Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Big 12, MVC have strong week in rankings
By Evan Kaplan, ESPN Stats & Info
The Big 12 continues to close on the Big Ten, and the Missouri Valley Conference moved up two spots in ESPN Stats and Information’s weekly college basketball rankings.
For a complete recap of how we rank the conferences, click here.
The computer portion of this week’s rankings is once again comprised entirely of the BPI, ESPN’s new College Basketball Power Index. The BPI team rating takes into account the game score, where the game was played, the pace of the game and whether any of the team’s top five players was missing. For a complete explanation on the College BPI, click here.
After dropping two spots in last week’s rankings, the Missouri Valley Conference is back in the No. 8 spot this week. The conference’s overall computer rating remained constant but Wichita State is now the eighth-rated team in the nation according the BPI, moving up three spots in the past week.
It was the MVC’s human bonus that saw a big jump this week, increasing from 2.3 percent to 4.3 percent. Wichita State is now ranked in the top 15 in each human poll and Creighton returned to the Top 25 for the first time in three weeks.
The Big 12 has been gaining on the Big Ten and is now less than five points behind the top conference in the rankings. The Big 12 is the only conference with three teams in the top 10 of each human poll. Kansas and Missouri have been ranked in the top 10 for each of the past eight weeks, while Baylor returned to the top 10 after a one-week absence.
The Big Ten continues to have five teams ranked in the Top 25 but only one in the top nine. After reaching the number three spot in each poll during the week of Feb. 6, Ohio State is now 10th in the AP poll and 11th in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. The Buckeyes have lost three of their last five games and two of their last three at home.
The Ohio Valley remained in the No. 22 spot of the rankings but saw the biggest increase of any conference this week, jumping 4.8 points from last week’s rating. Murray State is the only Ohio Valley Conference team in the top 150 of the BPI.