Heading into the final week of the season we still do not have a clear cut favorite to win the National Championship. That, my friends, is exciting news! This past week continued to be just like the many weeks before. There were more Top 25 losses, more new additions, and more shocking developments. This week’s “biggest loser” award goes to the Michigan Wolverines. Apparently, they thought because Penn State had not won in the Big Ten yet, that this would be a cakewalk! Well, after blowing a huge lead, they left Happy Valley losers and the Nittany Lions celebrated their first conference win. If a season like this has not heightened your love for college basketball, nothing will. Well, enough of me of me celebrating a Michigan loss……..lets’ dive in shall we?
Here’s a look at the Top 25 Week Ahead and Week in Review:
1. Indiana (25-4, 13-3) Previous Rank: 1
Past Week: 2/26 @ Minnesota, L 73-77 & 3/2 Iowa, W 73-60
Upcoming: 3/5 (16) Ohio State
Apparently Indiana thought a couple of weeks at Number One were long enough so they decided to lose on the road to Minnesota. This week they will host Ohio State in a late season battle.
2. Gonzaga (29-2, 16-0) Previous Rank: 3
Past Week: 2/28 @ BYU, W 70-65 & 3/2 Portland, W 81-52
Upcoming: Regular Season is complete
As much as I think the voters hate this, I don’t think they have a choice at putting Gonzaga number one after this week’s shenanigans. The Bulldogs finished their regular season with two more wins and will now wait for their conference tournament.
3. Duke (25-4, 12-4) Previous Rank: 6
Past Week: 2/24 Boston College, W 89-68 & 2/28 @ Virginia, L 68-73 & 3/2 (5) Miami (FL),W 79-76
Upcoming: 3/9 Virginia Tech
The Blue Devils most likely lost their shot at the top spot this week by losing to Virginia. A strong win against Miami (FL) helped them rebound though. They host the Hokies in their final regular season game.
4. Michigan (23-5, 10-5) Previous Rank: 7
Past Week: 2/24 Illinois, W 71-58 & 2/27 @ Penn State, L 78-84
Upcoming: 3/3 (9) Michigan State & 3/6 @ Purdue
Someone forgot to tell Michigan that just because you are up by 15+ points the game isn’t over. A huge comeback by Penn State shocked the Wolverines. Michigan is now 3-4 in their last 7 games. They don’t have time to think about that though as Michigan State comes to town.
5. Miami (FL) (23-5, 14-2) Previous Rank: 2
Past Week: 2/27 Virginia Tech, W 76-58 & 3/2 @ (3) Duke, L 76-79
Upcoming: 3/6 Georgia Tech & 3/9 Clemson
After embarrassing Duke in the first game, the Hurricanes fell to them in the rematch. Two home games to close out the regular season before the ACC tournament starts.
6. Kansas (25-4, 13-3) Previous Rank: 9
Past Week: 2/25 @ Iowa State, W 108-96 & 3/2 West Virginia, W 91-65
Upcoming: 3/4 Texas Tech & 3/9 @ Baylor
Kansas continues to improve late in the season. The final two games are winnable games before the Big 12 tournament starts.
7. Georgetown (23-4, 13-3) Previous Rank: 11
Past Week: 2/27 @ UConn, W 79-78 & 3/2 Rutgers, W 64-51
Upcoming: 3/6 @ Villanova & 3/9 (12) Syracuse
The Hoyas squeaked by a tough Uconn team on the road and will now finish the regular season against Syracuse.
8. Florida (23-5, 13-3) Previous Rank: 5
Past Week: 2/26 @ Tennessee, L 58-64 & 3/2 Alabama, W 64-52
Upcoming: 3/6 Vanderbilt & 3/9 @ Kentucky
Florida continues to be up and down in the SEC down the stretch. A tough road loss at Tennessee is not what the Gators were hoping for as they look towards the tournament.
9. Michigan State (22-6, 11-4) Previous Rank: 4
Past Week: 2/24 @ (16) Ohio State, L 60-68
Upcoming: 3/3 @ (4) Michigan & 3/7 (17) Wisconsin
The Spartans couldn’t bring back a win after facing the Buckeyes in Columbus last week. Two more tough games against ranked opponents should prepare Michigan State nicely for the tournament run.
10. Louisville (24-5, 12-4) Previous Rank: 10
Past Week: 2/27 @ DePaul, W 79-58 & 3/2 @ (12) Syracuse, W 58-53
Upcoming: 3/4 Cincinnati & 3/9 (21) Notre Dame
Louisville seems to be back to normal in winning in the Big East. The will close out the conference schedule at home against Cincy and Notre Dame this week.
11. Arizona (23-6, 11-6) Previous Rank: 12
Past Week: 2/27 @ USC, L 78-89 & @ UCLA, L 69-74
Upcoming: 3/9 Arizona State
The Wildcats seemed to right the ship only to lose back to back games last week. A bit of break gives Arizona time to prepare for rival Arizona State.
12. Syracuse (22-7, 10-6) Previous Rank: 8
Past week: 2/25 @ (22) Marquette, L 71-74 & 3/2 (10) Louisville, L 53-58
Upcoming: 3/6 DePaul & 3/9 (7) Georgetown
Syracuse has lost three in row (I can’t lie, I’m a little happy about this) and will fall even farther in the rankings. Georgetown comes to town and could add to their misery!
13. Kansas State (24-5, 13-3) Previous Rank: 13
Past Week: 2/25 Texas Tech, W 75-55 & 3/2 @ Baylor, W 64-61
Upcoming: 3/5 TCU & 3/9 @ (15) Oklahoma State
Kansas State picked up a good road win at Baylor but this week’s road trip is even tougher as they travel to Oklahoma State.
14. New Mexico (25-4, 12-2) Previous Rank: 16
Past Week: 2/27 San Diego State, W 70-60 & 3/2 Wyoming, W 53-42
Upcoming: 3/6 @ Nevada & 3/9 @ Air Force
Two more games last week and two more wins for New Mexico. I look for more of the same this week.
15. Oklahoma State (22-6, 12-4) Previous Rank: 14
Past Week: 2/27 @ TCU 64-47 & 3/2 Texas, W 78-65
Upcoming: 3/6 @ Iowa State & 3/9 (13) Kansas State
The Cowboys continue to impress me. Two wins this week could impress me even more!
16. Ohio State (21-7, 11-5) Previous Rank: 18
Past Week: 2/24 (9) Michigan State, W 68-60 & 2/28 @ Northwestern, W 63-53
Upcoming: 3/5 @ (1) Indiana
The Buckeyes looked very good in their win against Michigan State and they are finally getting some scoring from the supporting cast. They will need more of the same if they hope to escape Bloomington with a win!
17. Wisconsin (20-8, 11-4) Previous Rank: 19
Past Week: 2/26 Nebraska, W 77-46
Upcoming: 3/3 Purdue & 3/7 @ (9) Michigan State
Wisconsin didn’t have much to worry about last week when they faced Nebraska. This week, however, will be much different as they travel to East Lansing for a date with Michigan State.
18. Saint Louis (23-5, 12-2) Previous Rank: NR
Past Week: 2/27 St. Joseph’s, W 70-53 & 3/2 George Washington, W 66-58
Upcoming: 3/6 @ Xavier & 3/9 LaSalle
Saint Louis jumps into the Top 25 for the first time thanks to an 11 game win streak. They look to make it 13 after this week.
19. Memphis (25-4, 14-0) Previous Rank: 21
Past Week: 2/26 @ Xavier, L 62-64 & 3/2 @ UCF 76-67
Upcoming: 3/5 @ UTEP & 3/9 UAB
Memphis stepped out of conference last week but lost on the road to Xavier. Two conference games this week should spell out an undefeated conference schedule!
20. Butler (22-7, 9-5) Previous Rank: 15
Past Week: 3/2 @ VCU, L 52-84
Upcoming: 3/7 @ Umass & 3/9 Xavier
Butler is struggling down the home stretch. Their loss to VCU is their second in a row and it doesn’t get any easier when they host Xavier this week.
21. Notre Dame (22-7, 10-6) Previous Rank: 25
Past Week: 2/24 Cincinnati, W 62-41 & 3/2 (22) Marquette, L 64-72
Upcoming: 3/5 St. John’s & 3/9 @ (10) Louisville
The Irish lost to Marquette last week but it isn’t anything to be ashamed of as Marquette is coming on strong late in the season. They look to travel to Louisville in hopes of a another win against the Cardinals (just not in 5 OT’s!).
22. Marquette (21-7, 12-4) Previous Rank: 17
Past Week: 2/25 (12) Syracuse, W 74-71 & 3/2 (21) Notre Dame, W 72-64
Upcoming: 3/5 @ Rutgers & 3/9 @ St. John’s
Two big wins against ranked opponents should boost Marquette in the polls this week. They should finish out the Big East schedule with two more wins.
23. Pittsburgh (22-7, 10-6) Previous Rank: 20
Past Week: 2/24 @ St. John’s, W 63-47 & 2/27 South Florida, 64-44
Upcoming: 3/3 Villanova & 3/9 @ DePaul
Pittsburgh didn’t face much of a challenge last week and this week should be about the same.
24. Oregon (23-6, 12-4) Previous Rank: 23
Past Week: 2/28 Oregon State, W 85-75
Upcoming: 3/7 @ Colorado & 3/9 @ Utah
Oregon knocked off their rival Oregon State last week and they have two winnable games to finish out PAC-12 play.
25. Louisiana Tech (26-3, 16-0) Previous Rank: NR
Past Week: 2/28 Utah State, W 84-61 & 3/2 San Jose State, W 88-61
Upcoming: 3/7 @ New Mexico State & 3/9 @ Denver
A huge 18 game winning streak has put Louisiana Tech in the Top 25. 20 wins in a row and this team should get a decent seed in the Big Dance.
Be sure to check back next week to see how this exciting regular season ends and to preview the conference tournaments!