College Basketball Power Rankings: Top Four Continue to Flex Their Muscle

Baylor, Gonzaga, Kansas and San Diego State have made quite a statement in 2020.
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For the fifth straight week, the top four in SI's power rankings stayed steady, pushing back at the narrative that this season is constantly in a state of chaos. Together, Baylor, Gonzaga, Kansas and San Diego State have just one loss in 2020...and that was when the Bears beat the Jayhawks in Lawrence. The road behind them, though, has been more bumpy, with the latest big change coming after Louisville fell on the road on Wednesday night. Here's this week's Top 25:

1. Baylor (22-1)

Add two more wins for the No. 1 Bears after games against Oklahoma State and Texas. Baylor's staunch defense held the Longhorns to just 16 first-half points in a 52-45 win. A crucial three-game stretch lies ahead: vs. West Virginia, at Oklahoma and vs. Kansas.

2. Gonzaga (25-1)

The Zags put a smackdown on a top-40 Saint Mary's team on the road last weekend, winning 90-60 as Drew Timme, Filip Petrusev and Killian Tillie combined for 57 points. The result showed strides for Gonzaga's defense too, though, as a highly-efficient Gaels offense had one of its worst showings of the season. 

3. Kansas (21-3)

A meeting between the top-two most efficient defenses in the country went to the Jayhawks, who exorcised their Morgantown demons in a nine-point win over West Virginia. KU held WVU to a paltry 15-for-43 mark inside the arc.

4. San Diego State (25-0)

The Aztecs' undefeated run looked like it could potentially be in trouble after a nearly even first-half vs. New Mexico on Tuesday ... and then they cruised to an 82-59 win. Only four games stand between SDSU and a perfect regular season, two at home and two on the road.

5. Dayton (22-2)

A surging Rhode Island team was no match for the Flyers this week. Dayton easily dispatched its closest A-10 challenger behind 22 points and 10 rebounds from Obi Toppin to continue its run through the conference.

6. Duke (21-3)

The Blue Devils flirted with absolute disaster at rival UNC over the weekend, somehow won and then gutted out a top-10 home win over Florida State 48 hours later. A Louisville loss on Wednesday that let Duke right back into the ACC race was the cherry on top.

7. Maryland (20-4)

The Terps notched arguably their most impressive win over the season in a road comeback at Illinois last Friday, then failed to put away lowly Nebraska and needed a Jalen Smith block to avoid a devastating loss. For now, perhaps chalk it up to overlooking an opponent, but things will be far from easy Saturday at Michigan State.

8. Louisville (21-4)

The Cardinals would have liked to have joined Duke and Maryland as top-10 teams to avert disaster in the last week, but they could not come back on the road at Georgia Tech as their 10-game winning streak came to an end. Louisville is now tied in the loss column with Duke atop the ACC race, but owns the head-to-head over the Blue Devils.

9. Auburn (22-2)

The Tigers are apparently the cat who has nine lives, as four of their last five games have gone to overtime–and they've won them all. The latest came Wednesday against Alabama, with Auburn holding off an astounding perimeter attack that saw the Tide launch 59(!) three-point attempts in a 95-91 Tigers win.

10. Penn State (19-5)

'Penn State basketball: Legitimate Big Ten contender' is a real thing, folks. The Nittany Lions are rolling with seven straight wins, including cracking the cheat code that is Purdue at Mackey Arena Purdue this week. Overlook them at your own risk.

11. Seton Hall (18-6)

The Pirates got clipped at home against Creighton on Wednesday after taking down Villanova on the road over the weekend. The former win was critical, as it allowed Seton Hall to still maintain a two-game advantage on the Wildcats and Bluejays heading down the stretch.

12. Kentucky (19-5)

The Wildcats solved their historic Knoxville struggles in a sweep of the state of Tennessee last week, beating the Vols before needing a second-half push to handle Vanderbilt. Freshman Tyrese Maxey had a big night against the Commodores, scoring 25.

13. Florida State (20-4)

Losing by five on the road at Cameron Indoor is nothing to be ashamed of, but the Seminoles are going to need some help if they're to win the ACC, with both Louisville and Duke now sitting above them by one game in the loss column. FSU does still host the Cardinals on Feb. 24. 

14. Villanova (18-6)

The Wildcats ended a three-game skid with a win over Marquette on Wednesday, but their Big East title hopes took a hit with Saturday's home loss to Seton Hall. This weekend, Villanova takes a brief break from conference play to take on Big 5 foe Temple in Philly. 

15. Colorado (19-5)

The Buffaloes control the Pac-12 after wins over Cal and Stanford, but a Thursday night trip to second-place Oregon looms. Colorado has a chance to sweep the season series after beating the Ducks on their home floor back on Jan. 2. 

16. West Virginia (18-6)

Offensive struggles saw the Mountaineers drop games to Oklahoma on the road and Kansas at home. West Virginia doesn't shoot nearly consistently enough from the outside to win when it struggles in the paint as badly as it did in those games, shooting 18 for 61 (29.5%) from two against the Sooners and 15 for 43 (34.9%) from two against the Jayhawks. 

17. Butler (19-6)

The Bulldogs split a pair of Big East games, losing handily to Marquette on the road before beating Xavier back at Hinkle Fieldhouse. Butler is directly battling several of its conference foes for NCAA tournament seeding, and upcoming road games with Seton Hall and Creighton will have a major impact.

18. Iowa (17-7)

The Hawkeyes played just once in the last week, blowing out Nebraska behind Joe Wieskamp's 30 points and Luka Garza's 22. They remain in the Big Ten race, but a tough remaining schedule awaits.

19. Texas Tech (16-8)

Has the annual Texas Tech February and March push under Chris Beard begun? The Red Raiders have won three in a row, including demolishing TCU on Monday, 88-42, to avenge an earlier loss to the Horned Frogs. Tech would need a miracle to win even a share of the Big 12, but its focus now should be trying to improve its NCAA tournament seeding as much as possible after a lackluster non-conference résumé.

20. Creighton (19-6)

Aside from a loss to Providence, the Bluejays have been playing their best basketball over the last few weeks, including winning on the road at Seton Hall on Wednesday. Despite starting wing Mitch Ballock (12.3 ppg) not getting on the scoresheet, Creighton put up 87 points on a stingy Pirates defense.

21. Oregon (18-6)

The Ducks' offense has been shut down in back-to-back losses to Stanford and Oregon State, a concerning development for a team that has yet to gel defensively. Payton Pritchard went 12 for 42 combined from the floor in those defeats, which shows how important he is to the offense. 

22. Michigan State (17-8)

Facing the possibility of losing four straight for the first time since 2007, the Spartans rallied on the road at Illinois to win on Xavier Tillman's put-back slam. Despite the times it's faltered this year, Michigan State still controls its own destiny in the Big Ten race by virtue of having two games left with first-place Maryland, whom it hosts on Saturday, and one left with second-place Penn State.

23. Illinois (16-8)

Back-to-back tough home losses against Maryland and Michigan State looked poised to be the least of Illinois' problems when star point guard Ayo Dosunmu went down with a bad-looking injury at the end of Tuesday night's defeat. Thankfully, an MRI showed no structural damage, though it's yet to be announced if he'll miss any time.

24. Houston (20-5)

The Cougars are quietly sitting at 20 wins and in first place in the AAC, and they blew out Wichita State last weekend to sweep the season series with the Shockers. Former Kansas transfer Quentin Grimes has been heating up offensively of late, which is good news for Houston.

25. Marquette (17-7)

A narrow road loss to Villanova on Wednesday night aside, the Golden Eagles have been making a push of late. The supporting cast around star Markus Howard seems to be settling into its roles, making Marquette a team to watch as a potential sleeper in March.

Dropped Out: Ohio State, Arizona