RTC Top 25: Week OnePosted by KDoyle on November 14th, 2011
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With nearly every team in last week’s Top 25 either winning or not having games scheduled, there was predictably very little movement in the poll. In fact, the top seven teams remain unchanged with North Carolina coming in at number one again, although they are not a unanimous pick as one pollster is not entirely sold on Carolina just yet. The one big change in the poll was Vanderbilt dropping ten spots after its surprising loss to Cleveland State. QnD analysis after the jump…
- Carolina At the Top—After defeating Michigan State in what was a historic night on Veteran’s Day in San Diego, North Carolina ensured there was no hangover on Sunday as they spoiled UNC Asheville’s home opener at their new arena to the tune of a 16-point victory. Sitting at 2-0 on the young season, the Heels don’t figure to be truly challenged until they visit Wisconsin for the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.
- High Risers and Big Droppers—May Vanderbilt have been just a little overhyped heading into the season? It is still very early, but Vandy found out there is still work to be done as they fell to Cleveland State—a Viking team without Norris Cole—by 13 points on their home floor. With the loss, Vandy dropped ten spots in our poll to #17. Not a whole lot of movement otherwise, although California with two strong wins at home snuck into the poll checking in at #21.
- Where to rank Wisconsin and Michigan?—There is some pollster variance as to where these two Big Ten squads should be ranked. Wisconsin is ranked as high as #6 in one poll, but unranked in another, while Michigan is #8 in a poll and unranked in another. As is the case with many teams early in the year, it will take a game or two against a legitimate and solid opponent for the nation to know whether a team has lived up to its preseason hype.
- Two new faces—As previously stated, California enters this week’s poll at #21 and is joined by the Belmont Bruins who have slipped in at #25. It isn’t too often that beginning the season with a loss will catapult a team into the Top 25, but our pollsters certainly took note of Belmont’s near upset of Duke. Ricky Byrd’s Bruins are for real, people.
- Top 25 Games of the Week:
#2 Kentucky vs. #13 Kansas—Two of the most storied programs in college hoops history duke it out in New York at the State Farm Champions Classic.
#3 Ohio State vs. #7 Florida—A great early season test for both squads. Will Florida’s thin and young frontcourt have an answer for Jared Sullinger?
#14 Memphis vs. #25 Belmont—Talk about a murderers’ row opening schedule for Belmont: first Duke, and now Memphis. If Belmont’s performance against Duke is any indication of what kind of team the Bruins have this year, then Memphis better bring their ‘A’ game as this is no cupcake from the Atlantic Sun conference.
- Also Receiving Votes—A total of nine teams comprise the receiving votes category in this week’s poll. It wouldn’t surprise me if this number continues to grow in the coming weeks as pollsters decipher what teams are worthy of a spot in the Top 25.
- Conference Call—Big East (6), SEC (4), Big 10 (3), Big 12 (3), ACC (2), Pac-12 (2), Atlantic 10 (2), WCC (1), Conference USA (1), Atlantic Sun (1)