Record: 7-2, Last Week: 24; AP Poll: Receiving Votes
The Ducks wrapped up a three-game road stretch on Saturday afternoon with a bit of disappointing, falling 74-72 to Boise State. Still, while the loss itself is disappointing, there’s a bit of a silver lining here. Oregon trailed by as many as 17 points with just under seven minutes to play and battled back within two before Dillon Brooks missed his shot on the drive at the buzzer. Sure, that’s not an ideal finish, but the Ducks can take a bit of heart in their ability to battle back on the road.
Next Game: Tuesday, December 15 vs. UC Irvine, 11 p.m. ET
24. Texas A&M
Record: 8-2; Last Week: 23; AP Poll: 24; Coaches Poll: 24
Let’s talk about Jalen Jones for a second. Y’all got a second to talk about Jalen Jones? The Texas A&M senior finished with 25 points and nine rebounds to lead his squad to a 78-68 victory over Kansas State on Saturday despite battling strep throat throughout the week. Of course, this shouldn’t be unexpected that this point. Jones has been a workhorse all season for the Aggies and is averaging a career-best 15.2 points this year. When he succeeds, odds are pretty good Texas A&M will too.
Next Game: Saturday, December 19 vs. Baylor, 9 p.m.
Record: 8-2; Last Week: 22; AP Poll: 23; Coaches Poll: 20
In terms of crosstown showdowns, Cincinnati and Xavier might be one of the best and Saturday’s matchup was another solid battle – if you weren’t a Bearcats fan. Cincinnati, which finished 7-of-26 from beyond the arc, never got closer than five points in the second half as the squad has now dropped two of its last three.
Next Game: Tuesday, December 15 vs. Norfolk State, 7 p.m.
Record: 7-3, Last Week: Not Ranked; AP Poll: 22; Coaches Poll: Receiving Votes
Ok, this one may seem like a stretch (particularly with two early losses to unranked teams) but this is a new-look Bruins and they deserve to be this high on the poll. After defeating Kentucky, UCLA followed up with a strong showing against Long Beach State and a 71-66 victory at Gonzaga. Seriously, watch out for this team – especially with UNC on the slate this weekend.
Next Game: Tuesday, December 15 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette, 9 p.m ET
21. Miami (FL)
Record: 8-1, Last Week: 20; AP Poll: 15; Coaches Poll: 19
This Miami squad has certainly proved itself early this season. After November victories over Butler and Utah, the Hurricanes are riding a three-game win streak after taking down rival Florida 66-55 last Tuesday. It’s a testament to Miami’s grit that in a game where the Hurricanes shot just 33 percent they were able to hold the lead for the final 36 minutes. It also helped that the defense held Florida to 1-of-12 from 3-point range. That might have been part of it too.
Next Game: Saturday, December 19 vs. Charleston, 2 p.m. ET
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