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February 2, 2010
The List
Big East Rising

by John Perrotto

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Kansas is No. 1 for the third consecutive week and the Jayhawks were an easy pick as they topped each of the five statistical ratings we consult in forming The List.

Three Big East teams help round out the top five as Syracuse is second and followed by Duke, West Virginia and Villanova. The biggest gainer is Vanderbilt, which moves up to No. 14 from No. 21. Wake Forest is the biggest faller, dropping off The List after being No. 17 last week.

As always, we lean on the objective data, taking into account Ken Pomeroy’s Pomeroy Ratings at kenpom.com, the Jeff Sagarin ratings for USA Today at usatoday.com, RealTimeRPI at realtimerpi.com, Team Rankings at teamrankings.com and Kyle Whelliston’s State of Basketball rankings at basketballstate.com.

1.Kansas
Record: 20-1
Last week’s ranking: 1
Last week: Defeated No. 22 Missouri 84-65 and No. 9 Kansas State 81-79.
This week: at Colorado on Wednesday, Nebraska on Saturday.
Information: The Jayhawks have shot at least 50 percent in 12 of their 21 games.

2.Syracuse
Record: 21-1
Last week’s ranking: 2
Last week: Defeated No. 12 Georgetown 73-56 and DePaul 59-57.
This week: Providence tonight, at Cincinnati on Sunday.
Information: The Orange are 5-0 on the road in the Big East, the first time they have won that many conference games away from home since 1999-2000.

3.Duke
Record: 17-4
Last week’s ranking: 3
Last week: Defeated Florida State 70-56, lost to No. 12 Georgetown 89-77.
This week: No. 23 Georgia Tech on Thursday, at Boston College on Saturday.
Information: Though senior guard Jon Scheyer leads the Blue Devils in scoring with an 18.7 average, he has been their top scorer only once in the last six games.

4.West Virginia
Record: 17-3
Last week’s ranking: 8
Last week: Defeated DePaul 62-46 and Louisville 77-74.
This week: No. 25 Pittsburgh on Wednesday, at St. John’s on Saturday.
Information: Seldom-used reserve guard Jonnie West, son of Mountaineers legend Jerry West, has gone 44 games and more than 100 minutes since his last turnover.

5.Villanova
Record: 19-1
Last week’s ranking: 6
Last week: Defeated Notre Dame 90-72.
This week: Seton Hall tonight, at No. 9 Georgetown on Saturday.
Information: Even with the victory over Notre Dame, the Wildcats are just 18-19 at the Wachovia Center.

6.Kentucky
Record: 20-1
Last week’s ranking: 4
Last week: Lost to South Carolina 68-62, defeated No. 21 Vanderbilt 85-72.
This week: Mississippi tonight, at LSU on Saturday.
Information: Center DeMarcus Cousins has four straight double-doubles and 12 this season, which is a Wildcats freshman record.

7.Brigham Young
Record: 21-2
Last week’s ranking: 5
Last week: Lost to New Mexico 76-72, defeated Utah 82-69.
This week: TCU tonight, at UNLV on Saturday.
Information: The Cougars are shooting 41.9 percent from three-point range, tops in the Mountain West Conference.

8.Texas
Record: 16-3
Last week’s ranking: 7
Last week: Defeated Texas Tech 95-83, lost to No. 20 Baylor 80-77.
This week: Defeated Oklahoma State 72-60 on Monday, at Oklahoma on Saturday.
Information: The Longhorns committed 18 turnovers that led to 27 points in the loss to Baylor.

9.Georgetown
Record: 16-4
Last week’s ranking: 12
Last week: Lost to No. 2 Syracuse 73-56, defeated No. 3 Duke 89-77.
This week: South Florida on Wednesday, at No. 5 Villanova on Saturday.
Information: The Hoyas had three players score at least 20 points in the same game for the first time in the John Thompson III era in the win over Duke as Chris Wright and Greg Monroe had 21 points and Austin Freeman had 20.

10.Purdue
Record: 18-3
Last week’s ranking: 10
Last week: Defeated No. 11 Wisconsin 60-57 and Penn State 66-46.
This week: at Indiana on Thursday.
Information: Junior forward Robbie Hummel is averaging 14.3 points and 8.3 rebounds during the Boilermakers’ four-game winning streak.

11.Kansas State
Record: 17-4
Last week’s ranking: 9
Last week: Defeated No. 20 Baylor 76-74, lost to No. 1 Kansas 81-79.
This week: at Nebraska tonight, at Iowa State on Saturday.
Information: The Wildcats are just 1-21 against Kansas at home in Bramlage Coliseum, otherwise known as “The Octagon of Doom.”

12.Michigan State
Record: 19-3
Last week’s ranking: 13
Last week: Defeated Michigan 57-56 and Northwestern 79-70.
This week: at No. 13 Wisconsin tonight, at Illinois on Saturday.
Information: The Spartans’ victory over Northwestern was Tom Izzo’s 355th and came on his 55th birthday.

13.Wisconsin
Record: 16-5
Last week’s ranking: 11
Last week: Lost to No. 10 Purdue 60-57.
This week: No. 12 Michigan State tonight, at Michigan on Saturday.
Information: Keaton Nankivil made seven three-point field goals in the loss to Purdue after having just nine in the Badgers’ first 20 games.

14.Vanderbilt
Record: 16-4
Last week’s ranking: 21
Last week: Defeated No. 14 Tennessee 85-76, lost to No. 4 Kentucky 85-72.
This week: Mississippi State on Wednesday, at Georgia on Saturday.
Information: The Commodores have had five players score in double figures in each of their last two games.

15.Temple
Record: 18-4
Last week’s ranking: 15
Last week: Lost to Charlotte 74-64, defeated La Salle 64-52.
This week: Duquesne on Wednesday, at Richmond on Saturday.
Information: Reserves Ramone Moore and Rahlir Jefferson combined for 23 points in the victory over La Salle.

16.Baylor
Record: 16-4
Last week’s ranking: 20
Last week: Lost to No. 9 Kansas State 76-74, defeated No. 7 Texas 80-77.
This week: Iowa State on Wednesday, at Texas A&M on Saturday.
Information: The Bears snapped an 11-game losing streak in Austin with its win over Texas.

17.Tennessee
Record: 16-4
Last week’s ranking: 14
Last week: Lost to No. 21 Vanderbilt 85-76, defeated Florida 61-60.
This week: at LSU on Thursday, South Carolina on Saturday.
Information: The Volunteers have won six straight games against Florida and are 8-1 against the Gators under Bruce Pearl.

18.Northern Iowa
Record: 19-2
Last week’s ranking: 19
Last week: Defeated Drake 67-51 and Missouri State 55-54.
This week: Wichita State on Wednesday, Southern Illinois on Saturday.
Information: The Panthers won the mythical state championship with their victory over Drake as they also beat Iowa and Iowa State in non-conference games.

19.Butler
Record: 18-4
Last week’s ranking: NR
Last week: Defeated Wisconsin-Green Bay 75-57 and Wisconsin-Milwaukee 73-66.
This week: Detroit on Thursday, Wright State on Saturday.
Information: The Bulldogs are 11-0 in the Horizon League for the first time.

20.New Mexico
Record: 20-3
Last week’s ranking: NR
Last week: Defeated No. 5 Brigham Young 76-72 and TCU 73-57.
This week: San Diego State on Saturday.
Information: The Lobos’ victory over Brigham Young made them 4-0 against ranked teams this season as their non-conference wins over California, Texas A&M and Texas Tech came when those teams were in The Associated Press Top 25.

21.Ohio State
Record: 16-6
Last week’s ranking: 24
Last week: Defeated Iowa 65-57 and Minnesota 85-63.
This week: Penn State on Wednesday, Iowa on Sunday.
Information: The Buckeyes are shooting 49.3 percent from the field, which ranks 11th in the nation.

22.Missouri
Record: 16-5
Last week’s ranking: 22
Last week: Lost to No. 1 Kansas 84-65, defeated Oklahoma State 95-80.
This week: Texas A&M on Wednesday, at Colorado on Saturday.
Information: The Tigers were outrebounded 56-28 by Kansas.

23.Georgia Tech
Record: 16-5
Last week’s ranking: NR
Last week: Defeated No. 18 Wake Forest 79-58 and Kentucky State 98-50.
This week: at No. 3 Duke on Thursday, North Carolina State on Saturday.
Information: The Yellow Jackets have nine players averaging at least 10 minutes a game.

24.Xavier
Record: 15-6
Last week’s ranking: NR
Last week: Defeated Duquesne 86-50 and Fordham 108-60.
This week: at Massachusetts on Wednesday, at Dayton on Saturday.
Information: The 108 points and 48-point margin over victory over Fordham were both season highs for the Musketeers.

25.Pittsburgh
Record: 16-5
Last week’s ranking: 16
Last week: Defeated St. John’s 63-53, lost to South Florida 70-61.
This week: at No. 4 West Virginia on Wednesday, Seton Hall on Saturday.
Information: Gilbert Brown scored a career-high 25 points off the bench in the loss to South Florida.

Dropped out: No. 17 Wake Forest, No. 18 Gonzaga, No. 23 Clemson, No. 25 Mississippi.

Others to watch: Clemson (16-6), Cornell (18-3), Florida State (16-5), Marquette (13-8), Rhode Island (17-3).

Most overrated: Mississippi is still No. 25 in The Associated Press media poll even though you can make a case the Rebels shouldn’t even be in the top 35.

Most underrated: Missouri in only 10th in the others receiving votes in The AP poll, which is just baffling.

The Field of 65

ACC (7): Clemson, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest

America East (1): Vermont

Atlantic 10 (3): Rhode Island, Temple, Xavier

Atlantic Sun (1): Jacksonville

Big 12 (7): Baylor, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Oklahoma State, Texas, Texas A&M

Big East (8): Connecticut, Georgetown, Louisville, Marquette, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Villanova, West Virginia

Big Sky (1): Northern Colorado

Big South (1): Coastal Carolina

Big Ten (4): Michigan State, Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin

Big West (1): Pacific

Colonial (1): Old Dominion

Conference USA (2): UAB, UTEP

Horizon (1): Butler

Ivy (1): Cornell

Metro Atlantic (1): Siena

Mid-American (1): Kent State

Mid-Eastern (1): Morgan State

Missouri Valley (1): Northern Iowa

Mountain West (3): BYU, New Mexico, UNLV

Northeast (1): Quinnipiac

Ohio Valley (1): Murray State

Pac-10 (2): Arizona State, California

Patriot (1): Lehigh

SEC (6): Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Tennessee, Vanderbilt

Southern (1): Western Carolina

Southland (1): Sam Houston State

Summit (1): Oakland

Sun Belt (1): Western Kentucky

SWAC (1): Arkansas-Pine Bluff

WAC (1): Utah State

West Coast (2): Gonzaga, St. Mary’s

New to the dance: Florida, Texas-El Paso

Tossed off the floor: Minnesota, Utah State

The Bubble Team:Charlotte

Hello NIT: Arizona, Arkansas State, Charlotte, Cincinnati, College of Charleston, Dayton, George Mason, Harvard, Jackson State, Louisiana Tech, Memphis, Minnesota, Nevada, Northeastern, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Richmond, Robert Morris, St. John’s, San Diego State, Seton Hall, South Carolina, South Florida, Stony Brook, Texas Tech, Tulsa, Virginia, VCU, Washington, Weber State, Wichita State, William & Mary

John Perrotto is an author of Basketball Prospectus. You can contact John by clicking here or click here to see John's other articles.

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<< Previous Article
Sorting out the Big 10 (02/02)
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