South Carolina is the last remaining undefeated team in the country after handling previously undefeated Louisiana State on Sunday and once again received every first-place vote in the Associated Press Top 25 poll.
The other big news was that UConn dropped back-to-back games for the first time in 30 years while Indiana took over sole possession of first place in the Big Ten with a win over Iowa.
There are eight matchups between ranked teams this week so there could be major movement in the national polls and in the conference races.
It starts on Monday with the sportsbook listing visiting Indiana as a 5½-point favorite against Ohio State and Texas heading to Iowa State as a 1½-point favorite. The Duke-Virginia Tech, Michigan-Indiana, Utah-Arizona, Southern California-Stanford, UConn-Villanova and Colorado-Arizona games are also worth keeping an eye on.
Looking at the women’s college basketball betting lines, South Carolina (+160) is favored in the odds to win the national title. Stanford is next at +400 followed by UConn at +600.
South Carolina, Indiana, Stanford and UConn were on the top line when the NCAA Women’s Basketball Committee revealed its first breakdown of the top 16 seeds on Friday. UConn figures to drop off from being a No. 1 seed after the loss to Marquette.
Flexing Their Muscles
Top-ranked South Carolina used a similar script to emerge victorious in two of its toughest tests during the regular season.
When the Gamecocks headed north to take down UConn, they outrebounded UConn 42-30 and were +15 in offensive rebounds. Aliyah Boston, listed by the Las Vegas odds as one of the front-runners to win another national player of the year candidate, and Kamilla Cardoso combined for 15 offensive rebounds.
When LSU came to town on Sunday, it was more of the same.
Boston and Cardoso combined for 32 points and 22 rebounds in an 88-64 win over then-No. 3 Louisiana State.
No. 1 South Carolina hands No. 3 LSU its first loss of the season in dominant fashion. pic.twitter.com/xv18CZZ2NA
— ESPN (@espn) February 12, 2023
LSU’s Angel Reese came into the game averaging 23.5 points and 15.8 rebounds but finished with just 16 points and four rebounds.
South Carolina is 5-0 this season against teams ranked in the Top 25 in the AP poll and does not face another ranked squad for the rest of the regular season.
This is the 34th straight week that South Carolina sits atop the AP poll. Only Louisiana Tech (36 weeks) and UConn (51 weeks) have longer streaks.
There are six teams in the Top 25 in the latest Associated Press poll that moved up by at least spots and three of them hail from the Pac-12.
Stanford went from sixth to third and Utah from seventh to fourth after losses by LSU, UConn, and Iowa.
The biggest move has been made by Colorado, which went up four positions to No. 21. UCLA jumped up from 18th to 16th. Officially, Southern California went up just one spot to No. 25. In reality, there were four other teams outside the top 25 who received more votes than USC last week.
Utah has won seven straight games, the longest active winning streak in the Pac-12, to move into a tie for first place with Stanford.
Colorado is just a game back with Arizona and UCLA just three games out of first place.
There will be some movement this weekend when Utah plays at Arizona, USC travels to meet Stanford on Friday, and Colorado and Arizona square off on Sunday.
Utah went from $368M to $686M as a Pac-12 member. https://t.co/IFF1UFTQMv
— Big Ten football scheduling meeting in Feb 2023 (@Genetics56) February 13, 2023
A Rare Occurrence
Few statistics in not just women’s college basketball, but in all of college sports can match UConn’s run of not losing back-to-back games since the final two contests of the 1992-93 season.
That streak came to an end when the Huskies followed up a tough home loss to No. 1 South Carolina by losing at unranked Marquette 59-52. The rare losing streak almost hit three games before the Huskies responded late in a 67–59 win at Georgetown.
This week could be interesting when the Huskies host Creighton, currently third in the Big East standings, on Wednesday before a huge road matchup against Villanova.
If both UConn and Villanova take care of business on Wednesday, the Wildcats can move into a tie for first place in the Big East with a win.
The key for UConn is when the Huskies get leading scorers Azzi Fudd and Caroline Ducharme back on the court. They have missed 31 out of a total of 52 games this season and there is no timetable on when they will be returning to action.
Hoosiers Come Up Big
The clash of Big Ten heavyweights did not disappoint as Grace Berger had a season-high 26 points to go with nine rebounds and six assists to lead Indiana to an 87-78 win over visiting Iowa.
Iowa guard Caitlin Clark had 35 points and 10 assists. However, she also had eight of Iowa’s 18 turnovers.
Indiana outscored Iowa 22-12 from the foul line as the Hawkeyes shot just 53% from the line. The Hoosiers lead the Big Ten standings by one game.
The teams will meet again on Feb. 26. Before that matchup, there are still showdowns against ranked Ohio State and Michigan teams.
Team of the Week
Beating the No. 3 team in the country with relative ease gives the top-ranked Gamecocks the nod here.
The Gamecocks have won 31 games in a row and could be the deepest team in the country with 11 players averaging more than 10 minutes per game and two others at 9.9 and 9.6 minutes.
South Carolina leads the country in field goal percentage defense, blocked shots per game, rebound margin and scoring margin.
Player of the Week
Maddy Siegrist, Villanova Wildcats
The leading scorer in the country took it to a new level the last time out with 50 points in a win over Seton Hall.
Siegrist has scored at least 20 points in each game this season and is putting up 29.1 points and 9.4 rebounds per game. She is more than just a volume shooter, connecting on career-high marks of 53.6% from the field, 41% on 3-pointers and 86.1% from the foul line.
Game of the Week
Duke vs Virginia Tech
- Date, time (TV): Thursday, Feb. 16, 7:00 p.m. ET (ACC NX)
It is pretty sad that this huge showdown in the ACC is not on television.
Both teams have won four straight games as Duke currently leads the ACC by one game with Virginia Tech just two games back.
Elizabeth Kitley averages a double-double for Virginia Tech (18 points, 10.8 rebounds) while Celeste Taylor leads a balanced Duke offense with 11.8 points per game.
When the teams met last month, a 10-0 run in the fourth quarter was enough to lift Duke to an 11-point win at home. Shayeann Day-Wilson led the Blue Devils with 18 points while Kitley missed eight of her nine fieldgoal attempts,