College Basketball 2016, Week Five!

127The Spartans (#3) faced Louisville (#24) in this year’s Big Ten/ACC Challenge matchup .  Interesting note: the Big Ten is 5-0-2 in the last seven challenges. The ACC has not won the Commissioner’s Cup since 2008.  The Spartans were up to the challenge and won the victory despite a poor early going against Louisville’s tenacious defense (Michigan State was behind by 13 points at one point in the first quarter).  Later in the week the Spartans hosted Binghamton and cruised to a lopsided victory to improve to 9-0.

With losses by both Kentucky (#1) and Maryland (#2) this week, the Spartans found themselves as the new number one team in the AP top-25 ranking (and they have had wins against three top-25 teams at this early stage in the season). And, even at this early stage in the season, there are only seven (7) undefeated basketball teams remaining (Michigan State, Iowa State, Oklahoma, Purdue, Xavier, West Virginia, and SMU). The Big Ten currently has three teams in the AP top-25: Michigan State (#1), Maryland (#6), and Purdue (#11).

Next up for the Spartans: the Maryland – Eastern Shore Hawks (Wednesday) and the Gators of Florida (Saturday).  Go Green!

The upsets this week included:
Kentucky (#1) losing to unranked UCLA.
Maryland (#2) losing to North Carolina (#9).
Gonzaga (#13) losing to Arizona (#19) by five (5) points.
Syracuse (#14) losing to unranked Wisconsin in overtime and losing to unranked Georgetown.
Oregon (#15) losing to unranked UNLV.
Vanderbilt (#16) losing to Baylor (#25) by two (2) points.
Cincinnati (#17) losing to unranked Butler by two (2) points.
Texas A&M (#18) losing to unranked Arizona State.

The close calls this week (won by six points or less [two scores] or in overtime) included:
Michigan State (#3) defeating Louisville (#24) by four (4) points.
Kansas (#4) defeating unranked Harvard by six (6) points.
Virginia (#10) defeating unranked Ohio State by six (6) points.
Miami (#21) defeating unranked Nebraska by five (5) points.
SMU (#22) defeating unranked TCU by five (5) points.
Providence (#23) defeating unranked Rhode Island by only two (2) points.

Top-25 match-ups won by the higher-ranked team included:
Michigan State (#3) defeating Louisville (#24) by four (4) points.
Oklahoma (#7) defeating Villanova (#9).

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