/College basketball rankings: Illinois still in top 10 after one of the biggest second-half surges in decades
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College basketball rankings: Illinois still in top 10 after one of the biggest second-half surges in decades

USATSI

It’s hard to find a weirder game than the one Illinois and Northwestern played Thursday night. The final score was Illini 81, Wildcats 56. But that alone doesn’t tell the story.

“I’ve never been [a part] of anything like that,” Illinois sophomore Kofi Cockburn said after the Illini’s incredible win.

And it really was incredible.

The Illini trailed by 15 points at halftime but won by 25 because they outscored Northwestern by 40 points — 53-13 — in the final 20 minutes. They became the first Division I team in the past 25 years to trail by at least 15 points at halftime but still win by 20-plus points. They also became the first team to outscore a power-conference opponent by at least 40 points in a half since Kentucky outscored Vanderbilt by 43 in a half in March 2003.

Northwestern only made two shots in the second half.

“To only score 13 points and have a couple of field goals [in the second half], we just have to play better,” said Northwestern coach Chris Collins.

Illinois remains No. 7 in Friday morning’s updated CBS Sports Top 25 And 1 daily college basketball rankings — and Northwestern has been removed. The Wildcats have gone from 6-1 to 6-4 in the past 10 days thanks to three consecutive blowout losses. They fell by 15 points to Iowa, by 19 points to Michigan, and by 25 points to Illinois. They’ve been replaced in the Top 25 And 1 by UCLA, which improved to 8-2 late Thursday with an 81-75 overtime win at Arizona State.

Jonathan Coachman is joined by expert sports bettors Mike McClure, Zack Cimini and Larry Hartstein to give out their best bets in college hoops for Friday night on The Early Edge. Download and subscribe on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Friday’s Top 25 And 1 rankings

Biggest Movers

Rk

Teams

Chg

Rcrd

1

Gonzaga

Jalen Suggs finished with 16 points, five rebounds, five assists and four steals in Thursday’s 86-69 victory over BYU. The Zags’ perfect record also includes double-digit wins over Kansas, Iowa and Virginia.

11-0

2

Baylor

MaCio Teague made four 3-pointers and finished with 17 points in Wednesday’s 76-61 victory over Oklahoma. The Bears have won all 10 games by double-digits.

10-0

3

Villanova

Collin Gillespie made six 3-pointers and finished with 22 points in Wednesday’s 85-68 victory at Marquette. The Wildcats’ lone loss is an overtime loss to Virginia Tech.

8-1

4

Texas

Andrew Jones finished with 23 points, six rebounds and four assists in Tuesday’s 78-72 victory over Iowa State. The Longhorns’ lone loss is a single-digit loss to VIllanova.

9-1

5

Kansas

David McCormack finished with 20 points and eight rebounds in Tuesday’s 93-64 victory at TCU. The Jayhawks’ two losses are to Gonzaga and Texas.

9-2

6

Creighton

Damien Jefferson finished with 19 points and four steals in Wednesday’s 89-53 victory over Seton Hall. The Bluejays will take a five-game winning streak into Saturday’s game with St. John’s.

9-2

7

Illinois

Kofi Cockburn finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds in Thursday’s 81-56 victory over Northwestern. The Illini’s resume also features wins over Duke, Minnesota and Indiana.

9-3

8

Michigan

Hunter Dickinson finished with 28 points and eight rebounds in Wednesday’s 82-57 victory over Minnesota. The Wolverines’ perfect record also includes victories over Northwestern, Maryland and Penn State.

10-0

9

Iowa

Luka Garza finished with 24 points, seven rebounds and four assists in Thursday’s 89-67 victory over Maryland. The Hawkeyes’ resume also includes wins over Rutgers, Northwestern, North Carolina and Purdue.

10-2

10

Tennessee

Josiah-Jordan James finished with 17 points and nine rebounds in Wednesday’s 79-74 victory over Arkansas. The Vols’ resume also includes wins over Colorado and Missouri.

8-1

11

W. Virginia

Derek Culver finished with 22 points and 19 rebounds in Monday’s 87-84 victory at Oklahoma State. Two of West Virginia’s three losses are to Gonzaga and Kansas.

9-3

12

Houston

Quentin Grimes made four 3-pointers and finished with 22 points in Wednesday’s 70-63 victory over Wichita State. The Cougars’ resume also includes wins over Texas Tech and SMU.

9-1

13

Texas Tech

Mac McClung finished with 16 points and four rebounds in Tuesday’s 81-71 victory over Kansas. Two of Texas Tech’s three losses are to Kansas and Houston.

9-3

14

Wisconsin

D’Mitrik Trice finished with 21 points and seven assists in Thursday’s 80-73 double-overtime victory over Indiana. The Badgers’ resume also includes wins over Minnesota, Louisville and Michigan State.

10-2

15

Minnesota

The Golden Gophers missed 21 of the 28 3-pointers they attempted in Wednesday’s 82-57 loss at Michigan. Minnesota’s other two losses are to Illinois and Wisconsin.

10-3

16

Michigan St.

Aaron Henry finished with 20 points and eight assists in Tuesday’s 68-45 victory over Rutgers. The Spartans will take a two-game winning streak into Friday’s game with Purdue.

1 8-3

17

Rutgers

The Scarlet Knights shot 30.5% from the field in Tuesday’s 68-45 loss at Michigan State. Rutgers is 1-3 in its past four games.

1 7-3

18

Duke

Wendell Moore finished with 25 points and three steals in Wednesday’s 83-82 victory over Boston College. The Blue Devils’ two losses are to Illinois and MIchigan State.

1 4-2

19

Ohio St.

CJ Walker missed all five shots he attempted in Sunday’s 77-60 loss at Minnesota. Two of the Buckeyes’ three losses are to teams ranked ahead of them in the Top 25 And 1.

1 8-3

20

Louisville

David Johnson finished with 17 points and five rebounds in Wednesday’s 73-71 victory over Virginia Tech. The Cardinals’ lone loss is a shorthanded loss at Wisconsin.

2 8-1

21

Saint Louis

Jordan Goodwin finished with 23 points and 13 rebounds in Wednesday’s 62-46 victory over UM Kansas City. The Billikens’ lone loss is a single-digit loss at Minnesota.

2 7-1

22

Clemson

Nick Honor made five 3-pointers and finished with 21 points in Tuesday’s 74-70 overtime victory over NC State. The Tigers have seven victories over teams ranked in the top 100 at KenPom.

2 9-1

23

Oregon

The Ducks finished with 14 turnovers and just eight assists in Thursday’s 79-72 loss at Colorado. The defeat snapped Oregon’s eight-game winning streak.

2 8-2

24

NC State

The Wolfpack finished with 14 turnovers and just eight assists in Tuesday’s 74-70 overtime loss at Clemson. NC State’s only other loss came at Saint Louis.

1 6-2

25

Connecticut

Tyler Polley finished with 23 points and four rebounds in Tuesday’s 65-54 victory at Marquette. The Huskies’ lone loss is an overtime loss to Creighton.

1 5-1

26

UCLA

Cody Riley finished with 22 points and 13 rebounds in Thursday’s 81-75 overtime victory at Arizona State. The Bruins are 8-1 in their past nine games with the lone loss in that stretch coming to Ohio State.

NO 8-2

In: UCLA. Out: Northwestern