Last of the Unbeatens: Seven teams begin 2014 without a loss
Seven schools enter league play without a loss, but that number could quickly drop with conference play beginning.
Welcome back to our newest feature, “Last of the Unbeatens,” where we run through each of the undefeated teams remaining in the country – as well as where they might suffer their first loss.
We have two fewer teams on this list than a week ago, as Villanova loss at fellow unbeaten Syracuse on Saturday, and Toledo suffered its first loss at Kansas earlier this week.
Seven teams remain as most of the teams begin conference play, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see the group dwindle before next week.
What they’ve done recently: Arizona hasn’t played since we last updated this list, with the Wildcats having 10 days off between its win over Northern Arizona and Thursday’s home battle with Washington State. Sean Miller’s troops enter 2014 as the Pac-12 favorite.
Next game: Jan. 2 vs. Washington State
Next possible loss: Jan. 9 at UCLA
What they’ve done recently: The Orange made a statement over the weekend, coming back from an early 25-7 deficit to eventually defeat Villanova by 16. They followed that up with a 22-point win over Eastern Michigan. Syracuse’s first season in the ACC could be a fruitful one.
Next game: Jan. 4 vs. Miami
Next possible loss: Jan. 11 vs. North Carolina
Ohio State (14-0)
What they’ve done recently: The Buckeyes continue to roll. They handled Louisiana-Monroe by 40 last Friday in their final tuneup before conference play. And on Tuesday, Ohio State went on the road and knocked off Purdue to get off to a 1-0 start in the Big Ten. There’s a showdown looming, though.
Next game: Jan. 4 vs. Nebraska
Next possible loss: Jan. 7 at Michigan State
What they’ve done recently: The Badgers haven’t exactly been tested in the past three weeks, getting a 14-day layoff before welcoming Prairie View A&M to town and beating the Panthers by 37. Up next is league play, heading on the road for the first time in a month.
Next game: Jan. 2 at Northwestern
Next possible loss: Jan. 2 at Northwestern
Wichita State (13-0)
What they’ve done recently: The Shockers got past a mini-test on Sunday, holding off Davidson by 11 to finish non-conference play with a sterling 13-0 record. Some of the non-league wins have lost their luster, but victories over Saint Louis, Tennessee, Alabama and BYU form a solid resume.
Next game: Jan. 2 at Southern Illinois
Next possible loss: Jan. 11 at Missouri State
What they’ve done recently: It hasn’t been the easiest road for the Ducks through non-league play, overcoming several close wins that looked like sure losses in the waning minutes. Pac-12 play begins this week, and the Ducks don’t get any favors: road games at Utah and Colorado.
Next game: Jan. 2 at Utah
Next possible loss: Jan. 2 at Utah
Iowa State (12-0)
What they’ve done recently: The Cyclones went to the Diamond Head Classic and handled their business, getting three wins over George Mason, Akron and Boise State. They then returned home to throttle Northern Illinois on Tuesday. Where does Iowa State stack up in the Big 12? We’ll find out soon.
Next game: Jan. 4 at Texas Tech
Next possible loss: Jan. 7 vs. Baylor
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