College Basketball: The Top 10 Games of the Week
This is the second week of my Top 10 games column. Last week turned out to be an entertaining week of college basketball, capped off with the UNLV upset of North Carolina last night.
As with last week, I will not include any potential tournament matchups, although those are mostly coming to an end. This is only for scheduled games.
Last week's 10 games didn't let me down. Let's hope these 10 are just as good.
As a side note, I want to make a prediction that the ACC takes back the ACC/Big Ten Challenge Title. I hope not, but I think that will be the case. We will see more about those games in a just a minute.
No. 12 Xavier @ No. 22 Vanderbilt (11/28, 7:00 PM ET)
The week starts off with a good one, as Xavier travels to Vanderbilt.
Xavier comes in 4-0 after handling Georgia easily over the weekend. Tu Holloway is one of the best players in the country, and Mark Lyons is scoring 17.8 a game for the Musketeers.
Vanderbilt bounced back after their loss to Cleveland State, with close wins over NC State and Oregon State. Vandy may not be as bad as they looked against Cleveland State, but may not be as good as their preseason ranking.
This game should show a lot about both teams.
No. 6 Duke @ No. 3 Ohio State (11/29, 9:30 PM ET)
The Big Ten finally made some noise last season during the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. This season, the challenge gets going with a bang.
Two of the top teams in the country square off Tuesday night in Columbus.
Ohio State, led by Jared Sullinger, looks like a National Title contender again. The Buckeyes just keep wining games under Thad Matta.
Duke has been the spotlight all season, which has included Coach K's record setting win over Michigan State and wins over Kansas, Michigan and Tennessee. If you missed the Kansas game last week, you missed a great one.
This is a game the whole country is excited for. It could also be the deciding game for the Challenge.
No. 11 Wisconsin @ No. 1 North Carolina (11/30, 9:30 PM ET)
As if Ohio State and Duke wasn't enough, another battle of top 15 teams takes place in Chapel Hill Wednesday night.
Wisconsin is undefeated, but largely untested. Wisconsin's star guard, Jordan Taylor, hasn't had to do much scoring yet, but he will if the Badgers want to beat the Tar Heels.
As of this writing, North Carolina is ranked first in the nation. After their stunning loss to UNLV Saturday night, they won't be ranked one anymore.
A week ago I would say I have no doubt UNC would win this game, but UNLV exposed them. If this game gets going in the pace that Wisconsin likes, it could be another nail biter.
No. 25 Creighton @ San Diego State (11/30, 10:30 PM ET)
Creighton is for real this year. Doug McDermott is a legitimate star, averaging 23.4 ppg. The Blue Jays went on the road and won at UAB, and beat Iowa at a neutral site.
San Diego State has only one loss this year, that coming to Baylor. They got a very impressive win last week when they went to Arizona and upset the Wildcats.
Both of these teams are trying to make a non-conference statement, in addition to the statements they have already made.
St. John's @ No. 2 Kentucky (12/1, 7:30 PM ET)
Kentucky will likely be ranked as the top team in the country by tomorrow. The Wildcats are 6-0, with 10 point wins coming over Kansas and Old Dominion as their closest calls.
Kentucky welcomes St. John's into Rupp Arena Thursday night.
St. John's has been very confusing so far this season. They had two tough losses at the hands of Arizona and Texas A&M, both ranked teams. Then, they lost to Northeastern by 14. Yes, that says North "eastern".
St. John's has had a tendency to play to their competition the last two years. If they want to hang with Kentucky, they are really going to have to play up.
Georgetown @ No. 13 Alabama (12/1, 9:30 PM ET)
Alabama, coming off a close win over VCU, plays their toughest opponent of the early season in Georgetown.
The Crimson Tide are still ranked high and still undefeated.
The Hoyas have looked tough so far this season as well. Georgetown's only loss came by four points to Kansas. Last week, the Hoyas knocked off Memphis in an OT thriller.
This game may not have the national spotlight that a Duke/Ohio State game does, but it may be just as good.
No. 9 Florida @ No. 5 Syracuse (12/2, 7:00 PM ET)
Another battle of Top 10's is set for Friday night when Florida goes to Syracuse.
Syracuse comes in undefeated, after suffering a couple scares at the hands of Virginia Tech and Stanford. Kris Joseph has been solid for Syracuse so far, and will need to continue to be if the Orange want to remain undefeated.
Florida has only one loss, and it was to No. 3, Ohio State. The Buckeyes are the only real test Florida and star Kenny Boynton have had, but they will surely be tested by Syracuse.
No. 22 Vanderbilt @ No. 7 Louisville (12/2, 9:00 PM ET)
The Commodores make another visit to our list when they travel to Louisville to play the undefeated Cardinals.
Louisville has dismantled every opponent they have faced and have not allowed more than 54 points. They only scored 54 against Arkansas State, but only gave up 27 in that game.
Vanderbilt will have to score more than 54 if they want to beat the Cardinals.
No. 1 North Carolina @ No. 2 Kentucky (12/3, 12:00 PM ET)
Even with Duke traveling to Ohio State, this is the game of the week.
North Carolina has been ranked No. 1 all year, but now that spot will likely go to Kentucky. This is a potential Final Four preview game.
Both of these teams will be coming off games already talked about earlier, with Kentucky playing St. John's and North Carolina playing Wisconsin.
This should be a fantastic game, with the winner possibly staking a claim as the best team in the nation.
No. 17 Marquette @ No. 11 Wisconsin (12/3, 4:30 PM ET)
Marquette travels to Madison to take on the Badgers. This is always an interesting game, between the two of the biggest basketball programs in the state of Wisconsin.
Both teams are undefeated as of now, but that could change, of course, especially considering Wisconsin has to travel to North Carolina four days before this one.
Marquette star Darius Johnson-Odom would sure like to leave Milwaukee with a win over their in-state rival in his senior year. The Battle of Wisconsin should be just that, a battle.