AP Ballot this week

Hey, at least Ohio State didn’t crumple under the weight of my number one ranking like Syracuse. Syracuse in fact continues to plummet following the most confusing result of the season, a 90-68 loss to the now 12-9 Seton Hall Pirates. Stunning. That much talent offering that listless a performance reminds me that Jim Boeheim has only a single national championship despite some of the greatest teams in history.

The Buckeyes meanwhile reaffirm their number one status. They put forth a beat down of biblical proportion on Purdue (12th on my ballot). Thad Matta is the most unheralded top level coach in the country. Nobody ever talks about this guy as a great coach. His worst season at OSU was his first when he went 20-12. 21-0 to start this season in a conference with three other ranked teams (plus Michigan St.) is remarkable. Imagine is his top players stayed for more than one year.

At the back end of the poll, and not just to boost G.P.A, we have Harvard. I received a pair of interview requests regarding this selection. One from Dennis Zheng who writes for the Harvard Crimson, and another Brian Kotloff from the Daily Pennsyvanian. They both wanted to understand my thoughts on including the Crimson (the only pollster to do so). More pointedly they asked, why did I pick put them in the poll.

Their high level of curiosity leaves me wondering if I’ve lost my brain, but the more I study the selection the more I like it.

Harvard at 13-3 has wins over Colorado and at Boston College plus a road win last week at George Washington. The last one piqued my interest as their leading scorer Keith Wright went 3-9 from the field scoring just seven points. A team that finds a way to win on the road against a quality opponent with its top player contributing almost nothing, that’s a team of substance.

Not top 25 related, but if you’re looking for some quality hoops in town this weekend, check out a pair of games at Reitz Arena. Friday Loyola faces nemesis Siena then Sunday against Iona. Can I have teams that end in “a” for a thousand Alex?

Here’s my ballot, have a great week..

1. Ohio State
2. Pittsburgh
3. Duke
4. Kansas
5. Texas
6. San Diego State
7. Connecticut
8. Villanova
9. Syracuse
10. BYU
11. Texas A&M
12. Purdue
13. Missouri
14. Notre Dame
15. Kentucky
16. Florida State
17. Washington
18. Wisconsin
19. Minnesota
20. Louisville
21. Florida
22. Vanderbilt
23. Illinois
24. Arizona
25. Harvard

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