Wolverines Fall to Indiana, Lose #1 Ranking
It was a short-lived week at the top for Trey Burke and the Wolverines. After earning the #1 ranking in the AP Poll last week, Michigan fell to #3 Indiana over the weekend in a game that was sure to determine who would be crowned #1 in the AP Poll on Monday. The Hoosiers bested the Wolverines 81-73 in Bloomington, handing Michigan its 11th straight loss against a top-five opponent.
Despite jumping out to a 20-7 advantage early, and leading by as many as 15 in the first half, Indiana squandered that lead to find themselves leading by only four with under 4 minutes to play in regulation. The Wolverines could never seem to mount a big enough comeback, however, and the Cream and Crimson held on in the final minutes to defend their home court and bring back the #1 ranking to Bloomington.
National Player of the Year candidates Cody Zeller and Trey Burke each led their teams in scoring with 19 and 25 points, respectively, but it was Zeller’s Hoosiers who made the big shots during key points in the game, shooting close to 40% from three-point range on the game. Indiana’s Victor Oladipo notched 15 points, including a thunderous dunk as time expired to seal the win, but it was his lockdown defense and energetic play that made the biggest impact on the game.
For the fifth time in as many weeks, a new #1 team was crowned in the AP Poll on Monday. Indiana took over the ranking for the second time this season, earning 1,615 first place votes. The Wolverines dropped to #3 with 1,490 votes, while Florida filled in the #2 ranking with a record of 18-2.
As we move ever closer to the NCAA Tournament, the parity in college basketball has left fans eager to see who will hold the coveted #1 ranking when it really matters – after the nets have been cut down on April 8th in Atlanta.