Clone Chronicles Weekly College Basketball Wrap Up: 2011 #3

After being a few weeks into the season, things are getting a little more serious. There were some interesting Thanksgiving Week tournaments that created interesting matchups, and overall fans learned more about their teams I think. This is my weekly post where we look at all of college basketball at a high level, starting with ISU, then the Big 12, followed by all of the NCAA with my Top 16 rankings

Iowa State Recap

Iowa State had another good week, going 2-0, and improving to 6-0 overall. Neither Kennesaw St. nor Montana St. were any real threats, but it was nice to see the Cyclones handling business against teams they should. This coaching staff has the guys playing on a high level, and it is nice to see the group continue to play with urgency despite the opponent or score. Hopefully more of that continues.

This week Iowa State goes on the road for the first time as they go to Cedar Falls to take on UNI on Wednesday night, then comes home to face Cal in the Big 12/Pac 10 hardwood series on Saturday. This week is really going to tell us a lot about what Iowa State has. Both games are toss-ups, and you obviously see the character of the team when they go on the road.

Ken Pomeroy Ratings:

This week: #65, projected to go 19-12 on the season, 6-10 in the Big 12
Last week: #89, projected to go 17-14 on the season, 5-11 in the Big 12

Big 12 Power Rankings, Top 16, and TV Picks After The Jump!

Big 12 Power Rankings:

1. Kansas (3-0 this week, 6-0 overall): Had a very nice week, beating A&M Corpus Christi, then Ohio, and Arizona, winning the Las Vegas Invitational. They face UCLA and Memphis this week, but the Jayhawks are looking like the best team in the Big 12.

2. Texas (2-0 this week, 5-1 overall): A ho-hum week, toppling Sam Houston St. and Rice. They face Lamar and USC this week, and should go 2-0 again. The Longhorns will go as far as Sophomore Jordan Hamilton will take them this year.

3. Kansas State (2-1 this week, 5-1 overall): Took 2nd place in the CBE Classic. After throttling eventual third place finisher Gonzaga by 17 points, they got smacked by Duke by 14. Duke is obviously a great team, but K-State playing in Kansas City I thought would result in a better matchup. Only have one game this week with Washington State on Friday.

4. Baylor (1-0 this week, 4-0 overall): Beat Lipscomb by 12. They play Prairie View A&M and Arizona State this week. We may or may not learn more about Baylor. Lots of talent, but they really won't be testing too much in the non-con. After Arizona State, they play Gonzaga a couple weeks later, then play nobody until conference season.

5. Missouri (3-0 this week, 5-0 overall): Beat Wyoming, LaSalle, and Ark-Pine Bluff. The Tigers face Georgetown and Oregon this week, and should be very interesting to see how they fare.

6. Texas A&M (2-1 this week, 5-1 overall): The Aggies took third in the Old Spice Classic by beating Manhattan and upsetting Temple in the consolation bracket. The Aggies did stumble in the first round to Boston College. Pacific and Stephen F. Austin is on the slate this week for A&M.

7. Oklahoma State (2-1 this week, 5-1 overall): OSU took third in the 76 Classic. After an opening round victory over DePaul, they stumbled to a really good VA Tech team 56-51, but edged out Murray State 66-49 for third place. OSU looks to move to 7-1 after they face Central Arkansas and LaSalle this week.

8. Iowa State (2-0 this week, 6-0 overall): Not too much to add I haven't said in their own recap. This team is playing better than I had expected and has the potential to finish outside of the bottom quartile if they continue to improve.

9. Nebraska (1-0 this week, 4-2 overall): After dropping a couple games the week previous, the Huskers put together a nice outing against USC, winning 60-58 at home. Huskers go against Jackson State and Creighton, where the residents of Nebraska will determine which basketball team they will root for this season.

10. Texas Tech (1-2 this week, 4-3 overall): The Red Raiders are not playing as well as I thought they would this season. They whooped Georgia Southern, but then got blown out by St. Mary's and lost to USF. St. Mary's is better than them, but I don't know about losing by 20. Also, I thought Tech was better than USF.  It is a little bit of a head scratcher when you have 4 Seniors and 1 Junior starting and you just are not playing well. While this team was not great last year, they did win 19 games the year previous and beat some quality non-con foes like Washington and UTEP. This week, they are up against Oral Roberts and Washington, and going 0-2 would not shock me.

11. Colorado (1-1 this week, 2-3 overall): Texas Tech has me scratching my head, but not as much as the Buffs are. They beat Alcorn State by 40, but then go to Harvard and lose 82-66. Now Harvard is a contender for the Ivy league championship and it is a road game, so a win for the Buffs wasn't automatic or anything. At the same time, the Harvard game was supposed to be a pick 'em, and it was essentially a beating. CU now has road losses to a decent Georgia team, the University of San Francisco, and Harvard. I guess the Buffs get some props for going on the road as much as they have in the early going. CU has TX-Pan Am and Oregon St this week, and should get back to winning.... I think.

12. Oklahoma (0-3 this week, 3-3 overall): This week got progressively worse for the Sooners. The Sooners went to Maui where they faced Kentucky and lost 76-64. No worries there, as Kentucky is going to be a force this year, and the Sooners are not expected to be at all. Following Kentucky, the Sooners then faced Virginia, a team that was supposed to match up fairly evenly with them, and lost 74-56. Not the kind of outing that was expected. To cap off Maui, the Sooners faced Chaminade, the host of the event in a road game environment and a D-II team, and lost by 4. Now Chaminade played tough against Michigan State so maybe they are all that, but still. Go from losing to a likely conference champion, to losing to a team that is supposed to be towards the middle to bottom of another BCS conference, to then losing to a D-II squad. A forgettable trip to Maui to say the least I would imagine. It does not get easier this week, when the Sooners have to go to Arkansas and Arizona this week.

Top 16

Going with a table format here this time to see how it all looks:

 

Rank Last Week's Rank

Team & Record

Weekly Result Notes Upcoming Schedule
1 1 Duke (6-0)

Ws: Marquette 82-77 (neutral), Kansas State 82-68 (neutral), @Oregon 98-71

Won the CBE Classic. Continue to look great on their quest for a repeat Michigan State, Butler (Neutral)
2 NR UConn (5-0)

Ws: Wichita St. 83-79(neutral), Michigan State 70-67(neutral),
Kentucky 84-67 (neutral).

How does a team go from unranked to ranked #2? By beating three potential conference champions in consecutive days. The Huskies raised some eyebrows winning the Maui Invitational. All the Huskies have to be is mediocre in the Big East, and they are going dancing. New Hampshire, MD Baltimore County
3 2 Ohio State (5-0) Ws: Morehead St. 64-45, Miami (OH) 66-45 No typos there, Ohio State just did the same thing twice. @Florida State, IUPUI, W. Carolina
4 3

Kansas (6-0)

Ws: A&M Corpus Christi 82-41,
Ohio 98-41 (neutral), Arizona 89-79 (neutral)

 

Won the Las Vegas Invitational with an impressive win over Arizona. UCLA, Memphis (neutral), Colorado State (neutral)
5 4 Pitt (7-0) Ws: Robert Morris 74-53, Penn 82-58
Thanksgiving week was more the cupcake variety for the Panthers Duquesne (neutral), Rider
6 5 Kentucky (4-1)

Ws: Oklahoma 76-64 (neutral), Washington 74-67 (neutral)

Ls: UConn 84-67 (neutral)

A surprising loss to UConn in Maui, but Kentucky is a young team, and in the grand scheme of things one loss is not a huge deal. UConn played great down in Maui Boston University, @UNC             
7 10 Texas (5-1)
Ws: Sam Houston St 84-50, Rice 62-59 The Longhorns look to be the second best team in the Big 12 right now Lamar, @USC
8 12 BYU (6-0)
Ws: Miss. Valley St. 86-36, South Florida 77-75 (neutral), St. Mary's 74-73 (neutral) The Cougars picked up the South Padre Island Title with a couple of close wins.  @Creighton, Hawaii (neutral)
9 7 Georgetown (6-0)
Ws: UNC Asheville 87-72 Quiet week for the Hoyas. This week will get more interesting for them Missouri (neutral), Utah St.
10 6 Michigan State (5-1)

Ws: Chaminade 82-74 (neutral), Washington 76-71 (neutral), Tennessee Tech 73-55

Ls: UConn 70-67 (neutral)

Michigan State did not look as good as people would expect, struggling in their games in Maui. It doesn't get easier with Duke on the schedule this week. @Duke, Bowling Green
11 NR UNLV (6-0)
Ws: Tulsa 80-71 (neutral), Murray St. 69-55 (neutral), VA Tech 71-59 (neutral) UNLV looking good this year as well, winning the 76 Classic. @Illinois St, @Nevada
12 16 Minnesota (6-0)
Ws: North Dakota St 84-65 Didn't do much this week, but remember, this team has a resume of UNC and WVU wins from Puerto Rico Virginia, Cornell
13 NR Notre Dame (7-0) Ws: Georgia 89-83 (neutral), Cal 57-44 (neutral), Wisconsin 58-51 (neutral) Might have had the second best week to UConn this past week, winning the Old Spice Classic. Indiana St., Kentucky (neutral), Gonzaga
14 NR Tennessee (5-0)
Ws: VCU 77-72 (neutral), Villanova 78-68 (neutral) Lots of controversy regarding Bruce Pearl, but the team responded well, winning the preseason NIT Middle Tennessee St, @Pitt
15 15 Illinois (6-1)
Ws: Yale 73-47, @Western Michigan 78-63 The Illini face some good competition over the next couple of weeks, which should tell us how good they will really be this year. UNC, Gonzaga (neutral)
16 8 Villanova (5-1)

Ws: UCLA 82-70 (neutral)

Ls: Tennessee 78-68 (neutral)

The loss to Tennessee hurts. Obviously this is a really talented team that is a contender in the Big East. They won't face anymore stiff competition until conference play, however, which is what makes the Tennessee loss damaging at this point. St. Joe's

 

Drop outs: Washington, Kansas State, Memphis
Also Considered:
Kansas State, Memphis, Baylor, Syracuse

A note ought to be said about the dropouts. With Washington, it was due to their two losses. I'm not even sure if they are better than Arizona at this point. With K-State and Memphis, it was just a matter of the cutoff. K-State had a chance to impress in a big spot, but did not. Memphis hasn't had that chance yet. This early in the year, there is going to be a ton of movement. After another week or two, it will stabilize more. When teams are going from 2-3 games to 6-7 games, it is essentially doubling their resume, and giving us more information on how that team is.

Notable Games On TV:

My picks for good games to watch on TV. There are others, but these are games I think are worth checking out:

Monday - 6pm CST Virginia vs. Minnesota, ESPN2. A good matchup and a chance for us Cyclone fans to see how Virginia looks, a team ISU will play in about a month

Tuesday - 6:30pm CST Ohio State vs. Florida State, ESPN; 8pm CST, Georgetown vs. Missouri, ESPNU;  8:30pm CST, UNC vs. Illinois ESPN;

Wednesday - 8:30pm CST Michigan State vs. Duke, ESPN; With ISU vs. UNI starting at 7pm (on the CW for those in Central Iowa), will be switching after.

Thursday  - 6pm CST Arizona State vs. Baylor, ESPN2; 8pm CST UCLA vs. Kansas, ESPN2... For those that want to see some of the Big 12/Pac 10 series

Friday - None

Saturday - 11:30am CST Kentucky vs. UNC, CBS; 4:15pm CST Illinois vs. Gonzaga, ESPN... There is Butler vs. Duke at around 2:15 or so on ESPN, but I don't think that will be a great game. Overall, it is a Football Day with all the Conference Championship Games going on. It's too bad there are conflicts on a pretty good basketball day, but that's the way it goes. For someone like me, I'll just be keeping my eyes on whatever looks good.

Sunday - None

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