The 2017-18 RTC16: Week Fourteen

Posted by Walker Carey on February 19th, 2018

Another wild week of college basketball is in the books with several more top teams suffering surprising defeats while a number of others continue to prep for postseason play next month. #5 Duke showed why it should still be considered one of the country’s most dangerous teams with an easy home win over Virginia Tech on Wednesday followed by a hard-fought road win at #16 Clemson Sunday. What made the Blue Devils’ week even more impressive was that both victories came without the services of freshman phenom Marvin Bagley III, who is currently nursing a knee injury. #2 Villanova experienced both sides of the coin last week, as it took on both an upset loss and earned a very impressive victory. The Wildcats were unable to overcome 19 turnovers and a 3-of-20 three-point shooting performance in Wednesday’s loss at Providence, but Jay Wright’s group rebounded in a big way Saturday in dominating #4 Xavier throughout a 16-point road win. This week’s Quick N’ Dirty analysis is after the jump.

Quick N’ Dirty Analysis.

  • Virginia is the new #1. The Cavaliers were the beneficiary of Villanova’s upset loss, rising to the top spot of this week’s RTC16 after scoring a 59-50 victory over Miami (FL) in its only action of the week. Tony Bennett’s squad is now 24-2 on the season and remains in prime position to take home another ACC regular season title. The Cavaliers figure to be in the #1 spot again next week as they will be heavy favorites in both their home game against Georgia Tech on Wednesday and in their trip to Pittsburgh on Saturday.
  • #6 Texas Tech and #12 Auburn have become the hunted. The Red Raiders and Tigers are two of the best stories of this college basketball season. Both teams have made surprising runs to lead their respective conferences and that has correspondingly given their opponents a chance to make a statement. This caught to them on Saturday when Texas Tech’s seven-game winning streak came to an end at Baylor and Auburn failed to overcome a horrific start in its nine-point loss at South Carolina. To make matters worse for the Tigers, they lost starting forward Anfernee McLemore to a dislocated ankle and fractured tibia in the defeat.
  • #13 Wichita State has found its groove. Just a few weeks ago, the Shockers were struggling to find their footing in their first season of AAC play. They have now won four straight games, culminating this week with an intense comeback victory over Temple on Thursday followed by a very impressive triumph at Cincinnati on Sunday. Wichita State has games against Tulane and SMU on the docket this week, and if it can stay on the winning path in those, it will be interesting to see how the Shockers can parlay their February surge into the postseason.

Game of the Week. #6 Texas Tech vs. #9 Kansas. The game of the year in the Big 12 will take place in Lubbock on Saturday. No storyline will be discussed more than Texas Tech’s attempt to stand in the way of Kansas taking home its 14th straight Big 12 regular season title. The Jayhawks will have revenge on their minds, as they were taken apart by the Red Raiders in Lawrence last month (speaking of statement wins). An item to keep an eye on here will be the status of Texas Tech star guard Keenan Evans, who is listed as day-to-day after suffering a toe injury in Saturday’s loss at Baylor.

Keep Tabs On. #9 Kansas vs. Oklahoma; #7 North Carolina vs. Syracuse; #12 Auburn vs. Alabama; #5 Duke vs. Louisville; #2 Villanova vs. Creighton; #5 Duke vs. Syracuse.

Conference Call. ACC (4), Big Ten (3), AAC (2), Big East (2), Big 12 (2), SEC (1), Pac-12 (1), WCC (1)

WCarey (299 Posts)

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One response to “The 2017-18 RTC16: Week Fourteen”

  1. Ron says:

    Quietly…North Carolina.

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