Maybe the Pac-10 won't be going stag to the NCAA Tournament after all.
The Pac-10 has looked like a one-bid conference for most of the season, something unheard of in an era when the six BCS conferences rule the worlds of college basketball and football. However, with seemingly every team in a down cycle this season, it certainly looked like the Pac-10 would take the road of so many mid-major conferences.
However, The List sees hope for the Pac-10 this week as we now project the conference to get two teams in the field of 65, California and Washington. That's not many but two is certainly better than one.
Meanwhile, Kansas remains atop The List after surviving with a 59-54 victory at Texas A&M on Monday night. The Aggies are one of two teams to enter The List this week along with Xavier. Following the Jayhawks are Duke, Syracuse, Kentucky and West Virginia.
Ohio State is the biggest gainer, moving up five spots from No. 19 to No. 14 following convincing victories over Indiana and Illinois. Tennessee takes the biggest tumble, falling from No. 14 to out of the top 25 following losses to Vanderbilt and Kentucky.
Keep in mind that The List differs from The Associated Press media poll. We are ranking teams on the basis of how strongly we believe their chances are of winning the national championship than strictly on record.
As always, we lean on the objective data, taking into account Ken Pomeroy’s Pomeroy Ratings at kenpom.com, the Jeff Sagarin ratings for USA Today at usatoday.com, RealTimeRPI at realtimerpi.com, Team Rankings at teamrankings.com and Kyle Whelliston’s State of Basketball rankings at basketballstate.com.
Last week’s ranking: 1
Last week: Defeated No. 13 Texas 80-68 and Iowa State 73-59
This week: Defeated No. 25 Texas A&M 59-54 on Monday night, Colorado on Saturday
Information: Forward Marcus Morris has scored at least 11 points in each of Kansas' 11 Big 12 games.
Last week’s ranking: 3
Last week: Defeated North Carolina 64-54 and No. 24 Maryland 77-56
This week: at Miami (Fla.) on Wednesday, Virginia Tech on Sunday
Information: Guard Jon Scheyer leads the ACC in games with 13 games of 20 or more points.
Last week’s ranking: 2
Last week: Defeated Connecticut 72-67, lost to Louisville 66-60
This week: at No. 11 Georgetown on Thursday
Information: Guard Brandon Triche was held scoreless for the first time in his freshman season by Louisville as he missed all four field goal attempts.
Last week’s ranking: 6
Last week: Defeated Alabama 66-55 and No. 14 Tennessee 73-62
This week: at Mississippi State tonight, at No. 20 Vanderbilt on Saturday
Information:Forward DeMarcus Cousins' streak of seven consecutive double-doubles ended against Tennessee when he had 12 rebounds but only five points.
Last week’s ranking: 5
Last week: Lost to No. 4 Villanova 82-75 and Pittsburgh 98-95
This week: at Providence on Wednesday, Seton Hall on Saturday
Information:Forward Wellington Smith is shooting 60 percent in his last seven games.
Last week’s ranking: 8
Last week: Defeated No.12 Michigan State 76-64 and Iowa 63-40
This week: at No. 14 Ohio State on Wednesday, Illinois on Saturday
Information:Guard E'Twuan Moore is averaging 20.7 points in six Big Ten road games.
Last week’s ranking: 4
Last week: Defeated No. 5 West Virginia 82-75 and Providence 92-81
This week: Lost to Connecticut 84-75 on Monday night, at Pittsburgh on Sunday
Information: Forward Corey Stokes is 2-for-11 on three-pointers in the last three games.
Last week’s ranking: 7
Last week: Defeated Colorado 68-51
This week: Nebraska on Wednesday, at Oklahoma on Saturday
Information: Guard Denis Clemente was held to 10 points by Baylor's zone defense after he combined for 53 points in the previous two games.
Last week’s ranking: 10
Last week: Defeated Air Force 91-48
This week: at Colorado State on Wednesday, at Wyoming on Saturday
Information: Guard Jackson Emery's 66 steals tie the Brigham Young single-season record.
Last week’s ranking: 9
Last week: Lost Illinois 63-56, defeated Indiana 83-55
This week: at Minnesota on Thursday, Northwestern on Sunday
Information:Guard Jason Bohannon scored a career-high 30 points, topping his previous best by 10.
Last week’s ranking: 11
Last week: Defeated Providence 79-70, lost to Rutgers 71-68
This week: No. 3 Syracuse on Thursday
Information: Forward Austin Freeman has scored in double figures in 18 consecutive games.
Last week’s ranking: 15
Last week: Defeated UNLV 76-66 and Utah 68-65
This week: Wyoming on Wednesday, Air Force on Saturday
Information: Guard Phillip McDonald is shooting 49 percent from three-point range in Mountain West Conference games.
Last week’s ranking: 13
Last week:Lost to No. 1 Kansas 80-68, defeated Nebraska 91-51
This week: at No. 22 Missouri on Wednesday, at Texas Tech on Saturday
Information: Guard J'Covan Brown leads the Big 12 with a .913 free throw percentage.
Last week’s ranking: 19
Last week: Defeated Indiana 69-52 and Illinois 72-53
This week: No. 6 Purdue on Wednesday, at No. 19 Michigan State on Sunday
Information:Guard Jon Diebler has 221 three-pointers in his career and is 21 away from Jamar Butler's school record.
Last week’s ranking: 18
Last week: Defeated Saint Mary's 80-61 and San Diego 82-65
This week: at Loyola Marymount on Thursday, at Pepperdine on Saturday
Information:Guard Matt Bouldin has played a full 40 minutes or more in nine games this season.
Last week’s ranking: 16
Last week: Defeated Nebraska 55-53 and No. 22 Missouri 64-62
This week: Texas Tech tonight, at Oklahoma State on Saturday
Information: Guard LaceDarius Dunn has been perfect on free throws in nine of the last 13 games.
Last week’s ranking: 21
Last week: Defeated Boston College 92-85 and Georgia Tech 75-64
This week: at Virginia Tech tonight, at North Carolina State on Saturday
Information: Forward Tony Woods scored 10 points in 15 minutes against Georgia Tech, just his second double-figure scoring game of the season, after being ejected from the Boston College game.
Last week’s ranking: 20
Last week: Defeated Loyola (Ill.) 62-47, Youngstown State 68-57 and Cleveland State 70-59
This week: Illinois-Chicago on Wednesday, Siena on Saturday
Information: Forward Gordon Heyward is the only player to rank in the top five in the Horizon League in both scoring (16.0) and rebounding (8.3).
Last week’s ranking: 12
Last week: Lost to No. 8 Purdue 76-64, defeated Penn State 65-54
This week: at Indiana tonight, No. 14 Ohio State on Sunday
Information: Guard Chris Allen has scored a combined 50 points in his last three games after scoring a combined six points in the previous three games.
Last week’s ranking: 23
Last week: Defeated No. 14 Vanderbilt 90-71 and LSU 77-69
This week: at Mississippi on Thursday, No. 4 Kentucky on Saturday
Information:Forward Steve Tchiengang has only one steal this season after having 16 last season.
Last week’s ranking: 25
Last week: Defeated Rhode Island 78-56
This week: at St. Bonaventure on Wednesday, at St. Joseph's on Saturday
Information: Center Michael Eric scored a career-high 19 points against Rhode Island.
Last week’s ranking: 22
Last week: Defeated Iowa State 65-56, lost to No. 16 Baylor 64-62
This week: No. 11 Texas on Wednesday, at Nebraska on Saturday
Information: Guard J.T. Tiller, despite playing with a broken nose, scored a season-high 17 points against Iowa State.
Last week’s ranking: NR
Last week: Defeated Florida 76-64
This week: St. Joseph's on Wednesday, at Charlotte on Saturday
Information:Center Jason Love had 20 points and 10 rebounds against Florida for his sixth double-double of the season.
Last week’s ranking: 17
Last week: Defeated Drake 57-48, lost to Bradley 68-59
This week: Creighton tonight, Old Dominion Friday
Information: Forward Adam Koch has made 23 straight free throws.
Last week’s ranking: NR
Last week: Defeated Texas Tech 67-65
This week: Lost to No. 1 Kansas 59-54 on Monday night, at Iowa State on Monday
Information: Center Bryan Davis had 13 points and 16 rebounds against Texas Tech for his second double-double of the season then had four points and 11 rebounds against Kansas.
Dropped out: No. 14 Tennessee, No. 24 Maryland
Others to watch: California (17-8), Clemson (18-7), Marquette (16-8), Maryland (16-7), Pittsburgh (19-6)
Most overrated: Michigan State keeps getting love from the poll voters despite the recent losses and there is no way the Spartans should be ranked No. 11 in the AP poll.
Most underrated: Missouri is again appreciated more by the metrics than the voters as the Tigers did not receive a vote in the AP poll this week.
The Field of 65
ACC (7): Clemson, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest
America East (1): Vermont
Atlantic 10 (6): Charlotte, Dayton, Rhode Island, Richmond, Temple, Xavier
Atlantic Sun (1): Belmont
Big 12 (7): Baylor, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Oklahoma State, Texas, Texas A&M
Big East (7): Georgetown, Louisville, Marquette, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Villanova, West Virginia
Big Sky (1): Weber State
Big South (1): Coastal Carolina
Big Ten (4): Michigan State, Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin
Big West (1): Pacific
Colonial (1): Old Dominion
Conference USA (2): UAB, UTEP
Horizon (1): Butler
Ivy (1): Cornell
Metro Atlantic (1): Siena
Mid-American (1): Kent State
Mid-Eastern (1): Morgan State
Missouri Valley (1): Northern Iowa
Mountain West (3): Brigham Young, New Mexico, UNLV
Northeast (1): Quinnipiac
Ohio Valley (1): Murray State
Pac-10 (2): California, Washington
Patriot (1): Lehigh
SEC (4): Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee, Vanderbilt
Southern (1): Wofford
Southland (1): Sam Houston State
Summit (1): Oakland
Sun Belt (1): Western Kentucky
SWAC (1): Texas Southern
WAC (1): Utah State
West Coast (2): Gonzaga, Saint Mary's
New to the dance: Oklahoma State, Washington, Weber State
Tossed off the floor: Florida, Montana, Virginia Commonwealth
The bubble team: Mississippi State
Hello NIT: Akron, Arizona State, Charleston, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Jackson State, Louisiana Tech, Marshall, Middle Tennessee State, Memphis, Minnesota, Mississippi State, Nevada, New Mexico State, Northeastern, Northwestern, Robert Morris, St. John's, San Diego State, Seton Hall, South Carolina, South Florida, Stony Brook, Texas Tech, Tulsa, UC-Santa Barbara, Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth, Wichita State, William & Mary
John Perrotto is an author of Basketball Prospectus.
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