Purdue's 76-63 win over second-ranked Ohio State, while not much of an upset — the Boilermakers are undefeated at home this season, and E'Twaun Moore, who had 38 points in the victory, is no slouch — does mean that all of the top four teams in this week's AP Poll lost this week. With Ohio State joining Kansas (lost to Kansas State), Texas (felled by Nebraska) and Pittsburgh (upended by the giantslayers of St. John's), it's the first time since November 2003 that the top four in the AP Poll have all lost in one week.
And that year's losses made more sense: Connecticut, Duke, Michigan State, and Arizona all lost, but in the second week of the rankings; for perspective, this past week's AP top 25 was the 15th of the 2010-11 season. So what does this mean for the losing teams?
Well, if history is a predictor, it could actually be a good thing for a couple of the teams. Connecticut and Duke both went on to the Final Four after being part of the early-season ignominy, and the Emeka Okafor-led Huskies won the 2004 NCAA Tournament. But Michigan State and Arizona weren't so lucky: both teams received low seeds in the Tournament (Michigan State earned a seven seed, and Arizona a nine) and lost in the first round.
Ignoring the history for a moment, though: isn't this just the sort of chaos that presages an insane March Madness? And aren't we — and the NCAA, and its new broadcast partners — lucky that a field of 68 teams that is weak from top to bottom will be tolerated, and perhaps praised, because of the drama that we're likely to see?