2019-20 RTC16: Week 10

Posted by Walker Carey on January 20th, 2020

It is often stated that college basketball is where the unexpected becomes the ordinary and that was on full display last week as three members of the previous top five of the RTC16 suffered a pair of defeats. #9 Duke entered the week as winners of nine straight games, but that came to a screeching halt on Tuesday night at Clemson when the Blue Devils fell behind early and were unable to right the ship in a 79-72 loss. A tough week became even tougher on Saturday when #8 Louisville took a 15-point lead a little over 10 minutes into the game and then made enough winning plays down the stretch to leave Cameron Indoor Stadium with an impressive 79-73 victory. #12 Butler looked like it was going to survive #7 Seton Hall at home on Wednesday, as the Bulldogs jumped out to a 10-point halftime lead and seemed to be in complete control of the game. That was until Pirates star guard Myles Powell came up with some other plans. Powell scored 19 of his game-high 29 points in the second half, lifting Seton Hall to a formidable 78-70 win. There is an old adage about never letting one team beat you twice, but that seemed to be the case with Butler when it was subsequently dominated at DePaul on Saturday en route to a 79-66 loss. #16 Auburn began the week as one of the sport’s two remaining unbeaten teams, but the Tigers saw their hot start cool down significantly in a pair of uncompetitive losses at Alabama and at Florida. It will be interesting to track Duke, Butler and Auburn in the coming weeks to see if last week was just a blip on the radar or if it was the start of a troubling trend that will impact their seasons. This week’s Quick N’ Dirty after the jump.

Quick N’ Dirty Analysis.

  • Baylor is the new #1. Baylor finds itself in the top spot in the RTC16 after wins over Iowa State and Oklahoma State moved the Bears’ winning streak to 14 games. Saturday’s victory in Stillwater was notable in that the Bears found themselves down 10 points with 12:55 to play before firing off a 19-4 run to grab control of the game and leave Gallagher-Iba Arena with a victory. Standout guard Jared Butler led the way with 17 points and reserve guard Devonte Bandoo contributed a season-high 16 points, as Baylor moved its Big 12 record to 5-0. The Bears will look to move that mark to 6-0 on Monday night when they host Oklahoma.
  • #3 Kansas bounces back on the road. There were plenty of questions about where Kansas was headed this season following its uninspired performance in a 67-55 home loss to Baylor on January 11. The Jayhawks did their best in answering those questions last week, as they earned comfortable road wins at Oklahoma and at Texas. Kansas big man Udoka Azubuike was no match for either the Sooners or the Longhorns, as he averaged 16.5 points and 11.5 rebounds in the two road victories. The Jayhawks will look to remain on the winning path Tuesday when they host intrastate rival Kansas State in the Sunflower Showdown.
  • #6 Dayton keeps on winning. Dayton is now 16-2 after Friday night’s thrilling overtime victory at Saint Louis. It should be noted that the Flyers’ only two losses came in an overtime classic against Kansas in the Maui Invitational title game and at the buzzer versus Colorado. A few breaks here or there and Anthony Grant‘s squad could easily be sitting at 18-0. Sophomore forward Obi Toppin has established himself as one of the country’s best players and junior guards Jalen Crutcher and Ibi Watson have shown that the Flyers are far more than just the Obi Toppin show. Playing in the Atlantic 10 does not afford Dayton the opportunity to play in premier games every night, but as a college hoops fan, you owe it to yourself to check out the Flyers.

Game of the Week. #9 Villanova vs. #12 Butler. Tuesday night’s Big East battle at Villanova represents an opportunity for both teams. Villanova can show it is still a major contender in the conference race while Butler can show last week’s losses to Seton Hall and DePaul were nothing more than minor speed bump in the midst of a great season. The individual match-up to keep an eye on in this game will be the battle of the veteran point guards. Butler point guard Kamar Baldwin gives the Bulldogs a lead guard who has the ability to take over a game at any point. Villanova point guard Collin Gillespie is a crafty veteran who can make plays offensively and harass opponents on the defensive end.

Keep Tabs On. #15 West Virginia vs. Texas; #1 Baylor vs. Oklahoma; #11 Michigan State vs. Indiana; #13 Oregon vs. USC; #12 Butler vs. Marquette; #14 Kentucky vs. Texas Tech; #1 Baylor vs. Florida; #4 San Diego State vs. UNLV.

Conference Call.  Big 12 (3), ACC (3), Big East (3), SEC (2), Big Ten (1), Pac-12 (1), Atlantic 10 (1), Mountain West (1), WCC (1).

WCarey (318 Posts)

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