College basketball weekly preview: Week nine
Monday, Dec. 31st
Seeing how this article is posted on Tuesday, that should let you know there was no games of importance played. That’s probably the best way to ring out the year, as we all look ahead for a better 2019.
Tuesday, Jan. 1st
Notre Dame versus Virginia Tech
After Clemson destroyed the Fighting Irish in the CFB playoff last weekend, the Notre Dame basketball team will look to lift the spirits of their fans. A big win over a top 25 opponent will do it. Can they actually win? Or will Virginia Tech continue their winning ways and build themselves a better resume?
Marquette versus St. John’s
Marquette is continuously winning games and proving they are ready to be one of the top teams in the nation. They have the tough task of taking on St. John’s, who have just lost their first game of the season against Seton Hall last week. If St. John’s does manage to rebound from their loss and beat Marquette, they will likely be featured in next week’s rankings.
Wednesday, Jan. 2nd
Texas Tech versus West Virginia
Texas Tech needs this win in order to stay relevant in the top 25. After starting off strong with an 11-0 record, they dropped their first game against Duke. Though it wasn’t a bad loss, it still hurts Texas Tech because of their current strength of schedule. A conference win would be a win for their resume.
Northwestern versus Michigan State
Michigan State has played several smaller schools recently and they will treat this game against Northwestern as a warm up for their top 25 encounter with Ohio State on Saturday.
For Northwestern, it’s about proving they can compete with the best teams in their conference, as more than half of them are already ranked.
Oklahoma versus Kansas
Oklahoma is one of the last teams in the top 25, but they are looking to take advantage of the Big 12 with a huge win over their best team in Kansas.
Kansas let one get away from them against Arizona Stat,e which pushed them out from the top spot, but they are looking for their chance to jump back into the top five.
Nevada versus Utah State
Nevada might give Kansas that chance if they don’t take care of Utah State. Utah State isn’t going to be an easy game for Nevada. If they want a chance at the top spot, they need to be able to win this game. Utah State is a good team, but Nevada is better and it’s time to prove that.
Thursday, Jan. 3rd
North Carolina State versus Miami (FL)
This may or may not be a challenge for NC State. It all depends on which Miami team decides to show up and play. I do think NC State will continue to prove they belong in the ACC with the rest, but can Miami actually pull off the upset here?
Penn State versus Michigan
Talk about an upset? Let’s watch and see if Penn State can be the first team to knock off Michigan this season. It’s a much needed win for Penn State. Michigan is still trying to earn themselves the No. 1 spot, which could be possible if they win both of their games this week.
Iowa versus Purdue
Iowa is slowly falling out the top 25 despite still winning games, but it’s all about the strength of schedule. The Hawkeyes don’t have many impressive wins yet.
The way Purdue has been playing this season, it’s not that much of an impressive win, but it is a conference win Iowa needs after losing to Ohio State and Wisconsin earlier this season.
Wisconsin versus Minnesota
Wisconsin got upset last week by a 6-6 Western Kentucky team and they have the biggest question on them as a top 25 team. This conference game against Minnesota will be a game Wisconsin uses to get back on track. Or maybe it’s a game that results in a Minnesota win and them landing in the top 25.
Friday, Jan. 4th
After all the excitement taking place before Friday, we will need a break from all the important games as we look ahead to the weekend.
Saturday, Jan. 5th
Michigan State versus Ohio State
This is possibly the biggest game of the week, as we will see two of the best in Big Ten tip off in an epic showdown for the first time this season. It means a lot to both teams, as they are both looking to climb up in the rankings. So who do you think will win? Spartans or Buckeyes?
North Carolina versus Pittsburgh
North Carolina looks to continue to take advantage of the weaker opponents, like a Pittsburgh team. Although, Pitt isn’t a super weak team. In fact, they have the ability to beat the Tar Heels, but can they? I think the game means more to North Carolina than it does for Pittsburgh, and that’s why I give them the edge.
Virginia Tech versus Boston College
Virginia Tech finds themselves in another nail-biter this week as they look to remain a top team in the ACC. It’s very possible for Tech to win both games, but Boston College has been a decent team so far this season. We could be seeing Tech lose one of the two games.
Florida State versus Virginia
This is another one of those bigger games of the week. We have a top five Virginia team facing a top 15 Florida State team. This game could go one of two ways. First, Virginia remains undefeated and stays No. 1 in our version of rankings. The second way is Florida State knocks of Virginia, dropping them out the top five and moving themselves into the top 10. So let’s see who wins it.
Kansas versus Iowa State
Kansas will have a chance to remain in the top 10 regardless of their results against Oklahoma. If they manage to win both games, you can most certainly believe they will be back into the top five. Imagine if Nevada, Michigan and Virginia all win their games this week. Who will be left out? Tennessee or Duke?
Sunday, Dec. 30th
Indiana versus Michigan
Maybe Michigan makes it an easier decision and doesn’t win both their games. Do they get jumped? I do believe this is one of the biggest games of the season for the Michigan Wolverines, as they try to prove they are the champions of the Big Ten. Indiana will not walk away silently though, as we saw how much they fought in their loss against Duke.
Iowa versus Nebraska
After playing against an unranked Purdue team and trying to prove themselves, Iowa will have another task of facing Nebraska. This is a game where two top 25 teams play each other to try to keep their hopes alive. If Iowa does beat Purdue as expected, they will still be in the top 25, unless Nebraska does beat them. I think the loser of this game will have a tough time staying in the top 25. But they may also be in luck, depending on what happens with the rest of the teams on the bubble.
So let’s see where we end up this week. Will we see a new No. 1 team in the rankings, or will it be much of the same? Comment on which games you think are important and who might be on upset alert!