After many losses by Top-25 teams last week, there are a number of changes in the AP Poll. Here are three thoughts taken from the week 13 poll.
After the Blue Devil’s no show at Miami on Wednesday night, it was unclear just how far they would slide in the polls. They ended up managing to stay in the top-five, albeit by an extremely small margin over new-No. 6 Syracuse. CBS’s Seth Davis, a voter in the poll, had Duke ranked the lowest at 13th, while four voters had them ranked up at No. 3. Duke still leads the nation in RPI, but obviously has not been as sharp since Ryan Kelly went down with an injury. It is interesting to look at how different voters formulate their rankings. Some emphasize recent play and future outlooks, while others look at the entire season’s body of work. Duke should not get down on themselves however. At the rate top-five teams have been dropping games recently, they could very possibly see themselves in the discussion for the top slot in the next few weeks, especially if Kelly returns.
Five of last weeks Top-10 dropped games during this seven day span. Along with Duke, then-No. 3 Syracuse was upended by Villanova in overtime and fell to No. 6. Then-No. 5 Louisville lost twice in conference road games, to Villanova and Georgetown respectively, dropping them out of the top-10 to No. 12. Arizona lost for the second time this season, this time to UCLA at home. The Wildcats sunk two spots to No. 8. Butler, coming off their stunning victory at the buzzer over Gonzaga, followed up that win with a loss to La Salle. Thanks to a victory over a solid Temple team, the Bulldogs were able to hold the same No. 9 spot as last week.
Other Large Rises and Slides
The big winner of the week was Miami, who did not let up following their dominant performance over Duke, crushing Florida State at home on Sunday. They moved up 11 slots to No. 14. Oregon rose six spots and crept into the top-10 with a victories over both Washington and Washington State. On the flip side, the aforementioned Louisville, as well as Kansas State, each slid seven spots after failing to come out with a victory in either game this week. Minnesota took the biggest plummet of any team, going from No. 12 to No. 23 in the course of just one week. They lost two low scoring conference road games to Northwestern and Wisconsin, and now have lost four in a row after starting the season a blistering 15-1. Virginia Commonwealth went from No. 19 last week to only garnering four votes total after picking up two losses of their own this week.