Week five provided more interesting results for us to discuss in our rankings this week. Let’s jump in.
They’re still the best two teams in the sport. Gonzaga predictably crushed Virginia, and Baylor has only won one game by less than 30 points so for even if it has been against a relatively weak schedule.
The Jayhawks playing well after an early season loss to a top 10 team? Where have I heard that before. There is a gap between KU and the top two teams, but the Jayhawks are playing like a top five team who could contend with Baylor and Gonzaga down the road.
Rounding out our top five are Villanova and Houston. Villanova looks like the cream of the crop in the Big East as always, even if Creighton looks really solid as well. Houston on the other hand hasn’t played a tough schedule yet (Texas Tech and UCF are their best wins). We think they’re good, but we’re not sure how good.
8. Michigan State
We have three Big Ten teams next. Iowa just came off losses to Minnesota and Gonzaga, but they only drop two spots because we like them a lot on the whole still and a loss to Gonzaga means very little because the Bulldogs are special. Wisconsin just beat Michigan State so we move the Badgers one spot ahead of the Spartans. Iowa feels like the most talented team in the Big Ten, with Wisconsin being the most consistent, and Michigan State being the most volatile.
11. West Virginia
Creighton got a tough win against a ranked Xavier team which bumps them up two spots over Texas. The Blue Jays look to be hitting their stride. The Longhorns narrowly defeated Oklahoma State last week so we kept them at 10. They’ll have a big test against Kansas coming up next. A test West Virginia just failed by 14 points and 16 threes which is why they fall to 11.
13. Texas Tech
The Tigers barely escaped Bradley by a score of 54-53 one week after they entered our rankings. They drop one spot, but remain ranked for now.
The Fighting Illini find their way back in the top 15. KenPom likes them a lot and we do like their talent despite three losses. Those three losses aren’t bad by any means though, all coming against ranked teams on the road. Illinois has a ton of upside and could still find themselves a consistent participant in these rankings.
Biggest Faller: West Virginia. The Mountaineers fall five spots. Obviously a loss in Allen Fieldhouse is nothing to be ashamed of, but it wasn’t pretty in the second half. We have more questions about WVU than answers.
Team to Watch: Northwestern. Normally this blurb is about an interesting mid-major, but we wanted to highlight the Wildcats this week. They are 6-1 overall and 3-0 in Big Ten play so far with wins over Michigan State and a ranked Ohio State. They are currently in a stretch of playing eight ranked teams in ten games, so we will find out a lot more about Northwestern soon.