College basketball rankings: No. 1 Arizona blasts Wisconsin with showdown vs. Purdue up next

College basketball rankings: No. 1 Arizona blasts Wisconsin with showdown vs. Purdue up next

Arizona blasted Wisconsin on Saturday, 98-73. Purdue handled Alabama on Saturday, 92-86. So the much-anticipated showdown between Tommy Lloyd’s Wildcats and Matt Painter’s Boilermakers is now set.

Arizona vs. Purdue in Indianapolis.

It’ll be an afternoon matchup next Saturday inside Gainbridge Fieldhouse between the schools sitting at No. 1 (Arizona) and No. 2 (Purdue) in Sunday morning’s updated CBS Sports Top 25 And 1 daily college basketball rankings. It’ll headline next weekend’s great schedule that’ll also provide us with Kansas-Indiana, Baylor-Michigan State, Houston-Texas A&M, North Carolina-Kentucky, Creighton-Alabama, Clemson-Memphis and Ohio State-UCLA.

Sounds like a blast.

For those curious, KenPom.com is projecting a final score of Purdue 82, Arizona 80. If it goes down that way, the Boilermakers would enter Week 7 of this season with victories over the schools currently ranked No. 1 (Arizona), No. 7 (Marquette), No. 9 (Tennessee), No. 12 (Gonzaga) and No. 26 (Alabama) in the Top 25 And 1. That’s why, if Purdue beats Arizona next Saturday, the Boilermakers should return to No. 1 in the Associated Press Top 25 the following Monday based on the idea that A) their lone loss would be an overtime loss in a true road game to a top-50 KenPom team (Northwestern), and B) nobody would be able to come close to matching the quality of their victories.

Anyway …

Anybody who thought Purdue might look past Alabama and all the way ahead to Arizona must’ve forgotten that Saturday’s neutral-court contest with the Crimson Tide was Zach Edey‘s “Homecoming Game,” for lack of a better term. It was played in Toronto, where the reigning CBS Sports National Player of the Year was born and raised. Edey showed out in front of friends and family by taking 20 shots, making 12 of them and finishing with 35 points and seven rebounds. He was 11-of-11 from the free throw line.

“Obviously, Zach Edey is the leading candidate for national player of the year — [and] you can see why, ” said Alabama coach Nate Oats. “He’s a tough cover. We didn’t do a terrible job on him — and he [still] had 35 points. He makes things difficult.”

As Oats noted, Edey is indeed the leading candidate to be the national player of the year, which means he’s on track to be the first back-to-back Wooden Award winner since Virginia‘s Ralph Sampson took the trophy in both 1982 and 1983. Edey is now averaging a career-high 24.8 points, 10.8 rebounds and a career-high 2.6 blocks in 29.1 minutes per game. His shooting percentage of 63.0 is 2.3 percentage points higher than it was last season.

Top 25 And 1 rankings

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In: James Madison, PrincetonOut: UCLA, Ohio State

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