LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- We have officially reached the point in the season where I burned through two hours Sunday night completing this ballot in the men’s AP college basketball Top 25 poll.

Considering it has no bearing on seeding for the NCAA Tournament and the only payment for being a voter is grief, that’s time I could have invested in breaking down the pitching rotations in the American League Central.

But I love college basketball. So it’s all good.

Except for fans of the Big 12. I’m reasonably confident this will be the only ballot that does not include Kansas State or Iowa State.

The more I look at their credentials, I don’t share the national fascination with the Cyclones or Wildcats.

Iowa State’s best non-league win was over North Carolina — and everybody is beating the Tar Heels these days. The Cyclones were blitzed by UConn and Iowa — and they’re 4-6 in their last 10 league games. Ooops. Almost forgot: Iowa State also lost to Missouri by 17. They've won four of their last 11.


Kansas State’s non-league credentials are just as shaky. Nine of the Wildcats’ 12 non-league wins are over teams ranked outside the Top 100 in Ken Pomeroy’s power formula. They also beat Nebraska and Nevada (in overtime). They’re also 4-6 in their last 10 league games.


  1. Alabama (23-4): I know the Crimson Tide have lost four games, all by at least nine points. I also know they played Houston at Houston and won by six. Sorry, Kelvin Sampson.
  2. Houston (25-2): I’m not saying the Cougars can’t win the national title. I am saying they have played one Top 50 opponent since Dec. 17. Put them in the SEC, Big 12 or Big Ten and the Cougars have more than two losses.
  3. Kansas (22-5): The Jayhawks have won their last four Big 12 games by an average of nearly 15 points
  4. Purdue (24-4): After ending their first two-game losing streak, the Boilermakers have all week to prep for Indiana’s visit to Mackey Arena Saturday.
  5. UCLA (23-4): The Bruins have a two-game edge in the loss column in the Pac-12 race — with four games to play.
  6. Arizona (24-4): The Wildcats will need help to catch UCLA in the Pac-12.
  7. Virginia (21-4): The Cavaliers have finally moved into sole possession of first place in the Atlantic Coast Conferences after beating last place Louisville by three and last place Notre Dame by two. Ugh.
  8. Texas (21-6): The loss to Texas Tech bumped the Longhorns down into a first-place tie with Kansas in the Big 12 — and they get the Jayhawks in Austin on March 4. 
  9. Marquette (21-6): If the Golden Eagles lose at Creighton Tuesday, we’re racing for a four-way tie for first in the Big East. 
  10. Baylor (20-7): The Bears had a nice lead at Kansas before getting dusted by 16 points. 
  11. Miami (22-5): What’s gotten into the Hurricanes? They’ve averaged nearly 87 points over their last six games. 
  12. Gonzaga (23-5): The Zags have a game against Saint Mary’s Saturday, sandwiched between two sub-200 teams.
  13. Saint Mary’s (24-5): All that matters is what the Gaels do at Gonzaga Saturday.
  14. Northwestern (20-7): Take a look at the Big Ten standings. Chris Collins has the Wildcats in second place.
  15. Providence (20-7): Wins over Creighton and Villanova have made the Friars a legit threat to win the Big East.
  16. Indiana (19-8): The Hoosiers will be fortunate if they can get to 20 wins with trips to Michigan State and Purdue this week.
  17. Xavier (20-7): Sean Miller’s team had lost three of five before taking down DePaul.
  18. Tennessee (20-7): The Vols have lost three of four and four of six — and might lose Tuesday night at Texas A&M. 
  19. San Diego State (21-5): The Aztecs are the team to beat in the Mountain West but still have to visit New Mexico and Boise State.
  20. Creighton (18-9): The Bluejays faltered in double overtime at Providence and get Marquette in Omaha on Tuesday.
  21. Connecticut (20-7): The Huskies handled Seton Hall in their only game last week.
  22. Texas A&M (20-7): The Aggies have won five straight and sit three games ahead of Tennessee and Kentucky in the Southeastern Conference.
  23. Oral Roberts (25-4): The Golden Eagles have soared to the top of the Summit League on a 12-game winning streak.
  24. Kent State (22-5): Respect the Mid-American Conference.
  25. Maryland (18-9): Yes, the Terps blew a late lead and lost at Nebraska but they also took down Purdue last week.

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