2020-21 RTC16: Week 5

Posted by Matthew Eisenberg on December 28th, 2020

The gap separating #1 Gonzaga and #2 Baylor from the rest of the country continued to widen this past week as the Bulldogs and Bears went a combined 4-0 with an average margin of victory of 33.8 points. Gonzaga’s offense continuously broke down Virginia’s defense in ways that few teams have in the Tony Bennett era. #3 Kansas backed up its win against Texas Tech with a convincing performance over West Virginia, while #4 Villanova enters this week with COVID-19 concerns, they moved to 3-0 in the Big East with a 17-point victory at Marquette last week.

Conference Breakdown: Big Ten (5), Big 12 (5), Big East (2), SEC (2), AAC (1), WCC (1)

Risers

  • Houston: The Cougars began AAC play with a 26-point win against Temple and overcame a slow start to beat UCF on the road, 63-54. Houston is a perfect 7-0 and is just one of seven teams with an adjusted offensive and defensive efficiency ranking of 20th or better. After being ranked in the top five in just one of eight RTC ballots a week ago, Houston this week earned six top-5 votes.
  • Texas Tech: After last week’s narrow loss at the hands of Kansas, Chris Beard’s squad squared up its Big 12 record with a two-point win against Oklahoma. Terrence Shannon’s team-high 21 points was the second time this season he has scored 20 or more, tying the number of times he did it last season. Last week Texas Tech appeared on just four RTC ballots, this week they made all but one.
  • Creighton: After starting league play with a loss to Marquette, Creighton has rattled off three straight wins, including a five–point win this past week against Xavier. The Bluejays’ balanced attack has seen four or more players score in double-figures in each of the team’s past three games. Creighton rises from out of the RTC rankings and into the top 12.

Fallers

  • Iowa: Despite leading 80-73 with just 44 seconds to go, Iowa could not escape Minnesota with a win. Iowa’s defense saw Minnesota make 17 three-point attempts, none bigger than Marcus Carr’s game-tying three in the final seconds of regulation. After going 2-8 on the road in Big Ten play last season, giving away a game the Hawkeyes seemingly had wrapped up has dropped Iowa to an average RTC ranking that is outside of the top 10.
  • Michigan State: Friday’s loss to Wisconsin dropped Michigan State to 0-2 in Big Ten play for the first time since the 2006-07 season. The 85 points allowed by the Spartans was the fifth-most the school has allowed in regulation in a league game since the 2002 season began. The Spartans fall out of this week’s RTC poll after coming in at #12 last week.

Notable Upcoming Games

  • Monday: Michigan State @ Minnesota, 8 PM EST, Big Ten Network
  • Tuesday: Houston @ Tulsa, 9 PM EST, ESPN 2
  • Wednesday: Tennessee @ Missouri, 9 PM EST, SEC Network
  • Thursday: Colorado @ USC, 9 PM EST, ESPN 2
  • Saturday: Iowa @ Rutgers, 2 PM EST, ESPN 2
  • Saturday: Texas @ Kansas, Noon EST, ESPN 2
Matthew Eisenberg (121 Posts)


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