Parity adds to the mayhem in NCAA hoops
The GIST: On Mondays, college hoops makes lists. Both the AP polls and the women’s and men’s Wooden Award Top 20s — aka the shortlists for Player of the Year — dropped on Monday. Let’s dig into which squads made the cut, and who’s dangerously close to falling out.
The gals: South Carolina reigns at No. 1 for their 32nd straight week, while the Stanford Cardinal, record-setting LSU Tigers and Indiana Hoosiers bumped up to Nos. 2, 3 and 4, respectively. Those teams slid in thanks to Ohio State’s dramatic disintegration last week, which sent the Buckeyes tumbling eight spots to No. 10.
- New–No. 18 Michigan joined their Big Ten rival in the fall, while Iowa State and NC State flew the highest on the heels of ranked upsets, rising to Nos. 12 and 15, respectively.
The fellas: No. 1 Purdue may lead the charge, but the Big 12 is dominating the men’s poll with a full six squads in the Top 15. Alabama stumbled to No. 4 after being demolished by Oklahoma last weekend, but Auburn plummeted the hardest — the Tigers are clinging to No. 25 after two losses to unranked teams caused a 10-spot tumble. Pain.
- The teams with higher rises than your best jeans? New–Nos. 11 and 17, Baylor and Providence, who each climbed six ranks this week.
The parity: Though both polls prove parity in college hoops has spread far and wide, the men are making the starkest case: A full 50 teams — 14% of Division I squads — have been ranked throughout this chaotic season. And currently, the nation’s Top 4 teams lack even a single natty among their trophy cases…for now.
What to watch: See if the mayhem continues when the No. 17 Providence Friar fellas take on their Big East rivals, the No. 16 Xavier Musketeers, at 6:30 p.m. ET tonight on FS1. Then, catch tomorrow’s Big Ten Top 10 bedlam when the No. 8 Maryland Terrapin gals face the No. 6 Iowa Hawkeyes at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.