In College Football Playoff and college basketball rankings, losses matter
The Top 25 (and one) always looks at which teams have bad losses
The College Football Playoff committee, by putting Alabama in above Ohio State on Sunday, reminded college football fans that losses matter. It's not all about wins. Losses matter too. So count me among those pleased with their decision -- because I've been yelling for years, to any college basketball fan who would listen, that losses absolutely matter. You can't just ignore them.
It's a philosophy reflected in the CBS Sports Top 25 (and one) -- proof being that not a single team I have ranked has lost a game to a team I have unranked. That suggests I'm more interested in teams that consistently win games they're supposed to win than I am in teams that are sporadic from week to week. It's why I have two-loss Baylor ranked but don't have two-loss Saint Mary's ranked. Baylor has no bad losses. But Saint Mary's has lost twice to teams that haven't been ranked at any point in this season.
Duke remains No. 1 in the Top 25 (and one). The Blue Devils are 10-0 with victories over No. 3 Michigan State, No. 9 Florida and No. 23 Texas. Their next game is Tuesday night against St. Francis (Pa.)
The complete Top 25 (and one) is below.
|1||Duke||The Blue Devils own three wins over teams (Michigan State, Florida, Texas) also in the Top 25 (and one). Marvin Bagley is averaging 22.0 points and 11.2 rebounds in 31.3 minutes per game.||--||23-5|
|2||Kansas||Bill Self has already recorded two victories over fellow Hall of Famers (John Calipari, Jim Boeheim) this season. Devonte' Graham is averaging 18.6 points and 8.0 assists in 33.6 minutes per game.||--||22-6|
|3||Michigan State||The Spartans have top-15 KenPom wins over North Carolina and Notre Dame. Their lone loss is a single-digit loss to Duke.||--||27-3|
|4||Notre Dame||Bonzie Colson finished with 13 points and nine rebounds in Sunday's win over St. Francis Brooklyn. Notre Dame's only loss is a neutral-court loss to Michigan State.||--||16-12|
|5||Wichita State||The Shockers' lone loss is a single-point loss to Notre Dame. Shaquille Morris is averaging 13.9 points and 5.4 rebounds in 22.0 minutes per game.||--||22-5|
|6||Kentucky||The Wildcats' lone loss is a single-digit loss to Kansas. Kevin Knox is averaging 16.6 points and 5.9 rebounds in 35.3 minutes per game.||--||19-9|
|7||Villanova||Six of Villanova's eight wins are double-digit victories. Mikal Bridges is averaging 17.9 points and 6.3 rebounds in 29.9 minutes per game.||--||25-3|
|8||Texas A&M||Robert Williams grabbed 14 rebounds in 25 minutes during Thursday's win over UT Rio Grande Valley. He's averaging 8.8 points and 10.0 rebounds in 22.8 minutes per game.||--||17-11|
|9||Florida||The Gators squandered a 17-point lead in Sunday's loss to Duke. Florida only scored 10 points in the final nine minutes.||--||17-11|
|10||Miami (Fla.)||The Hurricanes' perfect record features a win over Minnesota. Bruce Brown is averaging 11.7 points and 8.6 rebounds in 32.3 minutes per game.||--||19-8|
|11||North Carolina||Each of the Tar Heels' eight wins have come by double-digits. Their lone loss is a neutral-court loss to Michigan State.||--||22-7|
|12||Gonzaga||The Zags' only loss is a 2OT loss to Florida. Mark Few's team owns victories over Texas, Creighton and Ohio State.||--||26-4|
|13||Minnesota||The Golden Gophers' lone loss is a single-digit loss to Miami. Jordan Murphy has nine double-doubles in nine games.||--||15-15|
|14||Virginia||The Cavaliers have the nation's best defensive-efficiency rating. They've held four of their eight opponents to fewer than 50 points.||1||25-2|
|15||Arizona State||The Sun Devils' perfect record features wins over Xavier, Kansas State and San Diego State. Tra Holder is averaging 22.1 points, 6.0 rebounds and 5.1 assists in 35.4 minutes per game.||1||19-8|
|16||Xavier||The Musketeers' lone loss is a neutral-court loss to Arizona State. Their resume features three top-50 KenPom wins, most notably victories over Baylor and Cincinnati.||1||25-4|
|17||Cincinnati||The Bearcats' lone loss is a road loss to Xavier. Gary Clark is averaging 13.8 points and 8.0 rebounds in 23.9 minutes per game.||1||24-4|
|18||TCU||The Horned Frogs have won 13 straight games dating back to last season. Kenrich Williams is averaging 12.4 points and 10.1 rebounds in 32.3 minutes per game.||1||19-9|
|19||Baylor||The Bears' two losses are to teams (Wichita State, Xavier) ranked higher than them in the Top 25 (and one). Baylor owns wins over Creighton and Wisconsin.||1||17-11|
|20||Creighton||The Bluejays' two losses are to Gonzaga and Baylor. They led both of those games at the half.||1||19-9|
|21||West Virginia||The Mountaineers have won seven straight since losing to Texas A&M. Jevon Carter is averaging a team-high 19.0 points, 5.5 assists and 4.8 rebounds.||1||20-8|
|22||Nevada||The Wolf Pack's perfect record features wins over Rhode Island and Davidson. Caleb Martin is averaging 19.0 points and 5.4 rebounds in 30.1 minutes per game.||1||24-5|
|23||Texas||The Longhorns' two losses are OT losses to Duke and Gonzaga. Mohamed Bamba is averaging 10.3 points, 9.7 rebounds and 4.0 blocks in 27.2 minutes per game.||1||16-12|
|24||Rhode Island||The Rams' two losses are to teams (Virginia, Nevada) ranked higher than them in the Top 25 (and one). URI owns wins over Seton Hall and Providence.||1||23-4|
|25||Seton Hall||The Pirates' lone loss is a single-point loss to Rhode Island. They own wins over Texas Tech and Louisville.||1||19-9|
|26||Texas Tech||The Red Raiders' lone loss is a neutral-court loss to Seton Hall. Keenan Evans is averaging 15.9 points and 3.9 assists in 25.0 minutes per game.||1||22-6|
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