It wasn't long after Duke routed Davidson on Friday at Cameron Indoor Stadium when several people started tweeting me about the Blue Devils' place in the Top 25 (and one). I have them ranked fifth; they're fourth in the Associated Press and Coaches polls. So this was interpreted by some as proof of my bias or ignorance or something.
Such is the case with ranking things publicly, I guess.
There's always somebody anxious to call you biased and/or ignorant.
That said, here's the truth: there's really not much difference between being fourth or fifth in a national ranking posted in November, and the reason I have Duke fifth as opposed to fourth is merely because I went to Kansas last month and fell in love with the talent Bill Self has assembled. It's as simple as that. Had I instead gone to Duke and seen Jabari Parker and Rodney Hood up close, I might've fallen for Duke instead. But whatever. It's not a big deal or real difference, either way; I can't stress that enough. Regardless, the Blue Devils' impressive performance in their season-opener -- they beat a respectable opponent 111-77 -- brought attention to how I've "underrated" Duke in some eyes, and more than one reader was surprised when I didn't jump Mike Krzyzewski's team over KU (and perhaps others) when I updated the Top 25 (and one) on Saturday morning.
But that's just not how I do things.
And that's really the point of this post.
Yes, I will be updating the Top 25 (and one) on Sunday nights and on each morning during the regular season, and I think it'll be fun. But I'm not going to overreact to every single game and change my opinions drastically based on how a team performs in a particular 40 minutes. Needless to say, schools will usually drop with bad losses and rise with good wins. But you'll almost never see me punish a team for winning, meaning I was never going to jump the Blue Devils above the schools I have ahead of them as long as the schools I have ahead of them also won, which is what actually happened this weekend.
Then Louisville won on Saturday.
Then Kentucky won again on Sunday.
So the order of my top five, for better or worse, remains as it was in the preseason.
The good news?
The good news is that this Kansas/Duke debate (if we can even call it that) will be settled (at least for now) at the United Center in Chicago on Tuesday. That's when the Jayhawks and Blue Devils play each other. I'll be there. And I'll adjust the rankings afterward, if necessary.
Here's the latest Top 25 (and one):
(Click this link to view each team's previous ranking, recent results, future schedule, etc.)
- Kentucky (2-0)
- Louisville (1-0)
- Michigan State (1-0)
- Kansas (1-0)
- Duke (1-0)
- Arizona (1-0)
- Florida (1-0)
Oklahoma State(1-0) Ohio State(1-0)
- Michigan (1-0)
- North Carolina (1-0)
- Syracuse (1-0)
- VCU (1-0)
- Wisconsin (1-0)
- Memphis (0-0)
- Oregon (1-0)
- Notre Dame (2-0)
- Virginia (1-0)
- UCLA (1-0)
- Connecticut (1-0)
- Gonzaga (1-0)
- Tennessee (0-0)
- Marquette (1-0)
- Wichita State (1-0)
- Baylor (1-0)
- Creighton (1-0)