mbb power rankings

1. No. 14 Maryland (16-3, 5-1)

Maryland sits at the top of the Big Ten standings and The Daily Nebraskan’s power rankings. The Terrapins won 14 of their last 15 contests, with the only blemish a 82-68 loss at home to Michigan State. Maryland took care of business last week with a 74-70 win over Indiana. Next, the Terrapins have a big game against the No. 12 Ohio State Buckeyes on Jan. 22.

2. No. 16 Michigan (17-4, 6-2)

The Wolverines won both of their contests last week and extended their winning streak to four games. Michigan handed No. 8 Ohio State its first conference loss of the season, winning 84-75 on the road. The Wolverines followed that performance with a 86-42 win over Illinois . Michigan is starting to heat up and, with other top teams in the conference falling in the past couple of weeks, it could be a contender to win the conference this year. This week, Michigan faces Michigan State at home on Jan. 23, and travels to Northwestern to play the Wildcats Jan. 28.

3. No. 12 Ohio State (16-3, 5-1)

Ohio State fell from No. 8 to No. 12 in the women’s basketball AP poll this week after losing to Michigan. The Buckeyes also fell out of first place in this week’s power rankings. The loss snapped a nine-game win streak, but Ohio State is still very much in contention for the conference title. The Buckeyes have plenty of opportunities to bounce back from their loss this week. Ohio State plays No. 14 Maryland Jan. 22 on the road, then travels to Iowa City to take on Iowa on Jan. 25. The Buckeyes return home Jan. 27, for a contest with Michigan State.

4. Nebraska (14-6, 5-2)

Nebraska is the one of the biggest climbers in this weeks’ power rankings, moving four spots from No. 8 to No. 4. The Huskers added two more wins this week and both were over ranked opponents. NU defeated the No. 20 Iowa Hawkeyes 74-65 at home and the No. 25 Rutgers Scarlet Knights on the road 52-42. While still out of the top 25, Nebraska is now receiving votes in the latest AP poll. Next, the Huskers face the Purdue Boilermakers at home on Jan. 24, and have a rematch with Iowa in Iowa City on Jan. 28.

5. Minnesota (16-5, 5-3)

Minnesota moved four spots with Nebraska this week from No. 9 to No. 5 in The DN’s power rankings. The Gophers went 2-0 last week with wins over Wisconsin (90-65) and No. 20 Iowa (77-72). Minnesota has now won four of its last five contests. After Sunday’s win over the Hawkeyes, the Gophers have nine days to rest before traveling to Wisconsin to take on the Badgers on Jan. 31.  

6. Purdue (13-7, 4-2)

The Boilermakers fell a couple of spots in this weeks’ power rankings by no fault of their own. Purdue almost lost a 12-point third-quarter lead, but hung on to defeat Northwestern 63-60 last week at home. The Boilermakers got the job done, but because Nebraska and Minnesota had such successful weeks, they passed Purdue in this week’s rankings. Next for the Boilermakers is a road game against Nebraska and a home matchup with Penn State on Jan. 28.

7. Rutgers (17-5, 5-3)

The Scarlet Knights’ downtrend continued last week. The team lost both of its contests and fell in three of its last four games. The losses knocked the Scarlet Knights out of the top 25. But this team does have the ability to turn things around. Rutgers won 11-straight games before hitting this mini-skid, yet this is not the time of year when a team wants to go cold. The Scarlet Knights have one chance to reverse their fortunes this week when they take on Indiana on the road Jan. 27.

8. Michigan State (14-6, 4-3)

Michigan State started its week by keeping the momentum gained from its upset win over Maryland going. The Spartans beat Illinois 67-55 on the road but then returned home and fell to Indiana 69-65. With Illinois and Indiana holding last and 12th place in the Big Ten Conference standings, respectively, Michigan State will have a much tougher week this time around. First is a road test against No. 16 Michigan on Tuesday night, then the Spartans travel to Ohio State to take on the No. 12 Buckeyes on Saturday.

9. Penn State (12-8, 3-4)

Penn State had one opportunity to get a win last week, and it did just that. The Nittany Lions took down No. 25 Rutgers at home on Thursday 70-67. Teniya Page led PSU in the game and scored 34 points in the victory. Now with a mini two-game win streak going, the Nittany Lions look to keep their momentum going this week when they play Illinois Tuesday night and Purdue Sunday.

10. Iowa (15-5, 3-4)

Iowa fell out of the AP poll rankings this week after losing both  its games last week, running its losing streak to three-games. The Hawkeyes’ two losses last week both came on the road. They fell to Nebraska 74-65 and to Minnesota 77-72. Iowa ended 2017 at 14-1 punctuated with a 82-72 win over Michigan, but since the calendars flipped to the new year, the Hawkeyes are just 1-4. It doesn’t get any easier for Iowa. It returns home for the next two games to face No. 12 Ohio State Thursday night before a rematch with Nebraska on Sunday.

sports@dailynebraskan.com