including two wins this past week. They opened by visiting Georgia, where they were down six points at halftime. Kentucky rallied outscoring Georgia 47-32 in the second half to win by nine. Kentucky then rolled over the Crimson Tide by nine on Saturday, led by Ashton Hagans 15 points. Kentucky plays South Carolina and Arkansas on the road this week, which are always tough buildings to win in. Two wins would be huge for Kentucky’s chances of cracking the top ten.
12. Villanova (12-3) Last Week 16
Villanova moves up four spots after two Big East conference wins. They defeated Creighton on the road by five on Tuesday led by Collin Gillespie’s 24 points. Villanova then downed Georgetown at home by 14 points on Saturday. Saddiq Bey had a monster night, scoring 33 points on just 15 field goal attempts. DePaul and UConn will both be visiting Villanova this week for Big East play. Villanova has won two games in a row and let’s hope they extend it to four for their ranking’s sake.
13. Dayton (14-2) Last Week 19
Flying high is the Dayton Flyers at number 13. Dayton benefitted greatly from others losing but defeated lowly Massachusetts nonetheless to move up six spots. The Flyers had five players with more than ten points, including Obi Toppin who had 16. VCU will travel to take on Dayton at home, which will be a tough A10 matchup. A victory there combined with a road win over Saint Louis would improve the Dayton stock greatly.
14. West Virginia (13-2) Last Week 20
West Virginia just continues to beat good basketball teams. Bob Huggins team was able to knock off #22 ranked Texas Tech this past week. They won by 12 points at home thanks to Oscar Tshiebwe 17 rebound performance. They also beat Oklahoma State on the road earlier in the week by 14. Tough week ahead yet against for the Mountaineers. They battle TCU at home, before traveling to take on a struggling Kansas State team.
15. Wichita State (15-1) Last Week 21
The Shockers continue to shock the world by picking up their fifteenth win this past week. Wichita State beat a talented Memphis team by nine points led by Jamarius Burton’s 16 points. Wichita State followed that up with a huge double-overtime win over UConn. They were on the road and led at the half before UConn stormed back. Jaime Echenique led the Shockers with 19 points as they squeaked out the victory. A road game with Temple and a home game with Houston awaits this week. Two more wins mean a bigger rise up our rankings.
16. Michigan State (13-4) Last Week 7
The Spartans were riding high for a number of weeks but got smacked in the mouth by Purdue. They lost by 29 points on the road and struggled to get anything going against Purdue’s smothering defense. Cassius Winston scored just 10 points on 13 field goal attempts and the Spartans as a team shot 35%. Michigan State must now welcome Wisconsin to their home court this coming week. Let’s see if they can rally from their humiliating defeat.
17. Maryland (13-3) Last Week 11
The Terrapins suffered a tough loss this week to a talented Iowa team. Maryland lost by 18 on the road, scoring just 49 points on 33% shooting as a team. This was after their huge twelve point win over Ohio State earlier in the week. The fact this team is so hot and cold worries me, which is why they dropped so many spots, despite a ranked victory. If they can knock off Purdue at home that would calm this writer’s nerves.
18. Seton Hall (12-4) Last Week NR
Seton Hall shoots up our rankings list, returning to number 18 overall. They are on a six-game winning streak and won two huge conference games this week. They beat a tough Xavier team on the road by 12, which was a huge victory for them. They followed that up with a 14 point win over Marquette at home. Do not let the four losses fool you, this is a talented group. Wins over Butler and St Johns on the road this week would spike their College Basketball rankings even further.
19. Ohio State (11-5) Last Week 12
The Buckeyes have lost four in a row, two of which were to ranked teams. One of those teams was Maryland this past week, as they lost by 12 points. They are currently 13th in the Big Ten as well, so this team needs a major overhaul. Luckily lowly Nebraska comes to the Value City Arena Tuesday night, so they shock break their losing streak in that game. They then travel to take on Penn State on Saturday. A loss in either game would likely mean an even further drop on this list.
20. Memphis (13-3) Last Week 15
The Memphis Tiger just cling onto life on our rankings list. Now many people gave up on this team after James Wiseman decided to leave the program. More people decided to jump off the Memphis train this week after their loss against Wichita State. Luckily Memphis was able to narrowly survive against South Florida, winning by just four points. Overtime Heroics still loves their Tigers basketball so we could not drop them off the rankings. Cincinnati will be a tough test on Thursday for this young team. Penny Hardaway needs to prove this team can compete come March.
21. Colorado Buffaloes (13-3) Last Week NR
Colorado makes another appearance on our College Basketball rankings after an impressive victory. The Buffaloes blew out Utah badly by 39 points at home on Sunday. McKinley Wright IV had 16 points, eight assists, and seven rebounds in the win. Colorado sits third in the Pac 12 and will visit Arizona State on Thursday and Arizona on Saturday. Beating the Sun Devils and Wildcats keeps them on this list for another week and would move them up.
22. Indiana (13-3) Last Week NR
The Hoosiers finally crack our list after an impressive week. Indiana sits third in the tough Big Ten conference and have won two games in a row. Their biggest win of the year came on Saturday when the beat #11 Ohio State by 12 points. Rob Phinisee had 13 points and seven rebounds in that one. Indiana will take on Rutgers on Wednesday night, followed by Nebraska on Saturday. Both are road games, so victories would impress us, even though they are lower ranked teams.
23. Michigan (11-5) Last Week 22
The Wolverines have been struggling over the past month or so. They have lost five games in that time frame, including this past week to Minnesota. So you might be wondering what keeps them on your list. Their victories over Gonzaga, Iowa, and Purdue. Now they face Iowa again, this time on the road this week. A loss there would all but seal Juwan Howard’s team’s fate of dropping off the College Basketball rankings.
24. Iowa (11-5) Last Week NR
People may be a tiny bit confused by having this five loss team on the list, but they deserve the spot. Teams like Virginia Tech & Stanford may have fewer losses, but Iowa has had the tougher schedule. They lost to Nebraska on the road to start the week, but their second game is what warrants the final spot. They welcomed Maryland to town and blew them out by 18 points. Luka Garza and Joe Wieskamp both had 20 point double-doubles in the victory. If Iowa can knock off Northwestern on the road and Michigan at home this week, they will prove they deserve this spot.
25. Liberty (18-1) Last Week NR
A team that dropped off our list a few weeks ago returns and that is the Liberty Flames. The Atlantic Sun may not be a premier conference, but a team with just one loss this point in the season has to be mentioned. This team has won four games in a row, including a win over Jacksonville on Saturday. Liberty allowed just 37 points in that victory, which is phenomenal, even against an inferior opponent. Lipscomb this coming Saturday should spell another win for the Flames. We want to see this team do great things this year, especially in March.
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