The Wildcats are at a season-high No. 2 in both the AP and Coaches’ polls. Villanova also received four first place votes in both polls. Kansas assumed the top position and with games against Colorado and Nebraska on their schedule this week, it will probably stay there.
Kentucky’s loss to Devan Downey and South Carolina last night means that if Villanova wins tonight against Notre Dame, it will be ranked at least as high as No. 2 in the country in next week’s poll. However, there is a distinct possibility that they will be at No. 1 on Monday, as well.
Kansas, currently ranked No. 2, is the favorite to assume the top ranking on Monday. However, the Jayhawks have one of their most difficult remaining games on Saturday, when they will travel to Manhattan to take on Kansas State.
The possibility is there, but what does it mean? Well, being ranked No. 1 in February is nothing compared to be ranked No. 1 in April, but the excitement and recognition of being on top of the polls is a thrill for every school (just look at all the coverage Kentucky got for being No. 1 for exactly two days).
The reality is that barring something really special, Villanova will lose again this season. The window is small this year, and it may be the team’s best chance to grab the top spot. Tonight is step one against Notre Dame, and that is most important, regardless of ranking.
As expected, Villanova received a very high ranking to begin the season, tabbed as the sixth best team in the country in one poll and fifth in the other. They are one of six Big East teams in the Top 25 to start the season.
– David Cassilo