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Iowa Basketball: Hawkeyes Shrug Off Loss at Maryland to Rise in National Polls

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Wins over Wisconsin and Illinois outweigh a loss at Maryland as the Hawkeyes continue their rise up the national polls.

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Illinois v Iowa
Garza didn’t show anything to dispute his claim as national player of the year last week.
Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

The Iowa Hawkeyes lost a tough one at Maryland last week. It was emblematic of the grind of the Big Ten season. Iowa went to College Park to take on a top-15 opponent, sandwiched between a pair of home games against top-35 NET opponents. Such is life in this conference.

The loss, though, was outweighed by the two wins in those other two matchups. The Hawkeyes downed Wisconsin and Illinois by margins in line with their loss at Maryland. Today, they’re being rewarded with yet another rise up the national polls as a slew of other top-25 teams suffered worse or more numerous defeats without those key wins.

In the AP, Iowa moved up another spot from 18th to 17. Here’s a look at the full rankings.

1. Baylor

2. Gonzaga

3. Kansas

4. San Diego State

5. Louisville

6. Dayton

7. Duke

8. Florida State

9. Maryland

10. Villanova

11. Auburn

12. Seton Hall

13. West Virginia

14. Oregon

15. Kentucky

16. Michigan State

17. Iowa

18. LSU

19. Butler

20. Illinois

21. Creighton

22. Penn State

23. Arizona

24. Colorado

25. Houston

In the Coaches Poll, Iowa was likewise ranked 18th a week ago. And as in the AP, Iowa rose a single spot in the rankings on the back of the two wins last week, balanced out by the loss at now #9 Maryland.

Here’s a look at the full Coaches Poll.

1. Baylor

2. Gonzaga

3. Kansas

4. San Diego State

5. Louisville

6. Dayton

7. Duke

8. Florida State

9. Maryland

10. Auburn

11. West Virginia

12. Villanova

13. Seton Hall

14. Oregon

15. Michigan State

16. Kentucky

17. Iowa

18. LSU

19. Penn State

20. Butler

21. Illinois

22. Creighton

23. Arizona

24. Colorado

25. Houston

With Rutgers getting bounced from the top-25, the Big Ten is back down to only five ranked teams. Ironically, Maryland becomes the first Big Ten team to jump into the top-10 since Michigan State was ranked 8th back in week 10. Maryland, despite being ranked higher nationally, still sits a half game behind the Spartans and #20 Illinois in the Big Ten standings.

The Hawkeyes, fresh off wins over Wisconsin and Illinois, are now one game out of first place in fourth, where they hold the tie-breakeer over the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. Iowa now boasts five wins over AP top-25 teams (at the time of the game).

After a critical stretch where Iowa faced off with six ranked teams in nine games where the Hawkeyes went 6-3, we now see a bit of a reprieve on the horizon. Iowa travels to Purdue on Wednesday night to take on an unranked Boilermakers team that is fresh off a road win over Northwestern and boasts home court beatdowns of both Wisconsin and Michigan State. None of Iowa’s next five opponents are currently ranked, though Iowa does hit the road for three of the next five.