The 2017-18 RTC16: Week Twelve

Posted by Walker Carey on February 6th, 2018

Saturday was a rough day to be a blue-blood in college basketball as three traditional powers fell at the hands of unranked opponents. To tip off the day, #10 Kansas trailed basically throughout a home loss to unranked Oklahoma State, marking the third time this season that the Jayhawks have lost at Allen Fieldhouse and the most home defeats they have suffered since the 1998-99 campaign. Following up that surprising result, #8 Duke suffered its own stunning defeat by losing to a St. John’s team group on an 11-game Big East losing streak. Making matters even more interesting, Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski noted after the game that his team “was a very frustrating group to coach” and that the Blue Devils “got what we deserved.” #16 Arizona also lost Saturday, ending its seven-game winning streak after Washington used a Dominic Green three-pointer at the buzzer to treat its home crowd to a thrilling three-point victory. This week’s Quick N’ Dirty analysis is after the jump.

Quick N’ Dirty Analysis.

  • Villanova remains the #1 team. While plenty of other RTC16 teams keep losing, the Wildcats, on the other hand, just keep chugging along. Villanova is now 22-1 after scoring easy home victories over Creighton and Seton Hall last week. Jay Wright‘s group continues to look like the best team in the country and has really shown no signs of slowing down despite losing starter Phil Booth with a hand injury. The Wildcats host St. John’s and Butler this week — Saturday’s game with the Bulldogs will serve as a chance to avenge the team’s only loss of the season.
  • #5 Cincinnati is rolling. There is a good chance that the Bearcats are the quietest 21-2 team college basketball has seen in quite some time. Mick Cronin‘s group doesn’t grab many national headlines for their play but that has not stopped the team from rolling off 14 consecutive victories. Cincinnati, as always, is a hard-nosed defensive squad that currently ranks second in defensive efficiency nationally, and uses timely scoring from veterans Jacob Evans and Gary Clark to lead its offensive attack. It is still probably too early to declare a conference race over, but considering the way the Bearcats are playing coupled with their three-game lead over both Houston and Wichita State, they are a good bet to take home the AAC regular season title.

Game of the Week. #3 Purdue vs. #4 Michigan State. The Big Ten’s game of the year is scheduled to take place on Saturday when the Boilermakers visit the Spartans in a game that could help determine the regular season conference crown. While Michigan State figures to be the favorite due to its significant homecourt advantage at the Breslin Center, it must be noted that Purdue’s veteran squad is road-tested and accustomed to thriving in the rigors of a hostile environment. The match-up to keep an eye on here will be how Michigan State guards Cassius Winston and Tum Tum Nairn fare against Purdue guard Carsen Edwards. If Edwards can continue to perform in a terrific manner, the Boilermakers have a very good chance of leaving East Lansing with a very impressive road win.

Keep Tabs On. #10 Kansas vs. TCU; #11 Tennessee vs. Kentucky; #6 Xavier vs. Butler; #2 Virginia vs. Florida State; #3 Purdue vs. #12 Ohio State; #7 Auburn vs. Texas A&M; #8 Duke vs. North Carolina; #16 Arizona vs. UCLA; #1 Villanova vs. Butler; #6 Xavier vs. Creighton; #12 Saint Mary’s vs. #14 Gonzaga; #16 Arizona vs. USC.

Conference Call. ACC (3), Big Ten (3), Big East (2), Big 12 (2), SEC (2), WCC (2), AAC (1), Pac-12 (1).

WCarey (318 Posts)

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