ROUNDBALL DAILY

Baylor is No. 1; Rutgers is ranked, it’s official: this college basketball season is drunk

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Long-dormant Baylor reaching the No. 1 ranking in the country isn’t even the craziest thing that has happened this college basketball season.

If this year’s college basketball season were a college student, it’d be a partier.

It’d be one of those 2.0 GPA students who show up at every dorm, hanging-onto-the-walls-drunk, trying to dance to “Applebottom Jeans.”

It’d be spouting off ridiculous claims, like “Baylor’s No. 1, North Carolina’s in last place in the ACC, and Rutgers — yeah, Rutgers —  is in the Top 25.”

Hahaha, ok dude. Yo, somebody cut this kid off.

But amazingly, this kid’s asinine claims are actually real.

This is like the time someone told me their friend was roommates with Pascal Siakam.

Baylor, led by sophomore guard Jared Butler (16.3 ppg) and senior forward Freddie Gillespie (9.9 ppg, 9.3 rpg), owns wins over Kansas, Villanova, Arizona and Butler, and sits at 16-1. Scott Drew has the program humming, and there’s no doubt that the Bears currently own the best resume in the country.

Rutgers, led by Bristol, Connecticut native and terrific coach Steve Pikiell, is 14-4 and 5-2 in the Big Ten, with wins over ranked teams like Seton Hall (which is No. 10 in the country!) and Penn State.

Since joining the Big Ten in 2014, they’ve finished higher than 14th (aka “last”) once.  Now, the Scarlet Knights are ranked for the first time since 1979 and if you check the NCAAB odds on game day, they’ll actually be favored over someone!

Almost as incredibly, North Carolina has taken a Rutgers-like position in its conference standings, sitting at 8-9 overall and a jarring 1-5 in the ACC.

Roy Williams has lamented that this is the “least-gifted team” he’s ever coached, and even wondered aloud if he should be fired.

We haven’t even mentioned the fact that San Diego State has risen to No. 4 in the country and remains the nation’s last unbeaten team at 20-0, the first time the Aztecs have reached that mark since Kawhi Leonard was on the squad. Or the fact that Dayton, buoyed by a tremendous Maui Invitational showing and a gaudy 16-2 record, checks in at No. 7, one spot ahead of Duke.

Both of those programs have made noise in the NCAA Tournament recently, but neither still has the head coach who helped them rise to national prominence. Steve Fisher retired in 2017 after building the Aztecs into a national power over 18 years. He was replaced by Brian Dutcher, a longtime assistant.

Archie Miller left Dayton for Indiana in 2017, and he was replaced by Anthony Grant, former head coach at VCU and Alabama. The Flyers have been led by 6-9 sophomore forward Obi Toppin, who incredibly, has played his way into becoming a potential top-five pick in the NBA Draft, as he’s averaging 19.6 points and 7.7 boards this season.

Like we said, this college hoops season is insaneeeee, bro. 

I mean, college hoops has done some crazy things before, there’s no doubt. You don’t have to look too far back in its history to remember when it took Loyola-Chicago on that trip to the Final Four, or when VCU, Butler and Wichita State each had those legendary one-month stands.

But this year? It’s getting lit once again.

Somebody hold its beer.

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