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NCAAM Breakdown: Power-5 Conference Races Tightening Up

Seven Ranked Matchups on Slate This Week

What a Week it was in the College Basketball Universe

There figured to be movement in the national polls with seven games between ranked teams. Five of the top 10 ranked squads lost during the week and, as expected, there was quite the poll shakeup.

It could be more of the same this week with seven matchups featuring a pair of Top 25 teams.

NCAAM Breakdown: Power-5 Conference Races Tightening Up
NCAAM Breakdown: Power-5 Conference Races Tightening Up

Purdue remained No.1 in the Associated Press poll despite being one of those ranked teams to fall. The Boilermakers continue to be the overwhelming favorite to win the Big Ten title.

The fun this week starts with Kansas listed by the sportsbook as a 4½-point favorite against visiting Texas on Monday. On Tuesday, it is No.10 Marquette at No.21 UConn, No.24 Rutgers visiting No.18 Indiana, No.22 North Carolina State meeting up with No.8 Virginia while No.17 Texas Christian plays at No.12 Kansas State.

Looking at the Las Vegas odds, No.2 Houston (+650) is favored to win the national title. Arizona, Purdue and Tennessee are all priced at +1000 followed by Alabama (+1200) and Kansas (+1500).

Let’s check the latest college basketball news, stats, injury reports and college basketball lines. We’ve got plenty of NCAA basketball picks for you to consider.

Quite the Week for the Hoosiers

When Indiana began last week losing by 11 points at unranked Maryland, few could have expected what was coming next.

Indiana welcomed No. 1 Purdue to town and promptly handed the Boilermakers their second loss of the season.

The Hoosiers jumped all over the Boilermakers for 50 points in the first half and shut down the supporting cast of national player of the year front-runner Zach Edey.

Edey had 33 points on 15-of-19 shooting to go with 18 rebounds. However, the rest of the team had 14 field goals.

Trayce Jackson-Davis led three Indiana starters in double figures with 25 points. After that win, the college basketball odds list the Hoosiers (+1000) as second only to Purdue in the odds to win the Big Ten title.

Iowa State followed a similar script as the Cyclones rebounded from an overtime loss to Texas Tech by dispatching reigning national champion Kansas 68-53. Jaren Holmes had 15 points and Tamin Lipsey flirted with a triple-double before finishing with nine points, eight rebounds and 10 assists.

K-State, Clemson Take a Tumble

It was not a week to remember for either Kansas State or Clemson.

The Wildcats came into the week ranked ahead of rival Kansas in the Associated Press Top 25 poll. However, Kansas put up 90 points in the comfortable win. Then Kansas State lost at home to Texas 69-66 to fall five spots to No. 12 in the AP poll.

Clemson stumbled against unranked Boston College and then-No. 23 Miami as its once comfortable lead atop the ACC standings is almost gone.

Pittsburgh and Virginia are 9-3 in conference play while Clemson is sitting at 10-3. Duke, Miami and North Carolina State are all a game back in the loss column.

Clemson fell out of the top 25 after dropping the two games.

Boilermakers Still The One

When the final whistle blew on a wild week of basketball, Purdue found itself remaining on top of the rankings despite the loss to Indiana.

Houston not only moved up a spot to No. 2, but the Cougars went from trailing Purdue by 135 points in the Associated Press Top 25 poll to now trailing by just 25 points.

The big mover in the top 10 was Texas, which went from 10th to fifth while Marquette cracked the top 10.

On the other side of things, Tennessee dropped from second to sixth.

Purdue was the only team ranked in the same spot in the Associated Press poll.

Clemson was joined by Florida Atlantic and Auburn as teams falling out of the rankings while No. 22 North Carolina State, No. 23 Creighton and No. 24 Rutgers moved into the Top 25.

Cougars Roar In Rematch

There was no repeat of the late-game drama when Houston squared off against Temple.

The Owls stunned the Cougars 56-55 in the first meeting of the season. Houston used a dominant second-half performance to erase a four-point deficit.

Freshman Jarace Walker, a Pennsylvania native, had 23 points to lead the Cougars as Houston now leads by two games in the American Athletic Conference standings.

Team of the Week

Saint Mary’s Gaels

There were no lack of options with Texas, Marquette and Miami leading the way. However, with the way Gonzaga has dominated in the West Coast Conference, the Gaels get the nod for opening a two-game lead in the WCC standings after a 78-70 overtime victory against the Bulldogs on Saturday. The Gaels were listed by the college basketball betting lines as a rare favorite against Gonzaga.

Gonzaga led by as many as 11 points before a late layup by Mitchell Saxen sent the game into overtime. Augustus Marciulonis had five of his nine points in the extra session to give the Gaels the 78-70 victory.

Saint Mary’s has won 12 games in a row and is the lone undefeated team in WCC play.

Player of the Week

Trayce Jackson-Davis, Indiana

This was another tough choice. Jackson-Davis had 25 points and five blocked shots as the Hoosiers bounced back from a disappointing loss to Maryland to stun top-ranked Purdue.

Jackson-Davis has scored in double digits in every game this season and he had to earn his points going against the 7-foot-4 Zach Edey in this one.

Game of the Week

Texas vs Kansas

  • Date/time: Monday, Feb. 6, 9:00 p.m. ET (ESPN)
  • Game: Texas Longhorns vs Kansas Jayhawks
  • Live Stream: TBS.com

Yet another top-10 matchup for the Jayhawks as Texas comes to Lawrence.

The Longhorns are coming off a hard-earned road win against Kansas State and are trying to do it again.

Marcus Carr looks to get going after going 10 of 30 from the field over the last three games for Texas while Jalen Wilson is going after his seventh straight 20-point effort for the Jayhawks.

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