We took the holidays off, but The Other Top 25 is back with its first poll of 2019.
While we were gone, Furman lost its first and second games of the season, and though neither of those losses was bad (at LSU and at East Tennessee State), the Paladins plummeted in our poll. Call it a combination of two losses, the Loyola and Villanova wins not aging as well as expected, and some of the hype just wearing away.
In the Paladins’ place, Toledo has continued its climb. The Rockets are a borderline top-50 team in KenPom and have not lost since before Thanksgiving. In that time, they’ve beaten UC Irvine, Penn, Marshall, and Louisiana. Next, the real tests begin as MAC play tips off. Toledo starts with Ball State and Buffalo, so, ya know, yikes.
We only have one newcomer to the poll this week, and it’s the fightin’ Ray Giacol- uh, Jeff Rut- uh, Niko Medv- uh, Darian DeVries!. Drake, on its fourth coach in four seasons, sneaks in at No. 25 with five straight wins, including two against The Other Top 25 ranked teams. The Valley isn’t good this year and there’s an opportunity for the Bulldogs to emerge while the preseason favorites struggle.
The Other Top 25: Week 9
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Also receiving votes: Liberty 35, Georgia State 32, Hofstra 24, UC Santa Barbara 20, Fresno State 19, Penn 18, Northern Kentucky 10, Utah Valley 9, Seattle 9, Louisiana Tech 8, NJIT 6, Vermont 5, Saint Mary’s 4, Princeton 3, East Tennessee State 3, Southern Illinois 2, The Citadel 1, Texas Southern 1, Montana 1.