Two factors went into my decision to make this week's Patriot League Power Rankings reliant on the eye-test and how the teams have been playing. The chief reason was that the SOS and RPI numbers no longer make sense to use and no matter how you cut them, BU comes out as a prohibitive favorite. Just behind that, there is now enough information available to rank these teams based on their performance against each other.
So without further adieu, here are this week's rankings prior to Colgate and Lafayette's Monday night showdown.
1. American U. Eagles (12-7, 8-0)
And then there was one. The Eagles are the last remaining unbeaten team in the Patriot League after knocking off BU with one of the most impressive shooting displays in the history of basketball. Jesse Reed was a deserving recipient of the Player of the Week award and with 80-plus-point performances against BU and Army this week, the Eagles have established themselves as the team to beat at the half-way point of the season.
Last Week's Ranking: 2
2. Boston U. Terriers (14-7, 7-1)
BU and AU have separated themselves from the pack and American's 30-point win over BU was something of a fluke -- not because American won, just that they won by so much. Mo Watson and D.J. Irving are still two of the best guards in the league, they play great defense, and now that they have demonstrated an ability to bounce back by beating Bucknell over the weekend.
Last Week's Ranking: 1
3. Army Black Knights (10-9, 6-2)
Kyle Wilson and Tanner Plomb continue to fill it up from everywhere for the Black Knights. Unfortunately, a near loss to Colgate and loss to BU didn't make last week one of Army's best. With BU and Loyola on the horizon this week, this might not get a whole lot better. But if Wilson and Plomb can ever go off on the same night, all bets are off.
Last Week's Ranking: 4
4. Holy Cross Crusaders (11-9, 5-3)
The Crusaders have won four straight thanks to a favorable schedule that included Lafayette, Lehigh and Navy, but that streak kicked off with a win over Army. The way Justin Burrell and Malcolm Miller have been playing of late coupled with strong efforts by Dave Dudzinski make Milan Brown's team a dangerous one.
Last Week's Ranking: 3
5. Bucknell Bison (9-10, 4-4)
The record says it all: Bucknell has been merely average in Patriot League play. The Bison gave BU a close game, but lost to Navy. They scored 96 points against Lafayette, then 57 against American. Somewhere between the top and the bottom is Bucknell, so slotting them at No. 5 seems appropriate.
Last Week's Ranking: 5
6. Loyola, Md. Greyhounds (9-10, 4-4)
These Greyhounds will have a chance to crack the top half of the league this week with games against Holy Cross and Army. Much like with Army's scorers, you never know just how many Dylon Cormier is going to score and that alone should scare every team ahead of them. But, then again, if you can control him you can control Loyola.
Last Week's Ranking: 6
7. Lehigh Mountain Hawks (10-11, 3-5)
Tim Kempton won Rookie of the Week again and seems to have the inside track on that award. Not much else to go with here.
Last Week's Ranking: 8
8. Navy Midshipmen (7-12, 2-6)
The Mids have been less than impressive, to tell the truth. They are not as good as the teams ahead of them, but are considerably better than the pair of disappointments below them. Not a ringing endorsement, but they don't need my approval. They got senators to write their recommendations while I was stuck with an English teacher who hated me.
Last Week's Ranking: 9
9. Colgate Red Raiders (7-12, 1-7)
Please, just beat Lafayette. That's all I ask, Colgate.
Last Week's Ranking: 7
10. Lafayette Leopards (4-15, 0-8)
In all honesty, Lafayette could rip off eight straight wins and I wouldn't be surprised. They've had some great offensive nights, but haven't put together a complete game. Maybe Monday's nationally televised game with Colgate is their time to shine. If not, they're one loss away from needing to run the table for a .500 record.
Last Week's Ranking: 10