Sunday, February 2, 2014

My AP Top 25 Ballot: Cincinnati, UConn Both Move Up; Thursday Night Should Be Fun

Crazy week in college basketball this past week, and thank God. Or did you really want to hear more stories about Richard Sherman, or Peyton Manning's legacy, or all the PED suspensions the Seahawks and Broncos had this season (oh wait, no one covering the Super Bowl, to my knowledge, wrote anything about the latter item.)

Anyway, a crazy week in college hoops equals a fun week to fill out my AP Top 25 ballot. No fewer than 15 of the teams I voted for last week lost at least once, with four of them (Oklahoma State, Wisconsin, Pitt and UMass) losing twice.

With that in mind, there's a major overhaul this week. Out go Wisconsin, Pitt, UMass, Memphis and SMU. In come Gonzaga, Virginia, VCU, Oklahoma and Harvard.

Syracuse is my (and likely everybody else's) new No. 1, but the real question is who's No. 2? Do I move Arizona down one notch or two? There's no huge shame in losing to Cal on the road by a basket. But I can't get out of my mind the fact that the Wildcats look like they'll now be without Brandon Ashley for a while, if not the rest of the season, while Florida is getting healthy and now has stud freshman Chris Walker eligible and ready to go. So the Gators are No. 2, 'Zona No. 3.

Elsewhere: Cincinnati moves from No. 11 to 6 after winning at Louisville and at home against UCF. I'm not sure if the Bearcats are the sixth-best team in the country, but with so much tumult among this week's Top 25 teams, Cincy -- which has also won at Memphis this season -- makes the big jump on my ballot.

UConn had just one game this week -- a 37-point dismantling of Houston at Gampel -- but moves up three spots to No. 20, thanks largely to the numerous teams ahead of it that lost. It seems the Huskies are starting to find themselves, a bit off the radar. They could make a big statement Thursday night in Cincinnati against the Bearcats. Should be a fun one.

1.       Syracuse                                              
2.       Florida                                                  
3.       Arizona                                                 
4.       San Diego State                                    
5.       Wichita State                                     
6.       Cincinnati                                            
7.       Villanova                                              
8.       Michigan                                              
9.       Michigan State                                  
10.   Texas                                                    
11.   Kansas                                                  
12.   Saint Louis                                           
13.   Louisville                                              
14.   Kentucky                                             
15.   Duke                                            
16. Creighton                                                     
17.   Iowa                                                      
18.   Iowa State                                          
19.   Oklahoma State                                                
20.   UConn                                                  
21.   Gonzaga                                              
22.   Virginia                                                 
23.   Virginia Commonwealth
24.   Oklahoma
25.   Harvard                               

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dave, why do you think Creighton doesn't get more respect nationally? They play in the third toughest league and are 18-3, have only lost once since Dec. 1st, and is No. 8 in RPI.

A team like Louisville plays in a softer conference, has a 35 RPI, hasn't beat a ranked team yet in four tries, but always seems to rate higher. Do you think it's just the name carrying teams sometimes with writers?

Thanks for posting these.

February 2, 2014 at 8:13 PM 
Blogger David Borges said...

For me, I can't get Creighton getting blitzed at PC out of my mind. Maybe I should. And Louisville won at UConn, which was at the time and, on Monday, will again be ranked.

February 2, 2014 at 8:53 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I forgot at the win at UCONN. I guess I discounted that since UCONN got nailed at Houston.

February 3, 2014 at 1:01 PM 

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