After wins over Rutgers and Purdue (and losses by just about every team ranked ahead of them) this week, the Iowa Hawkeyes moved to third in the AP Poll and fourth in the USA Today Coaches Poll. The Hawkeyes are ranked only behind North Carolina and Oklahoma in both polls.
AP Top 25 Poll
|1||Oklahoma Sooners (36)||16-2||1592|
|2||North Carolina Tar Heels (29)||19-2||1586|
|5||Texas A&M Aggies||17-2||1332|
|9||West Virginia Mountaineers||16-3||1105|
|12||Michigan State Spartans||17-4||869|
|14||Iowa State Cyclones||15-4||792|
|22||Wichita State Shockers||14-5||151|
|24||Duke Blue Devils||15-5||145|
|25||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||14-5||136|
|Others Receiving Votes: Dayton 77, South Carolina 74, St. Mary's 42, Pittsburgh 38, USC 27, Butler 26, Clemson 18, VCU 17, Valparaiso 9, Hawaii 9, Utah 5, Connecticut 5, UAB 4, Chattanooga 2, Navy 1, Colorado 1, Grand Canyon 1, Michigan 1|
USA Today Coaches Poll
|1||North Carolina (23)||18-2||791|
|Others Receiving Votes: Dayton 49; Saint Mary's 31; Clemson 30; Notre Dame 20; Gonzaga 17; Butler 15; Southern California 14; Connecticut 11; California 10; Michigan 10; Washington 7; Valparaiso 6; Virginia Commonwealth 6; LSU 6; Arkansas-Little Rock 5; Alabama at Birmingham 4; Utah 4; Monmouth 3; Texas 3; St. Joseph?s 2; Oregon State 1.|
Iowa finished just three points behind the Jayhawks for third place in the Coaches Poll, and there were shenanigans afoot.
Iowa finishes 3 points behind Kansas for 3rd in coaches' poll. One (unnamed) coach voted Hawkeyes 14th. (One voted them 2nd.)— Chad Leistikow (@ChadLeistikow) January 25, 2016
Iowa has not been ranked in the top 5 of any major poll since January 10, 1989, and has not been ranked fourth since earlier in that same season. The last time Iowa was ranked third in any poll, it was the halcyon days of B.J. Armstrong and Roy Marble:
The last time Iowa was ranked No. 3 by AP was Dec. 8, 1987— Scott Dochterman (@ScottDochterman) January 25, 2016
Monday's bracket projections have only reaffirmed Iowa's current place among the nation's elite teams. NBC Sports, USA Today, and Jerry Palm at CBS have Iowa as a No. 1 seed if the NCAA Tournament was picked today. ESPN's Joe Lunardi places Iowa as a No. 2 seed. NBC's bracket post led with the Hawkeyes.
A bit quietly, at least on the national scene, the Iowa Hawkeyes are putting together a resume worthy of No. 1 seed consideration. Their last loss was a one-point decision at Iowa State. Since then, the Hawkeyes have beaten both Michigan State and Purdue twice, and also taken down a pretty good Michigan squad.
One thing that could potentially hurt Iowa going forward: Its quality wins are starting to look a bit less quality than before. Iowa's best wins came against No. 11 Michigan State, which lost a spot in the poll by losing to Nebraska this week. Purdue, which Iowa has beaten twice, comes in at No. 21. Wichita State has risen back to No. 25, but Iowa played a Shockers squad depleted by injury. The Hawkeyes could improve that with a win over No. 7 Maryland this week, however. Iowa's three losses -- Iowa State, Dayton and Notre Dame -- all receive votes in both polls and rank between Nos. 16 and 29, with the Fighting Irish sneaking into the AP Poll at No. 25.