In college sports, any team can win on any given day. It doesn’t matter what you are ranked in the AP Top-25, or what score some computer gives you for the BCS. No one is immortal.
Take a look at this past week in the college basketball world.
On Monday, Kansas took over the number-one ranking in the AP Top-25. That night, they lost to an unranked-Kansas State, on a buzzer-beating shot.
So, naturally, the number-one spot was up for grabs.
On Wednesday, both #10 Wisconsin, #16 Louisville, and #9Georgetown were upset by lower-ranked teams. On Friday, #12 UConn was upset by #16 Louisville.
So, in theory, the Top-10 were safe in the rankings going into the weekend.
But, that is why they “…play to win the game.”
Saturday started the trend of toppling the top-10 teams. Saturday, #2 Texas, who was in-line to take over the #1 seed, dropped their game against unranked-Nebraska. #4 Pittsburgh, the ‘Beast of the Big East,’ lost a shocker against St. John’s in Madison Square garden. Also, #7 Notre Dame was defeated by unranked-West Virginia.
But wait, there’s more.
On Sunday, #3 Ohio State, the former #1-seed, went into their game against #11 Purdue in-line to take over the top-spot again, with both Kansas and Texas losing. But the Purdue Boilermakers played strong on their home court, and stunned Ohio State 76-63.
Now try and rank all the college basketball teams.
According to ESPN, the last time all top-4 teams lost in one week was the week of November 24th in the 2003-04 season.Out of the Top-15 teams, only Duke, San Diego State, BYU, Arizona, Florida, and Villanova won all their games this week. I don’t know who I would pick as #1.
Even in college football this week, there were three straight weeks where the #1 team in the country lost. The BCS standings were different every week. Every week, no matter how low your ranking was, you played the game as if your life depended on it.
This is why I love college sports.
Everyone plays hard. No one gives up. Even the underdogs have something to prove. You do not get this kind of competition in pro sports. In the pros, you see players giving up on the play, not caring whether they win or lose, and trash talk.
In college sports, it is competition at its finest. Players play every play like they have something to prove. No one gives up, and everyone plays to the final whistle.
Maybe some pro sports teams/players should take notes.