College Basketball Power Rankings: Week 8

By Zack Cimini - Covers Expert

The shuffle amongst the top twenty-five power rankings continues. Teams that we would have never expected to dip have free-fallen in North Carolina, Ohio State, Maryland, Michigan, and to a degree Virginia. See which teams have moved up in this week's latest edition of power rankings as we approach the mid-point of January conference play.

ncb Power Rankings

Rank Last Week Change Team W-L (ATS) Power Rating Team Comments
1 1 same Gonzaga 18-1
(10-9-0)
-22.5 Gonzaga
The Zags have rediscovered their ATS form with consecutive blowouts. A forty-four point win over San Diego was followed up by a twenty-five point win against Loyola Marymount. Their versatility and balanced scoring are strengths not seen on many teams in college basketball.
2 3 up 1 Duke 15-1
(10-6-0)
-22 Duke
The focus does not seem to be on Duke and that may be to the liking of Coach K. The Blue Devils have ripped off nine straight wins since their lone loss against Stephen F Austin. Defense has been the key as they have allowed an average of just fifty-seven points over their last seven games.
3 4 up 1 Auburn 15-0
(8-7-0)
-21.5 Auburn
Close wins throughout non-conference play for the Tigers have changed over in SEC play. They have a double-digit win over Mississippi State and played their best game all season in a Saturday rout over Georgia.
4 6 up 2 Baylor 13-1
(9-5-0)
-20 Baylor
It'll be hard to top the week the Baylor Bears had. They survived a close hard fought win over Texas Tech and then pulled away convincingly to defeat the Kansas Jayhawks. Now Baylor will have the bullseye of every conference opponent and must deal with each team's A-game effort.
5 2 down 3 Kansas 12-3
(8-7-0)
-19.5 Kansas
The Jayhawks just could not close the deficit against Baylor on Saturday. One flurry ended as the Bears defense clamped down on the Jayhawks. The paradigm does not shift with the Jayhawks two losses. They're one of the few teams that can be depended on for the full season of college hoops ATS.
6 8 up 2 San Diego St. 17-0
(12-5-0)
-19 San Diego St.
The Aztecs can only continue to be upgraded based on their quality non-conference wins over Iowa, Creighton, and Utah. They continue to be one of the few teams that oddsmakers can't adjust the number properly on. Against Boise State Saturday they were comfortably ahead of the spread before the ten-minute mark in the first half.
7 N/R N/R Kentucky 12-3
(7-8-0)
-18.5 Kentucky
A team that has quietly settled back in has been Kentucky. The Wildcats appeared to be in trouble after consecutive losses in Las Vegas. Yet they've regrouped and covered in four straight games.
8 12 up 4 Butler 15-1
(12-4-0)
-17 Butler
The doubt for a downfall for Butler was on bettors minds Friday. Against a dangerous Providence team the line trickled down pre tip-off to the Friars side. The Bulldogs quickly showcased that was an improper move. Butler's team philosophy on both ends of the floor is a skillset few teams have.
9 9 same Louisville 13-3
(8-7-1)
-16 Louisville
A team that remains a question mark even with a great record is Louisville. After a shaky performance loss at home against Florida State the Cardinal picked up consecutive wins. They clearly weren't capable of their top ranking a month ago but can be dangerous once they hit their team ceiling.
10 10 same Oregon 14-3
(11-6-0)
-15.5 Oregon
As far as ATS goes Oregon backers aren't too happy. They've failed to cover in five straight games including close calls against Arizona and Arizona State. Poor free throw shooting and turnovers have been a main reason for faltering ATS. They'll get that improved and transfer their wins into covers.
11 17 up 6 Florida St. 14-2
(9-7-0)
-15.5 Florida St.
The Seminoles are riding seven game win streak and appear to be the team on the rise in the ACC. They'll be well-rested on a full weeks rest before they face face a Virginia team back pedaling off of consecutive losses.
12 5 down 7 Michigan St 13-4
(8-9-0)
-15 Michigan St
The Spartans momentum folded Sunday in a big way against Purdue. Under Coach Izzo their loss Sunday was the worst as a ranked top ten team. The vulnerability of the Spartans has been shown before earlier in non-conference and puts them prone to an upset against anyone.
13 14 up 1 Dayton 14-2
(9-7-0)
-15 Dayton
Not many tests are available in the Atlantic 10 this year for the Dayton Flyers. That portion of their schedule is upcoming as Dayton will take on VCU, Saint Louis, and a much-improved Richmond team.
14 15 up 1 Villanova 12-3
(7-7-1)
-14.5 Villanova
Jay Wright has coached a team up that has obvious holes from prior teams. A quality win over Creighton was followed up by a double-digit win over Georgetown. Calculating missteps from the Wildcats is where money is to be made. Watch out for their end up the month matchups.
15 18 up 3 West Virginia 13-2
(9-6-0)
-14.5 West Virginia
The Mountaineers showed they're not going to be deterred by a tough loss. During conference play a loss in the manner the Mountaineers lost to Kansas could have caused a dip. Instead they neutralized both Oklahoma State and Texas Tech to under fifty-five points.
16 7 down 9 Maryland 13-3
(7-9-0)
-14 Maryland
Certain teams get figured out and even adjustments from coaching can't provide a necessary spark. The Terrapins have dropped three of their last six games and do not appear to have the offense once a hole is dug. As young as they are this is a stage in their season that they must recover quickly.
17 19 up 2 Arizona 11-5
(8-8-0)
-13.5 Arizona
The team led by youth that is on the rise are the Arizona Wildcats. If they can find better consistency shooting in the half-court they may end up a top twelve team. The Pac-12 not being a strong conference top to bottom should give the Wildcats a nice window to improve.
18 22 up 4 Wichita St. 15-1
(9-5-2)
-12.5 Wichita St.
The Shockers gave Sunday early morning bettors a whirlwind for their money. Needing double-overtime against a short-handed Huskies the Shockers failed by a half point to cover. This has been an issue for the Shockers as they covered against the Sooners by a half point and nearly blew a big lead to narrowly cash against Memphis.
19 23 up 4 Colorado 13-3
(7-8-1)
-12 Colorado
The Buffaloes have poured on some impressive routs ATS this season. Sunday's time slot right after the first NFL game likely made plenty of bettors happy. Against Utah after a week layoff the Buffaloes raced out to a twenty-two-point lead and cruised. Their explosive lineup has several potent scorers.
20 13 down 7 Virginia 11-4
(4-11-0)
-11 Virginia
The resume of the Cavaliers looked great with stout landslide wins over Syracuse, North Carolina, and Virginia Tech. Suddenly consecutive losses have uncovered the issues the Cavaliers were able to mask. They essentially do not have any premier scoring talent as they try to rely on last year's role players. This could create multiple rough stretches for Virginia.
21 11 down 10 Ohio St. 11-5
(10-6-0)
-10.5 Ohio St.
A string of losses from the Buckeyes have seemingly come out of nowhere. Ohio State's non-conference wins over Kentucky, Villanova, and North Carolina still outweigh their four-game skid.
22 N/R N/R Seton Hall 12-4
(12-4-0)
-10 Seton Hall
The forgotten team in the Seton Hall Pirates have arguably played the best basketball over the last couple of weeks. They've corrected their offensive issues and now have multiple consistent scorers to go with stud guard Myles Powell. An added bonus for bettors is they've covered four games in a row.
23 N/R N/R Creighton 13-4
(9-8-0)
-9.5 Creighton
The Bluejays hit a bit of a dip losing to Butler and Villanova. Those would have been tough games for any team to deal with at the beginning of conference play. To avoid a three-game losing streak and defeat Xavier by twelve on the road shows what this team is made of. At 13-4 the Bluejays are a steady reliable team.
24 N/R N/R Iowa 11-5
(10-5-1)
-9 Iowa
The gauntlet of the Big Ten is hurting teams at the top and middle of the conference. Stabilizing and keeping losing streaks to two games is what Iowa did this past week. Downing Maryland in the fashion that they did showcased an eighteen-point victory.
25 20 down 5 Memphis 13-3
(9-7-0)
-8 Memphis
The Memphis Tigers showed the best resiliency of a top twenty-five team this weekend. Trailing essentially the entire game against South Florida the Tigers dug deep and utilized an increase in defensive intensity. It turned out to be a win-win for the Tigers as they avoided a three-game losing streak and covered by a half-point.

Power Ratings compute offensive and defensive statistics into one number for each team, while accounting for factors like recent performances and strength of schedule. Power Ratings can be used as a baseline for relative spread index to compare current or future match-ups between two teams. The relative spread does not account for non-statistical factors like home-field advantage, recent injuries, game time decisions, rivalries, publicity, and weather.

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