Update: As predicted, the Seminoles climbed significantly in the AP Poll, and are now No. 17. No team gained more spots than Florida State, even though the ’Noles are just behind the Louisville team that they just beat. FSU also rose five spots in the Coaches Poll, to No. 19— just ahead of the Cardinals.
Coming into this week, a split for Florida State basketball would have qualified as a success. A road date with Syracuse and a home matchup against No. 16 Louisville are not exactly contests through which any squad tends to emerge unblemished. But the No. 22 Seminoles did just that, blowing out the Orange in New York before returning home to dispose of the No. 16 Cardinals in overtime.
So let’s begin this week’s glance at the polls a little differently— from the bottom up. No. 23 Buffalo played one game, and beat Central Michigan. Yawn. No. 24 Maryland also battled just a single squad, topping Nebraska in Lincoln. Okay. And No. 25 Cincinnati triumphed at Memphis before dropping a home contest to No. 12 Houston. There’s nothing wrong with any of those results, but I mention them to illustrate the point that the ’Noles are not going to get passed in this week’s rankings by a team below them. The only thing FSU is going to do after this week is rise, and that’s well deserved.
But how far? Once again, we’ll look at teams ranked 10th and below in the AP Poll. There wasn’t a ton of carnage ahead of Florida State in the rankings.
- No. 10 Marquette lost a home game to unranked St. John’s but then bounced back to defend its home court against No. 14 Villanova. That’s not a bad week, but the Golden Eagles should probably drop a touch.
- No. 11 Virginia Tech played just once last week, falling on the road against an unranked Clemson squad. Coming up short against the Tigers is not a bad loss, but that’s two straight defeats for the Hokies, so they should definitely dip.
- The 12th-ranked Houston Cougars deserve to rise after winning at UCF and vs. No. 25 Cincinnati. The Coogs (yes, that’s how they spell it) took care of business.
- Then there’s Kansas, which came into the week ranked 13th. Prior to a home triumph over Oklahoma State, the Jayhawks lost at unranked Kansas State. Kansas’ road woes have gone from predictable to laughable, as the blue-blood program still has just one true road win this season.
- The No. 14 Villanova Wildcats shouldn’t move too far, after beating Creighton and then losing at No. 10 Marquette. But keep in mind the previous review of the Golden Eagles, a team that has certainly seen its stock fall. The same could prove true for the Wildcats.
- Purdue, at No. 15, stayed hot, beating Nebraska in West Lafayette for its eighth-straight W. That bodes quite well for the Seminoles, who have a win over the Boilermakers on their record. I still can’t believe that Purdue lost to Notre Dame, but that’s college hoops, which hates logic.
- No. 16 Louisville picked up a nice road win vs. VT but then lost to FSU. That’s far from a bad loss, but it’s still a defeat.
- Iowa State should descend from its spot at No. 17. The Cyclones won at Oklahoma, which is a solid victory, but they then failed in a home matchup against unranked TCU.
- Bump the 18th-ranked Texas Tech Red Raiders, who bested West Virginia at home and the Sooners on the road.
- No. 19 Wisconsin is difficult to punish, as the Badgers beat a formidable Minnesota team in Minneapolis before losing to No. 7 Michigan in Ann Arbor.
- No. 20 Iowa and No. 21 LSU went a combined 4-0 on the week— although none of those victories came over ranked opponents. And remember that FSU beat LSU.
So that makes it rather tricky for Florida State, as no team ahead of the Seminoles really had a terrible week. Still, there were enough scuffles that, combined with FSU’s five-straight ACC wins, should see the ’Noles back into the top 20.
KenPom has Florida State ranked 22nd, while the NET Rankings have the Seminoles 25th, two places ahead of the ever-daunting Wofford Terriers.