NCAA Basketball Rankings 2012: Mid-Major Rankings for Week 5

Jesse Kramer@Jesse_KramerCorrespondent IDecember 3, 2012

NCAA Basketball Rankings 2012: Mid-Major Rankings for Week 5

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    A few of the top mid-majors took some hits over the past week.

    Two of the top three, Creighton and Ohio, were uspet, with the Bluejays falling to Boise State and the Bobcats losing at Robert Morris.

    With those losses, Gonzaga jumped up to take Creighton's spot as the No. 1 mid-major in college basketball.

    Read on to see the complete Mid-Major Top 25.

    (I consider a mid-major to be any team that does not compete in the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Big East, SEC, Pac-12, Atlantic 10, Conference USA or Mountain West.)

25. Eastern Kentucky Colonels

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    Record: 7-0

    Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked

    Notable Wins: None

    Eastern Kentucky has yet to play any high-quality opponents, but the Colonels' 7-0 record is impossible to ignore. They are No. 30 in points per game with 78.9, No. 30 in assists with 16.3 dimes per game and No. 13 in field-goal percentage at 50.1 percent.

    The Colonels will play their first true road games of the season against North Carolina Central and Chattanooga this week.

24. Akron Zips

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    Record: 4-2

    Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked

    Notable Wins: Penn State (Neutral), Middle Tennessee (Home)

    Akron picked up its best win of the young season on Sunday by defeating Middle Tennessee in overtime. Point guard Alex Abreu was the star in the win, with 19 points, seven assists and four steals.

    The Zips will face their first Top 25 opponent of the season, Creighton, in their next game on Sunday, December 9.

23. Santa Clara Broncos

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    Record: 5-2

    Last Week's Rank: 18

    Notable Wins: Saint Louis (Road)

    Santa Clara lost a pair of games at home last week to Utah State and UC Santa Barbara, but both losses came in overtime, where the Broncos had a chance to win.

    Through seven games shooting guard Kevin Foster is No. 7 in scoring with 22.6 points per game.

22. Loyola (MD) Greyhounds

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    Record: 7-2

    Last Week's Rank: 11

    Notable Wins: None

    Loyola's six-game winning streak ended with a 65-50 loss at Florida Gulf Coast on Saturday. In the loss the Greyhounds were without star player Erik Etherly, who is No. 1 on the team in rebounding and No. 2 in scoring.

    The Greyhounds now open up their MAAC slate this week with games against Niagara and St. Peter's.

21. George Mason Patriots

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    Record: 5-3

    Last Week's Rank: 19

    Notable Wins: Virginia (Home)

    George Mason has had a few chances for a signature win, but once again the Patriots fell short on Sunday. Taking on Maryland at the BB&T Classic, George Mason stuck close with the Terrapins, but were ultimately defeated 69-62.

20. Charleston Cougars

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    Record: 5-2

    Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked

    Notable Wins: Baylor (Road)

    Charleston made its way onto the national scene with a win at Baylor on November 24. Last week, the Cougars followed that victory with two more road wins over Charleston Southern and Elon.

    On Tuesday night they will get a shot at No. 5 Louisville.

19. Illinois-Chicago Flames

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    Record: 6-1

    Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked

    Notable Wins: Iona (Neutral), Northwestern (Road)

    Illinois-Chicago received little to no attention in the preseason, but the Flames have put together a great first few weeks of the season.

    Their only loss so far is to nationally ranked New Mexico. They went 2-1 at the Paradise Jam in November, and over the weekend they defeated New Mexico on the road.

18. Western Michigan Broncos

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    Record: 6-1

    Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked

    Notable Wins: South Florida (Road)

    Western Michigan continued its winning streak last week with wins over High Point and Oakland. The Broncos, since losing at Cornell in their season opener, have now won six games in a row.

    They will play a pair of challenging road games at Michigan and Illinois State this week.

17. Utah State Aggies

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    Record: 4-1

    Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked

    Notable Wins: Santa Clara (Road)

    Utah State picked up its first quality win of the season by beating Santa Clara on the road. The Aggies get another shot at a high-quality mid-major at Brigham Young on Wednesday.

16. Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders

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    Record: 5-2, 1-0 Sun Belt

    Last Week's Rank: 20

    Notable Wins: UCF (Road)

    Middle Tennessee lost at Akron on Sunday, but got a road win over Louisiana-Lafayette earlier in the week to begin conference play at 1-0.

    The Blue Raiders' next three games will be key for their nonconference resume, as they face UAB, Ole Miss and Belmont.

15. Valparaiso Crusaders

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    Record: 5-2

    Last Week's Rank: 15

    Notable Wins: Kent State (Road)

    Valparaiso's three-game winning streak ended on Sunday with a loss at Saint Louis.

    The Crusaders return home for a game against IPFW on Wednesday before playing at New Mexico on Saturday.

14. South Dakota State Jackrabbits

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    Record: 6-2, 1-0 Summit

    Last Week's Rank: 17

    Notable Wins: Marshall (Neutral)

    South Dakota State extended its winning streak to five games with victories over North Dakota and Nebraska-Omaha last week. With the win over Omaha, the Jackrabbits are also 1-0 in conference play.

    On Tuesday the Jacks will play at Minnesota in their first game against a ranked opponent.

13. Northern Iowa Panthers

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    Record: 4-3

    Last Week's Rank: 14

    Notable Wins: None

    Northern Iowa lost three games to very good teams at the Battle 4 Atlantis, but the Panthers ended the losing streak with a win over Milwaukee on Saturday.

    The Panthers should be able to get another win on Wednesday against Northern Colorado before playing at George Mason on Saturday.

12. St. Mary's Gaels

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    Record: 5-2

    Last Week's Rank: 13

    Notable Wins: Utah State (Road)

    St. Mary's put its DIRECTV Classic woes behind with an 86-68 win over Cal Poly, who upset UCLA a few games ago. 

    This week the Gaels' only game is at Drake on Wednesday.

11. Brigham Young Cougars

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    Record: 5-3

    Last Week's Rank: 10

    Notable Wins: None

    Brigham Young had another chance for a notable win on Saturday against Iowa State, but the Cougars fell well short, losing 83-62.

    The Cougars return home this week for games against rivals Utah State and Utah.

10. Lehigh Mountain Hawks

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    Record: 6-2

    Last Week's Rank: 12

    Notable Wins: None

    Lehigh has won its last five games with an average margin of victory of 17.4 points.

    The Mountain Hawks will play very winnable games against Fordham and St. Francis (PA) this week before going into a tougher stretch that includes road games versus North Texas and Virginia Commonwealth.

    Lehigh shooting guard C.J. McCollum is currently leading the country in scoring with 25.9 points per game.

9. Belmont Bruins

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    Record: 5-2

    Last Week's Rank: 8

    Notable Wins: Stanford (Road)

    Belmont lost in its only game last week against Virginia Commonwealth.

    The Bruins will be favored to win their only game this week against Lipscomb. Belmont beat the Bisons on the road by 29 points in its season-opening game. 

8. Davidson Wildcats

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    Record: 4-3, 1-0 SoCon

    Last Week's Rank: 9

    Notable Wins: Vanderbilt (Neutral), West Virginia (Neutral)

    Davidson is only one game above .500, but the Wildcats' losses have come to high-quality teams like New Mexico and Gonzaga.

    Over the weekend Davidson opened its conference slate with a 81-55 win at Chattanooga. The Wildcats will host Charlotte on Wednesday before going back to SoCon play against Wofford on Saturday.

7. Ohio Bobcats

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    Record: 6-1

    Last Week's Rank: 3

    Notable Wins: Richmond (Home)

    Ohio picked up an important win over Saint Bonaventure early in the week, but then fell at Robert Morris on Saturday.

    The Bobcats will get their toughest test of the season so far when they play at Memphis on Wednesday night.

6. Illinois State Redbirds

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    Record: 5-2

    Last Week's Rank: 7

    Notable Wins: UAB (Neutral)

    Illinois State may have lost its last two games after starting 5-0, but there is no shame in that. The first loss was in overtime to Northwestern, and then on Saturday the Redbirds only lost by three points at No. 5 Louisville. 

5. Bucknell Bison

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    Record: 7-1

    Last Week's Rank: 6

    Notable Wins: Purdue (Road), George Mason (Home)

    Bucknell responded to its loss at Penn State two weeks ago by beating a pair of Ivy League opponents, Dartmouth and Columbia. The Bison now return home for games against Kent State and La Salle.

4. Wichita State Shockers

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    Record: 8-0

    Last Week's Rank: 5

    Notable Wins: VCU (Road), Iowa (Neutral)

    Wichita State remained unbeaten by beating Air Force in the Mountain West/MVC Challenge on Sunday. The Shockers' only game this week is at home against 1-4 Northern Colorado.

3. Murray State Racers

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    Record: 5-1

    Last Week's Rank: 4

    Notable Wins: St. John's (Neutral)

    Murray State rebounded from its Charleston Classic championship-game loss to Colorado with a pair of wins last week over Old Dominion and Lipscomb. The Racers will play five of their next eight games on the road.

2. Creighton Bluejays

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    Record: 7-1

    Last Week's Rank: 1

    Notable Wins: Wisconsin (Neutral), Arizona State (Neutral), St. Joe's (Home)

    Creighton lost its spot as the No. 1 mid-major after a loss at home to Boise State on Wednesday.

    The Bluejays continue their tough stretch, with games against Nebraska and Akron this week and California next week.

1. Gonzaga Bulldogs

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    Record: 8-0

    Last Week's Rank: 2

    Notable Wins: West Virginia (Home), Clemson (Neutral), Davidson (Neutral)

    Gonzaga continued its perfect start to the season with wins over Lewis-Clark State and Pacific last week. So far, only one team (Clemson) has come within single digits of the Zags.

    The Bulldogs have a tough upcoming stretch, playing their next three games against Washington State, Illinois and Kansas State.