The Bears reign supreme in our daily rankings after the Boilermakers went down on Thursday night
Purdue moved to No. 1 in the Associated Press Top 25 on Monday for the first time in school history. We now know the Boilermakers will not remain there next Monday because they lost 70-68 at unranked Rutgers on Thursday night.
“When you go on the road, you gotta be 10 points better than somebody, because if you allow it to be close, crazy things can happen,” said Purdue coach Matt Painter. “Obviously, that was a once-in-a-lifetime shot, but we allowed it to be close.”
This surprising development — Purdue closed as a 13.5-point favorite after it was announced that Rutgers standout Geo Baker, a double-digit scorer, would not play because of the flu — obviously complicates things for the CBS Sports Top 25 And 1. I could simply elevate Duke back to No. 1. But does Duke really deserve to be No. 1 when the Blue Devils just lost to an Ohio State team that previously lost to a Florida team that just lost to Texas Southern? Another option for No. 1 is UCLA, but the Bruins have been pounded by two-loss Gonzaga. Yet another option for No. 1 is Villanova, but the Wildcats have lost to that UCLA team that got pounded by Gonzaga — plus the Purdue team that just lost to a short-handed Rutgers team that entered the game ranked 98th at KenPom.
None of those schools are ideal options for No. 1.
So I decided to reward perfection and jump Baylor to No. 1 in Friday morning’s updated CBS Sports Top 25 And 1 daily college basketball rankings. Scott Drew’s Bears are the reigning national champions and currently undefeated with double-digit victories over Michigan State, Stanford and Arizona State. it’s not the most-impressive 8-0 start in the history of college basketball, but it is a start that’s devoid of losses and will be undeniably great if Baylor improves to 9-0 Sunday with a win over Villanova. Assuming that happens, the Bears will obviously move to No. 1 in Monday’s AP Top 25, and deservedly so. So consider this me getting ahead of the curve. And if Baylor instead falls to Villanova on Sunday, well, I’ll just sit down Monday morning and reevaluate things like I always do.
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