Monday, February 28, 2011

ESPN/USA Today Rankings 2/28

The new rankings are out and there are a few surprises, especially at the top.  Ohio State is the new #1, jumping Kansas, who stands at #2.  Duke fell three spots following their loss, while BYU moved up to #3 in the country. Here is the top ten:

1. Ohio State
2. Kansas
3. BYU
4. Duke
5. Pittsburgh
6. Purdue
7. Notre Dame
8. Texas
9. San Diego State
10. Wisconsin

Ohio State received 17 of the 31 first place votes, with Kansas getting the rest of them.  It's interesting that Ohio State jumped over Kansas, because both teams did not lose this week; however, Ohio State, despite being ranked #3 last week, received more first place votes than Kansas even last week.  BYU has really picked up steam and should get a #1 seed in the tournament assuming they win out, while Duke's inconsistency is being exposed.  The Blue Devils are arguably the best team in the country when Kyrie Irving is in the lineup, but Duke will have to make do without him.  Pittsburgh actually moved up a spot despite losing this week, since no other team made a case to replace the Panthers.  Purdue is playing great basketball, as the Boilermakers are poised to take a #2 seed and even compete for a #1 seed.  #7 Notre Dame has a tough week, playing Villanova and UConn and with two wins this week, they too have a legitimate case for a #1 seed as well.  Texas and San Diego State made the biggest drops this week in the top ten, with SDSU dropping from 4 to 9 and Texas from 5 to 8.  Rounding out the top ten, Wisconsin joins the party and has a game against Ohio State this weekend, as they look to stay a part of the elite teams in the Big Ten.

Outside the top ten, Louisville and Syracuse took huge strides forward, and are now ranked 11 and 12 respectively.  UNC and St. John's also jumped forward; UNC moves up to 13, while St. John's is 15.  #17 Georgetown, #18 Arizona, and #19 Villanova look to bounce back after going a combined 0-6 this week.  George Mason joined the top 25, as they continue to pile up wins and are now 25-5 on the season.

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