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College Basketball: Poll Thoughts

Some musings about today's college basketball polls.

Despite knocking off #1 Indiana this weekend, the Coaches poll has Butler at #25
Despite knocking off #1 Indiana this weekend, the Coaches poll has Butler at #25
Andy Lyons

First of all, I am not the least bit disappointed to see Duke ranked #1 in both polls today. The Blue Devils have legitimately earned that spot by going undefeated despite playing the 4th toughest schedule in the nation out-of-conference. They've had a few close calls, but almost always against a quality team. Kudos to them. Here are more of my thoughts:

  • I think the Florida Gators should be ranked higher. Their only loss was on the road to a top ten team, and I think they have proven that they are better than Indiana or Ohio St. Also, they have played a vastly tougher schedule than either one of the aforementioned worthies.
  • Arizona is over-ranked at #4. I understand how that happened -- they were over-ranked in the previous poll. The have exactly 1 top-50 win all season, and that would be against Florida by 1 at home, a game they deserved to lose.
  • You want a team that deserves to be in the poll more than Kentucky? VCU does. They have 3 top-50 wins, all their losses have been to top 35 teams, and yet they are nowhere to be found.
  • Kentucky honestly doesn't deserve to be in the poll despite my earlier comments, our resume doesn't justify it. But if you were going to pick the 25 teams most likely to win a given game, Kentucky would have to be one of them.
  • The coach's poll is equally crazy. Butler has 4 top 100 wins, 3 top 50 wins and 1 top 25, and the best they can get is #25 in the poll?
  • If you go by resume alone, should Ohio St. really be a top ten team? They have zero top 100 wins, let alone top 50. Cincinnati, for example, has 3 top-50 wins, one at neutral. Their schedule is weaker overall, but not by that much.
  • Illinois is not a top ten team. Their defense is barely worthy of the top 25, and their offense isn't much better. But they do have some quality wins that make them hard to ignore, like Gonzaga on the road. They barely eked by Eastern Kentucky, though, and I expect Missouri will take them down a peg.
  • I can't make my mind up about Gonzaga. They have a lot of top 100 wins, but only 1 top 50.The last three games of their non-conference season, including Baylor and at Oklahoma St. should do much to answer my questions.

What are your thoughts?