Despite six of the top-10 teams losing last week, four of those teams actually remained in the top-10 this week. Understandably, it’s an incredibly difficult task to attempt to weight the losses of top programs objectively considering how many reputable teams have lost this season. As far as this week is concerned, the rankings were relatively safe as several ranked teams that lost once were not severely punished for being upset, which is fair as the competitive difference between being 1st or 25th in the rankings is relatively small. If this week’s rankings are an indicator of anything it is that parity is a difficult thing to gauge and predict as every team is uniquely fallible both from an overall and in-game perspective.
Top 25 College Basketball Rankings 2018: Week 16
Losing twice last week, the Oklahoma Sooners were finally and justifiably dropped from the rankings for the first time this season. Although Trae Young’s fall from grace is certainly one of the reasons for Oklahoma playing poorly, it has been the lack of playmakers on the roster that have truly held this team back. As great and supremely talented as Trae Young is, not even he can overcome a half-court trap, nor should he be expected to make Stephen Curry type shots on a regular basis. As this is a team sport, even the best and most prolific athletes need some assistance from time to time if for no other reason than predictability almost always condemns a team to fail sooner or later.
|Ranking||Team (1st place votes)|
|2||Michigan State (19)|
Moving up seven spots from 12th to 5th, the Duke Blue Devils are finally starting to look like the well-rounded championship contenders that everyone expected them to be going into the season. If the Blue Devils can continue to be as stingy on defense as they have been in their last two victories, they could find themselves playing their best basketball at exactly the right time. Can the persistent youngsters of Duke establish a versatile and competitive presence to allow them to win it all come April?
Dropped from rankings: Texas A&M 21, Oklahoma 23, Arizona State 25
Others receiving votes that did not make the poll: Baylor 52, Kentucky 33, Arizona State 32, Arkansas 23, UCLA 20, St. Bonaventure 13, Virginia Tech 12, Creighton 10, Penn State 6, Missouri 5, Kansas State 5, Texas A&M 4, TCU 4, Loyola-Chicago 2, Butler 2, East Tennessee State 1, Alabama 1, Boise State 1, Oklahoma 1