Table of Contents
College basketball isn’t like other sports. Rarely do we get dynasties like in professional sports, there isn’t a crop of programs that are expected to compete each year like college football, and even the blue bloods have down years. You could argue it’s the most equal playing field in the four major sports due to the nature of the NCAA Tournament and how difficult it is to dominate an entire regular season plus the tournament. But this year, something feels especially off. Ranked teams are dropping like flies, with higher-ranked squads losing with more frequency. The #1 and #2 seeds have lost three times in the same week this season, which seems crazy. Each week, we’ll go over the biggest losses to determine if these teams stink, or if they just had an off night.
Upsets from 1/29-2/5
1/30/23: #13 Iowa State – 77 Texas Tech – 80
I’m torn on the Cyclones. They’ve been a true Jekyll and Hyde team, beating solid squads like Kansas, Texas, and Kansas State, but losing to some questionable teams in Missouri and Oklahoma State. The game against Texas Tech was simply an off game, and they proved it by spanking a top-ten Kansas team just days later.
Verdict: Off Night.
2/1/23: #2 Tennessee – 54 Florida – 67
I won’t bury the lead on this one. The Tennessee Volunteers are fraudulent. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. They were ranked #2 for this game, and I don’t even know how they got there after losses to Colorado (!), Kentucky, and Arizona. The blowout loss to Florida was the icing on the cake for me, I’m ready to call this team out. They currently sit at #6 in the rankings, which is generous, but as we discussed earlier, it’s a down year for a lot of teams, so those shiny rankings in front of some of these programs could be fool’s gold to the casual fan.
Verdict: Tennessee STINKS.
2/4/23: #1 Purdue – 74 #21 Indiana – 79
This is where it gets interesting. The Purdue Boilermakers, led by odds-on Wooden Award favorite Zach Edey, are a good basketball team on paper. They have a dominant big man, solid shooting, and can defend much of what opposing teams throw at them. Their one Achilles heel seems to be literally everyone surrounding Zach Edey. If he doesn’t get help, this team cannot win. Edey did all he could against the Hoosiers, piling on 33 points with 18 boards. One, I repeat, one other player on Purdue scored over 10 points. When his supporting cast struggles, Edey can’t win every game singlehandedly, no matter how dominant he is. He may be the best player in the country right now, but you can’t win a game 1 on 5. It happened once, and it’s going to happen again, likely in March.
Verdict: Purdue stinks.