Mid-Major Report: Akron Jumps Into the Rankings for the First Time

Welcome to the fourth week of the College Pride Press Mid-Major Report. Finally, the Gonzaga Bulldogs are the number one ranked team in the land, it’s about time. Here you go folks….

Power Rankings:

Gonzaga (22-0, 10-0 WCC)

For the second time in program history, Gonzaga sits atop the college basketball world with the number one ranking in the land. Balance, Balance, Balance is the key for this team and they almost seem unbeatable at this point. At BYU on Thursday could be a potential trap game.  

St. Mary’s (19-2, 9-1 WCC)

Not much to say about the Gaels despite the fact Jock Landale is extremely underrated. If all goes according to plan, St. Mary’s will have a great amount of momentum going into the Gonzaga matchup on February 11th.

Illinois State (18-4, 10-0 MVC)

Even without their best player Mikyle McIntosh, the Redbirds were able to come away with a road victory over the Evansville Aces. Paris Lee is one of the most improved players in the country.  

New Mexico State (21-2, 7-0 WAC)

Similar to Gonzaga, the Aggies pride themselves on balance. After starting out the season 2-2, New Mexico State has proceeded to win 19 straight which is the longest streak in college basketball behind Gonzaga.  

Wichita State (19-4, 9-1 MVC)

Wichita State has been playing great team basketball. The Shockers frontcourt has been the best in the MVC and has anchored their scoring. WSU takes on Illinois State Saturday, at home, in a rematch of their close loss to the Redbirds just 3 weeks ago.

Middle Tennessee (19-3, 9-0 C-USA)

The Blue Raiders might be the most surprising team in college basketball that no one is talking about. MTSU has won 9 straight games and they have 3 players averaging upwards of 15 points per contest. They could be a nightmare for higher seeded teams come March.

Valparaiso (18-4, 8-1 Horizon)

Valpo has been very impressive lately. They have won 7 straight games all of which were in conference. Alec Peters is the anchor for this years squad that could potentially go undefeated for the rest of the conference season.

Akron (19-3, 9-0 MAC)

Like many teams on this list, Akron has put together an impressive win streak. The Zips have not lost in 13 straight games. The Zips share the ball and score a lot of points. They have 4 players that put up double figures in each game, and they average almost 80 points per game as a squad. The Zips take on Ohio, Saturday. 

Just Missed the Cut: VCU, Dayton, UNC Wilmington, Belmont, Monmouth

Players of the Week: 

Marcus Keene, Central Michigan 

The nation’s leading scorer went off again scoring 41 points in the OT win over Kent State on Saturday. What can this man do wrong??

Isaiah Johnson, Akron

A big part of the Zips success has come from the play of Johnson. Putting up 27 and 21 in MAC wins over Buffalo and Northern Illinois is a small sample of what this stud has done for Akron this year.  

Games to Watch:

Thursday, February 2nd

Gonzaga @ BYU (11:00 PM ET; ESPN2)

Friday, February 3rd

Rhode Island @ Davidson (7:00 PM ET; ESPN2)

Saturday, February 4th

Illinois State @ Wichita State (8:00 PM ET; ESPN2)

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