Fantasy Football 2014:

Jeff Eisenberg

Blogger Power Poll: Kansas remains No. 1 despite loss

Jeff Eisenberg
The Dagger

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The most heated debate in college basketball the past two days has been whether Kansas should remain No. 1 despite its loss to Oklahoma State or be pushed down to No. 2 in favor of Syracuse.

Sorry, Orange. In a close vote, our bloggers stuck with the Jayhawks.

Kansas and Syracuse each split eight first-place votes in our weekly blogger poll, but the Jayhawks kept first place because they received four second-place votes and the Orange got three seconds and a third. Kentucky, Duke and Kansas State rounded out the rest of the top five.

New Mexico made the biggest rise in the poll this week, climbing to No. 7 after an impressive road win at BYU. Purdue, on the other hand, fell from fourth to eighth as a result of an injury to Robbie Hummell and a home loss to Michigan State.

Entering the poll this week were Horizon League champion Butler and SEC powers Vanderbilt and Tennessee. BYU and Georgetown each dropped out after losses, as did Wisconsin despite clobbering Indiana in its only game this week.

1. Kansas (124)

Comment: We'll find out in a hurry whether Kansas' listless loss to Oklahoma State is legitimate cause for concern since the Jayhawks host Kansas State and visit Mizzou this week. (LW: 1)

2. Syracuse (123)

Comment: With an emphatic victory over Villanova in front of a record 34,616 orange-shirted fans at the Carrier Dome, Syracuse all but locked up first place in the Big East and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. (LW: 3)

3. Kentucky (112)

Comment: Want to know why Kentucky's struggling in the half court? Two-for-22 shooting from behind the arc in a loss to Tennessee decreased the Wildcats' 3-point shooting to 15 percent in its past four games. (LW: 2)

4. Duke (102)

Comment: If the Devils can survive a road test at Maryland this week and deliver a strong showing in the ACC tournament, they're very likely to claim the fourth No. 1 seed and avoid the Kansas, Kentucky and Syracuse until the Final Four. (LW: 5)

5. Kansas State (96)

Comment: A win in Lawrence this week against an angry Kansas team would elevate Kansas State into the No. 1 seed discussion, but otherwise the Wildcats are likely playing for a No. 2 seed. (LW: 6)

6. Ohio State (74)

Comment: Meet your new Big Ten leader. The surging Buckeyes are alone in first place by a half game after Robbie Hummel-less Purdue fell at Michigan State on Sunday afternoon. (LW: 8)

7. New Mexico (69)

Comment: There haven't been many more impressive road wins this season than the Lobos going into the Provo and taking down BYU to take over first place in the Mountain West. (LW: 10)

8. Purdue (67)

Comment: Purdue has winnable games against Iowa and Indiana this week, so maybe that will give the Boilers a chance to find their footing without Robbie Hummel.(LW: 4)

9. Villanova (66)

Comment: Who is the real Villanova? The team that started the season 20-1? Or the team that has lost 3 of 4 and looked anything but elite in the final 30 minutes at Syracuse on Saturday? (LW: 7)

10. West Virginia (61)

Comment: The Mountaineers can all but lock up a top four seed in the Big East tournament and a first-round bye if they can defeat Georgetown on Monday night. (LW: 9)

11. Michigan State (53)

Comment: Eight points and eight turnovers were not what Michigan State expected from Kalin Lucas against Purdue, but the Spartans won anyway to position themselves to earn a share of first place in the Big Ten. (LW: 11)

12. Temple (22)

Comment: The Owls officially Big Five champs after beating La Salle on Sunday. Now they set their sights on the Atlantic 10 title entering the final week of the regular season. (LW: 14)

13. Vanderbilt (21)

Comment: An overtime win against Georgia and an impressive win at Arkansas kept Vanderbilt in contention for the SEC East title. (LW: NR)

14. Pittsburgh (20)

Comment: Even with last week's loss at Notre Dame, the Panthers have still won six of seven to move to within a game of second place in the Big East. (LW: 12)

15. Butler (18)

Comment: The Bulldogs became the only team in the nation to complete conference play undefeated after overcoming the absence of Gordon Hayward to defeat Valpo last week. (LW: NR)

16. Tennesee (14)

Comment: No team has two better wins this season than the Vols' two against Kansas and Kentucky, which is why the Vols could earn a top-four NCAA tournament seed with a strong finish. (LW: NR)

Others receiving votes: Wisconsin 13, BYU 8, Gonzaga 5, Texas 4, Georgetown 3, Baylor 2

Voters:

Jeff Eisenberg and Matt Norlander, The Dagger

Zach Hayes, Rush The Court

Scott Procious, NBE Basketball Report

Gary Moore, The College Hardwood

Chris Kulenych & Craig Gately, Bracketology 101

Rob Dauster, Ballin is a Habit

Jameson Fleming, Bleacher Report

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