Note: The changes are from my pre-weekend top 25 on Friday, not my top 25 from back on last Monday
#1 – Virginia (23-2) — No Change
Even after losing to the rival Hokies on Saturday, the ‘Cavs still have the nation’s best resume, including seven KenPom “A-Level” wins.
#2 – Villanova (23-2) — No Change
Nova’s resume features seven KenPom “A-Level” wins, including Xavier and Gonzaga. The ‘Cats will take on Providence and Xavier this week.
#3 – Cincinnati (23-2) — Up 1
Cincy stands at #3 in KenPom, after picking up an “A Level victory by way of a road win over SMU. The Bearcats are winners of 16 in a row heading into a matchup with Houston on Thursday.
#4 – Purdue (23-4) — Down 1
Purdue’s resume features six KenPom “A-Level” wins, and the Boilermakers dropped just a spot to #4 in the metric despite losing to Michigan State on Saturday, and I will do the same here.
#5 – Michigan State (24-3) — No Change
Michigan State’s resume features only four KenPom “A-Level” wins, but the Spartans escaped with a home win over Purdue, keeping the Spartans in the top five. You might ask, why are they ranked behind the team they beat on Saturday? Here is why. Firstly, the season is more than one game, and Purdue’s resume is much stronger. Secondly, the game was decided on a buzzer beater, @ Michigan State, and statistics tell you that a three-point home win is about equal to a five-point road loss. KenPom’s home court advantage metric says that Michigan State has performed 3.8 points better than expected at home this year, meaning the Spartans would lose to Purdue on a neutral. Thirdly, Michigan State is ranked behind Purdue in KenPom, Sagarin, KPI, BPI, RPI, Predictive RPI, Haslametrics, and pretty much any computer ranking you can find.
#6 – Texas Tech (21-4) — Up 3
Texas Tech sits alone atop the Big 12 standings. The Red Raiders will take on Baylor and Oklahoma this week.
#7 – Xavier (23-3) — Down 1
Xavier drops a spot due to the Red Raiders jumping up, no fault of their own. The Musketeers are the luckiest team in a power conference according to KenPom’s metric.
#8 – Duke (20-5) — Down 1
Duke has lost three of five, and they will take on two KenPom top-40 teams this week with Virginia Tech and Clemson on the docket.
#9 – Auburn (22-3) — Up 1
Auburn is the highest ranked team in the SEC after Tennessee’s loss, and the Tigers are two games clear in the SEC standings.
#10 – Gonzaga (23-4) — Up 5
Gonzaga beat Saint Mary’s on the road this week, and the Bulldogs are undoubtedly the most talented team on the West Coast.
#11 – Ohio State (22-5) — Up 2
Ohio State’s head to head loss on a neutral court to Gonzaga keeps the Buckeyes from climbing into the top ten, but the Buckeyes sit alone atop the Big Ten standings.
#12 – North Carolina (19-7) — Up 5
UNC has faced the nation’s second-toughest schedule, and wins over Duke and NC State this week bolt them into the top 15.
#13 – Tennessee (18-6) — Down 5
Tennessee’s loss to Alabama drops them out of the top ten, but the Vols still own three wins over top-35 teams, two of which were on the road.
#14 – Kansas (19-6) — Down 3
Kansas’ loss to Baylor knocked the Jayhawks out of the top of the Big 12 standings.
#15 – Clemson (20-4) — Up 3
Clemson keeps proving people wrong after Grantham’s injury, but the Tigers will face Florida State and Duke this week.
#16 – West Virginia (18-7) — Down 2
I realize I’m higher on West Virginia than most, but the Mountaineers are one of two teams to defeat #1 Virginia.
#17 – Wichita State (19-5) — Up 2
Wichita State owns three KenPom “A Level” wins, but two losses to sub-60 KenPom mean that the Shockers won’t be able to climb higher than this without a win over Cincinnati.
#18 – Butler (17-9) — Down 2
Butler came one shot away from beating Xavier on Thursday, but it wasn’t to be. The Bulldogs have two more top-35 games on their schedule.
#19 – Texas A&M (17-8) — Up 3
Texas A&M had climbed up to near the top of my rankings back in November, but after the start of conference play, the Aggies lost seven of nine. Since then, A&M has won four straight games, three of which against top 50 teams, including a victory over Auburn.
#20 – Saint Mary’s (24-3) — Down 8
Last week I had Saint Mary’s pegged as a sleeper final four team, now they hang at the bottom of my top 25 due to a blowout home loss to Gonzaga.
#21 – Alabama (16-9) — NEW
‘Bama owns five KenPom “A-Level” wins, more than my #5 team! So I decided to put them back into the top 25.
#22 – Michigan (20-7) — NEW
I’m not as confident in Michigan as some of the other teams in my top 25, but their win over Michigan State earns them a ranking.
#23 – TCU (17-8) — NEW
The win over Texas puts the Horned Frogs back into the Top 25 for the first time in a couple weeks.
#24 – Louisville (18-8) — NEW
Louisville beat two sub-100 KenPom teams this week, but pretty much everybody ahead of them lost, so the ‘Cards move into the top 25.
#25 – Rhode Island (20-3) — No Change
All three of Rhody’s losses are to teams either in my top 25 or the KenPom top 25, but they only own one KenPom “A Level” win, vs Seton Hall. They’ll get two more opportunities this year: @ St. Bonaventure, and @ Davidson.
Dropped Out: #20 Florida State, #21 Miami, #23 Oklahoma, #24 Kentucky
Others Considered: Baylor, that’s it. The Bears are my #26 team.