Big Ten Basketball Power Rankings: Preseason
1) Purdue (-)
W vs Samford, Morehead St
Back-to-back convincing wins against far inferior opponents does not tell you much about the Boilermakers. Purdue will get its first real test tonight against Xavier, a top 40 team according to KenPom.
2) Iowa (+7)
W vs North Dakota, Alabama St
Multiple wins of 30+ points, albeit against subpar teams. Iowa is the only other team to have two wins of 30 or more this week, right behind Purdue.
3) Michigan (+8)
W vs UNC Asheville, Youngstown St
Two big wins against 200+ KenPom ranked teams, but these games are just as important as games in March.
4) Northwestern (+4)
W vs North Dakota, Dayton
Northwestern has the win of the week in beating Dayton at home. They are rewarded as such.
5) Nebraska (+7)
W vs Lindenwood, Florida A&M
I understand that the top half of these teams’ stays may be short lived, but winning games you’re supposed to is still important. Nebraska did that by beating Lindenwood and Florida A&M big at home.
6) Minnesota (+8)
W vs Bethune Cookman, UTSA
Minnesota doesn’t get to taste a winning streak very often lately. Gotta let them enjoy their fun while they still can.
7) Indiana (-3)
W vs Florida Golf Coast, Army
We’ve hit the “Hey, they won both games this week but they didn’t look very dominant doing it” section. Two wins is good news especially when one is sub-150 in KenPom. Two wins by less than 10 points doesn’t inspire a ton of confidence though.
8) Illinois (-3)
W vs Eastern Illinois, Oakland
Yes, Illinois won by larger margins than Indiana but the opponents were weaker. Two wins is expected this early on though.
9) Penn State (+4)
W vs Delaware St, Lehigh
The last undefeated team will go above all the teams with a loss this week. Those are the rules this early in the season.
10) Wisconsin (-4)
W vs Arkansas St. L vs #9 Tennessee
I cannot truly fault Wisconsin for losing to a top-10 team, even in Madison. The Badgers took their other game and won by 29 to a decent Arkansas St team.
11) Ohio State (-4)
W vs Oakland. L vs #15 Texas A&M
Again, I can’t fault a team for losing to a quality opponent like Texas A&M (16 in KenPom) at home. I can fault OSU for winning only by 6 to winless Oakland.
12) Michigan State (-10)
L vs James Madison. W vs Southern Indiana
Michigan St lost it’s head and blew it against James Madison. Free throws are fundamental and a team of stars couldn’t prevail in game 1. With so many expectations, this really knocked MSU off its block.
13) Rutgers (-3)
L vs Princeton (N). W vs Boston U, Bryant
Another team to get punched in the mouth at the start, Rutgers already has a loss, though not at Jersey Mike’s Arena (was more intimidating when it was the RAC). At least Rutgers didn’t let the loss to Princeton spiral.
14) Maryland (-11)
W vs Mount St Mary’s. L vs Davidson (N), UAB (N)
These two losses in three games are tough for a team that brought back so much talent from upperclassmen. With Maryland’s Gavitt matchup being at Villanova, it could be 3 straight losses for the Terps if they’re not careful.