Polls: #6 in AP/#7 in Coaches

Submitted by MH20 on February 11th, 2019 at 12:38 PM

AP Poll

Coaches Poll

Michigan jumped Nevada to #6 in the AP Poll but stayed just behind the Wolf Pack in the Coaches/SID/Intern Poll and remain #7. MSU fell to #11 in the AP and #12 in the Coaches.

Tennessee, Duke, Gonzaga, UVA, and UK are 1-5 in each.

Other notable teams (AP/Coaches):

UNC: #8/#8

Purdue: #12/#11

Nova: #13/#13

Wisconsin: #20/#23

Iowa: #21/#17

Maryland: #24/#25



February 11th, 2019 at 1:55 PM ^

It's not just the experts that love Duke.  The computers do too.  They just won by ten on the road at the team that is unquestionably a 1 seed right now - easily the most impressive win of the season, except maybe their game against Kentucky. 

They're the best college basketball team since the Anthony Davis Kentucky team that won it all.

I hate that it's Duke, but people need to take off their blinders and accept that this is just an insanely good basketball team, it is not a creation of the media or whatever people want to complain about.


February 11th, 2019 at 1:58 PM ^

Wait a minute....?   This is not how things work.  Neither ESPN nor anybody else is going to talk about this Duke team for more than 10 seconds if they don't win it all.

If they win the national championship we can get into all that.  College basketball teams are not crowned all-time greats on February 11.  I don't care how great they look right now, if they lose to a #8 seed in the second round they are not all time great anything. 


February 11th, 2019 at 2:20 PM ^

The randomness of a single elimination tournament does not change the greatness of a team...much.  To me, at least.

To pretend like the 17-1 Patriots weren't among the top 5 teams of all time because a Giants WR caught a ridiculous helmet catch such that they'd be considered 50 something-th of all time behind every Super Bowl champ is ridiculous to me.  One crazy play does not knock a team from possibly the best all time to 50th.

My definition is about who would likely win in a 7 game series, so as to remove most of the randomness.

This Duke team, at full strength, would likely beat every team in the last ten years in a 7 game series save for maybe the Anthony Davis team, last year's Villanova team and/or the 2015 UK team.

The numbers back this assertion up.  Their kenpom is historically good.  Only that 2015 team finished with a higher kenpom (but I will knock them down slightly for not winning it) than what Duke has right now. Most champs in the past ten years are well behind where they are now.

Plus, you know, they have incredible players.


February 11th, 2019 at 2:28 PM ^

I believe the 17-1 Patriots team is completely disqualified from the all time greatness conversation based on their failure to win the Super Bowl.

In my opinion, regardless of the format of the post-season, winning the relevant championship of whatever league/division you are in is the threshold to entering or existing in the conversation.

This years Alabama football team was the latest "best team there ever was" until they got their face stomped and now they are just the answer to the question "whose ass did Clemson kick that one year?"


February 11th, 2019 at 3:47 PM ^

Neither perspective is "right or "wrong."  It is subjective.  It depends on how much you value you put on championships.  Perhaps my perspective would be different if college basketball was decided in a "seven game series" but it isn't so why flip the script like that?  If Duke is the best team they will win the title.  If not they can kick rocks.


February 11th, 2019 at 4:54 PM ^

Your argument is asinine.

If the best team always won, there would be no point in playing the games in the first place.

You cannot seriously believe that UMBC was a better basketball team than Virginia.  Luck plays a significant role in sports, just as it does in life.

The team that wins six games in the NCAA Tournament will be tournament champion.  That doesn't mean that they're the best team; it does mean that they have the most significant accomplishment of the season.  The latter does not imply the former.


February 11th, 2019 at 5:28 PM ^

Blah.  That is a cop out.  Analytics are good fodder but games are played between the lines.  We were the "better team" over OSU by any metric going into The Game last year. Sure glad we had that going for us, so the actual outcome didn't matter.  Because we were better!  Phew.

The best team wins the title. The rest lose.

BTB grad

February 11th, 2019 at 3:26 PM ^

This. Michigan made the national title last year because their side of the bracket played out very favorably; the seeds of the teams they played before #1 Villanova: 14 Montana, 6 Houston, 7 Texas A&M, 9 Florida St, and 11 Loyola. Michigan being the national runner-up does not mean they were the 2nd best team in the country. We just got super lucky.


February 11th, 2019 at 3:38 PM ^

We were the second best team in the country last year.  A team can do nothing about the format of the post-season, they can only win their games.  Texas AM was better than UNC last year, as is evidenced by them beating UNC by like 25 points when they played each other.  So, our win over a team like Texas AM does not "mean less" than beating UNC because AM destroyed UNC.  Teams are only as good as they play when the chips are down.  That is what makes March Madness the best thing in sports.   



February 11th, 2019 at 6:29 PM ^

Response to ijohnb:

If the better team always wins the game, why did Wisconsin beat Michigan in Madison but vice versa in Ann Arbor?  Why isn't every series a sweep?

Probability and randomness rule our lives.  It's why UMBC can beat Virginia even though they were not better than Virginia.  If they played that game 100 times, Virginia would probably win about 95, and that's because UMBC was a really good 16-seed.  Most 16 seeds have about a 1-2% chance to win.

The best teams do as much as possible to minimize the role of luck through skill and preparation, but you cannot remove it completely.

Michigan's easiest game left on the schedule, per KenPom, is home vs. Nebraska.  Suppose we tried a new format for the NCAA Tournament: we'll decree that either Michigan or Nebraska will be crowned champion.  If Michigan can win six straight games at home against Nebraska, they'll win the NCAAs.  Otherwise, Nebraska wins.

Who ya got?


I'll make it easier for you: Michigan's chances to beat Nebraska at home are nearly identical to their chances to win last year's first-round game against 14-seed Montana in Wichita.  So, Nebraska is basically a 14 seed after you adjust for the home court advantage.


6 consecutive wins over a 14 seed?  Michigan's an obvious lock, right?  Probably 10-1 in their favor?  Bet the house!


Nebraska is favored in that scenario, nearly 2:1.


This isn't some fancy-math, analytics mumbo-jumbo.  This is simple mathematical truth: if an outcome happens 84% of the time, the chance that it will happen six times in a row is 35.1%.  Michigan is an 84% favorite against Nebraska.

Every single team goes into the NCAA Tournament as an underdog to win it.  People dramatically underestimate how much of a role random chance plays in the outcome.  It is silly to say that the best team will be the champion.  All you can say is that the best team is the most likely champion prior to the tournament starting.  Once it begins, luck takes over.


February 11th, 2019 at 12:48 PM ^

Gonna be interesting to see what happens if UNC beats UVA tonite.   We play @PSU and MD and UNC also plays Wake.    I can see voters push them past us if they look good and we are at all close in either game.   How silly would that be?

Mike Damone

February 11th, 2019 at 1:44 PM ^

I think that the NCAA and the Gonzaga and Nevada ADs should call "Omaha", and schedule a game between the two in February.  Can call it a break from playing the Dog Shit Tacos they have been facing over the past weeks.  Winner gets to be a #2 seed with a chance of being #1 based on how they play out.  Loser gets a max #5 seed.

Watching them both roll through their schedules is a joke.  It is not even competitive basketball.


February 11th, 2019 at 3:12 PM ^

The lack of a Gonzaga/Nevada game is puzzling.  Everyone knew back last summer that these schools would be very good.  A game between those 2 scheduled some time in February would be pretty fun viewing. 

Bracketbusters, when it existed, was a nice thing because it facilitated games such as Gonzaga vs Nevada (or Buffalo vs. Wofford). 

Bracketbusters is gone now.  So those ADs need to do some work (e.g., finding a way to re-arrange scheduled WCC and MWC conference games) to get the game on the schedule.  But even if it is more work, those ADs need to DO it.  They're doing their hoops squads a dis-service in not making the extra effort.


February 11th, 2019 at 12:55 PM ^

If UM lost 3 in a row, including one at home to a shitty Indiana team, we would be unranked.  Fuck that shit!   

Edit:   I know it was spread over 2 weeks that they lost but c’mon!   


February 11th, 2019 at 1:55 PM ^

Understood.  But if UM lost to Indiana and Illinois they would be unranked.  We beat all three of those teams by double digits and yet are somehow only five spots in front of them.  Fuck that!  If UM throttles PSU and Maryland they will be rewarded with a #6 ranking Im sure.  Lose to Maryland and I guarantee we’re behind State.  Its shit!

Perkis-Size Me

February 11th, 2019 at 1:00 PM ^

Plenty of opportunities to prove ourselves and still move up to a potential one seed. Kentucky and Tennessee still have to play each other twice. Duke has to go to UNC, and UVa has to still play Louisville twice. 

And then we get MSU and Maryland twice. Will be tough but it could happen.