Top 25 Rankings for Week of March 11


It was another wild week in college basketball. Here are my updated Top 25 rankings:

1. Gonzaga (30-2, 16-0 WCC)

Gonzaga ended Loyola Marymount’s Cinderella run on Saturday with a win in the WCC semifinals. The Zags will face St. Mary’s on Monday night in the WCC title game.

 

2. Louisville (26-5, 14-4 Big East)

Louisville finished the regular season on a seven-game winning streak to earn a share of the Big East title and the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament. After a rough January, the Cardinals are once again looking like a national title contender.

 

3. Duke (27-4, 14-4 ACC)

After knocking off Miami and Virginia Tech upon Ryan Kelly’s return to the lineup, Duke then went on the road and dominated North Carolina to end the regular season. There is no question that the Blue Devils are a title contender as long as Kelly remains healthy.

 

4. Indiana (26-5, 14-4 Big Ten)

The Hoosiers came from behind at Michigan in the final minute to capture its first Big Ten title outright since 1993. It was their third road win of the season against a team ranked in the AP Top 10.

 

5. Georgetown (24-5, 14-4 Big East)

The Hoyas swept Syracuse in their final series as Big East rivals. They did pick up a bad loss at Villanova on Wednesday, but lots of good teams have gone to Villanova and lost this season.

 

6. Kansas (26-5, 14-4 Big 12)

Kansas was blown out by Baylor in its final game of the season but still is the No. 1 seed in the Big 12 tournament. Similarly to Georgetown, this loss was not as bad as it seems. The Jayhawks had already clinched the No. 1 seed before the game began, and Baylor was absolutely desperate for a marquee win on Senior Night.

 

7. Ohio State (23-7, 13-5 Big Ten)

The Buckeyes ended the regular season with a five-game winning streak, including wins over Michigan State, Indiana and Illinois. This team seems to hitting its stride at the right time.

 

8. Michigan (25-6, 12-6 Big Ten)

Michigan blew a chance at a share of the Big Ten title as it allowed Indiana to storm back and win in the final seconds on Sunday. The Wolverines failed to hit the free throws down the stretch, but the referees did also fail to call an obvious flagrant I foul on Indiana’s Christian Watford on one of the final possessions.

 

9. Kansas State (25-6, 14-4 Big 12)

Kansas State had a shot at winning the Big 12 title outright, but a loss to Oklahoma State in the final regular season game kept the Wildcats in a tie with Kansas. It is still their first Big 12 title in 36 years.

 

10. Saint Louis (24-6, 13-3 A10)

Xavier snapped Saint Louis’ 11-game winning streak in overtime, but the Billikens rebounded with a win over La Salle to win the Atlantic 10 title outright. In my opinion, Jim Crews is right there with Jim Larranaga, John Thompson III and Buzz Williams, Mark Few and Bruce Weber for National Coach of the Year. He might even be the frontrunner.

 

11. Michigan State (24-7, 13-5 Big Ten)

The Spartans ended their regular season on a high note with wins over Wisconsin and Northwestern. They will be the No. 3 seed in the Big Ten tournament.

 

12. Miami-FL (24-6, 15-3 ACC)

After suffering its worst loss of the season to Georgia Tech, the Hurricanes responded with a 62-49 win over Clemson to secure their first-ever ACC title outright. They will face either Boston College or Georgia Tech in the ACC quarterfinals.

 

13. Marquette (23-7, 14-4 Big East)

After blowing a lead late in regulation against St. John’s, Marquette rallied in overtime to win on a buzzer beater at Madison Square Garden. The Golden Eagles will be back at the Garden this week as the No. 3 seed in the Big East tournament.

 

14. Oklahoma State (23-7, 13-5 Big 12)

The Cowboys knocked off Kansas State on Saturday for its fourth win in its last five games. They will face Baylor on Thursday in the Big 12 quarterfinals.

 

15. New Mexico (26-5, 13-3 MWC)

New Mexico’s chances for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament took a big hit with an 89-88 loss at Air Force. The Lobos now need to win the Mountain West tournament to have a realistic chance at earning a No. 1 seed in the South Region.

 

16. Florida (24-6, 14-4 SEC)

Florida’s road struggles continued as the Gators lost at Kentucky to end the regular season. In their last five SEC road games, they are 1-4 with the only win coming against last-place Auburn.

 

17. Pittsburgh (24-7, 12-6 Big East)

The Panthers finished the regular season with four straight wins to earn the No. 4 seed in the Big East tournament. They are still struggling to score, but their defense has been stellar.

 

18. UCLA (23-8, 13-5 Pac12)

Despite all the criticism Ben Howland has received this season, his UCLA Bruins still won the Pac-12 title outright. The Bruins are the hottest team in the conference entering the Pac-12 tournament with wins in five of their last six games.

 

19. Arizona (24-6, 12-6 Pac12)

Arizona ended its two-game losing streak with a win over Arizona State this past weekend.

 

20. Wisconsin (21-10, 12-6 Big Ten)

The Badgers hit a late-season slide with losses to Purdue and Michigan State, but they came back with a win at Penn State on Sunday. Still, they needed a buzzer-beater three-pointer from Traevon Jackson in their victory over the last-place Nittany Lions.

 

21. St. Mary’s (27-5, 14-2 WCC)

St. Mary’s survived San Diego’s upset bid in overtime in the WCC semifinals, and it will face Gonzaga in the WCC finals on Monday night. The Gaels’ chances for an at-large bid are very good at this point, but they won’t have to sweat at all on Selection Sunday if they earn the conference’s automatic bid.

 

22. Creighton (27-7, 13-5 MVC)

The Bluejays knocked off Drake, Indiana State and Wichita State to the win MVC tournament and earn an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. Against Wichita State, they proved they can win even without Doug McDermott’s scoring. McDermott recorded only 14 points on 5-of-13 shooting.

 

23. VCU (24-7, 12-4 A10)

VCU failed to capture a share of the Atlantic 10 title with a loss at Temple on Sunday afternoon.

 

24. Syracuse (23-8, 11-7 Big East)

The Orange have really been struggling recently. They have lost four of their last five and are 5-7 in their last 12 games. They went from conference title contender to the No. 5 seed in the Big East tournament over the last few weeks.

 

25. Butler (24-7, 11-5 A10)

The Bulldogs survived upset bids from Massachusetts and Xavier in their final two games of the season to stay in my Top 25. They will face Dayton in the first round of the Atlantic 10 tournament on Thursday.

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