College Basketball Top 25's: Pittsburgh #1

    
February 23rd, 2009

The Story: Last week’s top three teams all suffered losses which enabled Pittsburgh to grab this week’s No. 1 ranking in both polls. Pitt was one first-place vote shy of being the unanimous No. 1 team in the Coaches’ poll and had all but three first place votes in this week’s AP poll. This is the second time this year that Pitt has been ranked in the top spot. The Panthers defeated last week’s No. 1 team Connecticut last Monday. The Huskies fall only one spot to No. 2. Oklahoma, previously No. 2, falls to No. 3 after losing at Texas and North Carolina, previously No. 3, falls to No. 4/5 after losing an overtime battle with Maryland. Memphis has cracked the top 5 in both polls and is currently riding an 18 game win streak.  Syracuse falls from both polls this week. The Orange are currently tied for 8th in the Big East after losing a close game at home against Villanova. Utah State joins Syracuse as the other team dropping off the Coaches’ poll. Dayton was the only other team to fall from the AP poll. The Texas Longhorns, after a two week absence off the polls, are once again ranked after beating the aforementioned Sooners. Florida State was the only other team to join the rankings this week.

 

AP Top 25
1. Pittsburgh (69) 25-2 1,797
2. Connecticut (1) 25-2 1,692
3. Oklahoma (2) 25-2 1,643
4. North Carolina 24-3 1,556
5. Memphis 24-3 1,543
6. Louisville 21-5 1,403
7. Duke 22-5 1,228
8. Marquette 23-4 1,169
9. Michigan State 21-5 1,136
10. Villanova 22-5 1,125
11. Missouri 23-4 1,094
12. Clemson 22-4 1,050
13. Wake Forest 20-5 992
14. Arizona State 21-5 869
15. Kansas 22-5 812
16. Purdue 21-6 765
17. Gonzaga 21-5 661
18. LSU 23-4 541
19. Xavier 22-5 413
20. Illinois 22-6 364
21. Washington 20-7 291
22. UCLA 20-7 268
23. Florida State 21-6 217
24. Butler 23-4 192
25. Texas 18-8 162


Others Receiving Votes
Utah 108, West Virginia 96, Syracuse 53, Arizona 33, Dayton 21, Creighton 21, Utah State 16, Florida 14, California 11, Siena 9, South Carolina 8, Penn State 8, Saint Mary's 5, Davidson 3, Minnesota 3, Kansas State 3, Brigham Young 2, American University 1, Kentucky 1, Maryland 1.


Dropped From Rankings
Syracuse 24, Dayton 25.

ESPN/USA Today Poll
1. Pittsburgh (30) 25-2 774
2. Connecticut (1) 25-2 721
3. Oklahoma 25-2 691
4. Memphis 24-3 682
5. North Carolina 24-3 668
6. Louisville 21-5 585
7. Duke 22-5 559
8. Missouri 23-4 517
9. Michigan State 21-5 511
10. Marquette 23-4 471
11. Arizona State 21-5 434
12. Villanova 22-5 428
13. Clemson 22-4 424
14. Wake Forest 20-5 411
15. Kansas 22-5 355
16. Purdue 21-6 261
17. Gonzaga 21-5 257
18. LSU 23-4 239
19. UCLA 20-7 202
20. Illinois 22-6 197
21. Washington 20-7 178
22. Xavier 22-5 175
23. Butler 23-4 75
24. Texas 18-8 55
25. Florida State 21-6 52


Others Receiving Votes
Utah 22, Utah State 22, Dayton 21, Syracuse 18, Florida 16, Penn State 10, Arizona 9, California 7, West Virginia 7, Brigham Young 6, South Carolina 5, Saint Mary's 4, Boston College 3, Creighton 2, Kentucky 1.


Dropped From Rankings
Utah State 23, Syracuse 25.

 

Ryter’s Block: DeJuan Blair and Pittsburgh are deserving of this week’s top spot. Blair manhandled Thabeet and UConn. Blair played like a man possessed scoring 22 points and grabbing 23 boards against one of the best defensive big men in college hoops. The difference in height didn’t matter to Blair. He plays so well around the basket that he should be selling his own version of Better Basketball DVD’s for post guys, which will highlight the game against the Huskies. I don’t see how Pitt wasn’t the unanimous selection for No. 1 this week. I don’t have any other big problems with this week’s rankings. I would drop Illinois a few more spots after only scoring 33 points against Penn State. 33 points, really? It’s almost impossible to score 33 only points unless you are missing on purpose; even then you would think eventually some shots would fall. However, they did bounce back and beat Ohio State later in the week. My only other problem is that No. 16 Purdue and No. 18 LSU should switch spots. Although the SEC is having a down year, LSU is 11-1 in the conference and 23-4 overall.

 

Some games to watch this week that leading up to an exciting Saturday day of games…

 

Monday, February 23:                         No. 15 Kansas at No. 3 Oklahoma

 

Tuesday, February 24:                       Florida at No. 18 LSU

                                                            No. 25 Florida State at Boston College

 

Wednesday, February 25:                  No. 2 Connecticut at No. 10 Marquette

                                                            No. 7 Duke at Maryland

 

Thursday, February 26:                      No. 11 Arizona State at No. 21 Washington