Kansas is this week’s No. 1. This likely won’t last — no team has been able to hold onto the top ranking six weeks into the season.
And don’t expect that to change. The top 10 isn’t staying steady, either. The selection of the teams will be a challenge. The seeding will be impossible. Good luck to the selection committee.
The snapshot of rankings is at least a measurement of who is playing well in the previous week. Right now, that’s all we can bank on to determine a sense of order to this season.
1. Kansas (3): The Jayhawks will step up in schedule with a road game at Villanova.
2. Gonzaga (6): The Zags picked up their third top Pac-12 win away from Spokane by knocking off Arizona in Tucson.
3.Auburn (7): The Tigers continue to look like the top team in the SEC.
4. Oregon (13): The Ducks have played a brutal schedule exceptionally well. The win at Michigan will do wonders for their resume.
5. Ohio State (2): The Buckeyes suffered their first loss of the season at Minnesota Sunday night. They can climb back toward the top spot with a win over Kentucky in Las Vegas this Saturday.
6. Duke (8): The Blue Devils defense will be its staple this season and Vernon Carey is playing like a first-team all-American.
7. Baylor (10): The two Kansas-Baylor games this season will be must watch.
8. Louisville (1): The Cardinals lost to Texas Tech in New York, even though the Red Raiders were without their top scorer. Let’s see if this was an outlier performance by the Cards.
9. Dayton (9): Obi Toppin will stay in the conversation for first-team all-American honors all season.
10. Kentucky (11): The Wildcats have a huge week in Las Vegas against Utah and Ohio State.
11. Memphis (21): The. Tigers continue to show that not having James Wiseman is not going to be a problem for building a resume (see: road win at Tennessee).
12. Michigan State (14): The Spartans caught a break with the beginning of the Big Ten schedule with home game vs. Rutgers and at Northwestern. But the first games in January bring in Illinois and Michigan.
13. Maryland (4): The Terps were flirting with a loss last Saturday at home against Illinois. But then they had to go to Penn State and the inevitable happened. This squad will be just fine, but it proves how rugged the Big Ten will be this season.
14. Virginia (16): The Cavaliers will continue to struggle to score but the defense isn’t wilting (outside of against Purdue).
15.San Diego State (18): The 10-0 Aztecs will get another test against Utah before the Mountain West resumes in January.
16. Michigan (5): The Wolverines had a chance to knock off Oregon at home but couldn’t get the shot or the offensive put-back. This was a tough week for Michigan, but this team will be fine.
17. Butler (17): The Bulldogs aren’t going to get penalized for going to Baylor and losing late. This squad is the real deal.
18. Florida State (27): The Seminoles bounced back from the loss at Indiana by blowing out Clemson.
19. Marquette (28): The Golden Eagles won at Kansas State to show they can defend on the road.
20. Texas (26): The Longhorns have won five in a row since losing to Georgetown in New York to go to 9-1.
21. Villanova (22): The Wildcats are still searching for a major win. It could come Saturday against Kansas.
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22. Penn State (NR): The Nittany Lions proved they belong with the convincing home win over Maryland.
23. Washington (24): The Huskies will get better and better as the freshmen blossom into even tougher defenders and rim protectors.
24. West Virginia (25): The Mountaineers next monster game will be against Ohio State on Dec. 29.
25. NC State (32): The Wolfpack got a buzzer-beating shot by Markell Johnson to knock off UNC Greensboro. But it’s another road win for the Wolfpack to pad the resume.
26. Wichita State (33): The Shockers are quietly moving up in the American and might just end up being the top challenger to Memphis for the league title.
27. Arizona (12): The Wildcats drop after losing at home to Gonzaga. But this team will be in the mix for the top of the Pac-12 all season.
28. Illinois (NR): Patience. Everyone just had to be patient. The Illini finally broke through with a stellar performance at home against Michigan. The play of Kofi Cockburn was dominating at times. Expect the Illini to continue to surge.
29. Creighton (29): The Bluejays only losses so far this season were at Michigan and to San Diego State in Las Vegas. They torched rival Nebraska, who nearly beat Indiana and did take down Purdue.
30. DePaul (NR): The Blue Demons have one loss — at home to Buffalo. They deserve to be mentioned.
31. Iowa (NR): The Hawkeyes knocked off rival Iowa State and Luka Garza was our national player of the week with his impressive week.
32. Saint Mary’s (NR): The Gaels climb back into the poll after knocking off Cal. Jordan Ford is putting together an all-American season.
33. Texas Tech (NR): The Red Raiders leap back into the Power 36 with the upset of Louisville in Madison Square Garden. Remember the name Avery Benson. He’s the ultimate glue guy.
34. Arizona State (NR): The Sun Devils have won five in a row, including a thumping over Georgia at home. Saint Mary’s is next in Phoenix.
35. Liberty (36): Ritchie McKay has his Flames at 12-0, the last win came at the SEC’s Vanderbilt.
36.Duquesne (NR): Keith Dambrot hasn’t lost a game yet. Now, the Dukes haven’t played a rugged schedule, but being 9-0 is still worth recognizing.
Team of the Week
Texas Tech: The Red Raiders stunned then-No. 1 Louisville 70-57 without their top scorer, freshman Jahmi'us Ramsey (hamstring) who averages 17 points a game. The win redirected the Red Raiders season after three-straight losses in Las Vegas and Chicago. The win, led by Davide Moretti's 18, also unveiled a new star for Texas Tech — former walk-on Avery Benson. Benson's scrappy play was on display with 10 points, four boards in 22 minutes. Texas Tech desperately needed this win — as it was the last prior to the Big 12 against a possible quad 1 opponent. The Red Raiders will get one more possible non-conference quad 1 game against Kentucky on Jan. 25 in Lubbock.
Player of the week
Luka Garza, Iowa: Garza scored 21 points and grabbed 11 boards in the Hawkeyes rivalry win at Iowa State. Earlier in the week, Garza scored 21 and 10 in a home win over Minnesota. Garza had scored 44 in a loss at Michigan the previous week. He's averaging 22 points and nine boards after averaging 13 and four last season. His production is even more important now with the potential loss of Jordan Bohannon to a hip injury for the season. His play is also the reason why Iowa will stay in the mix for an NCAA tournament berth all season.