Mid-Major Top 25: Unbeaten Murray State Holds On To No. 1 Spot

The Murray State Racers refuse to lose or release their grasp on the top spot of SB Nation's Mid-Major Top 25.

1. MURRAY STATE (14-0, 2-0) (1)

According to Ken Pomeroy, the Racers now have a 30.9% chance of finishing the regular season undefeated. That's quite good.

2. HARVARD (12-2) (2)

The Crimson left themselves a little less margin for error heading into Ivy League play by losing at Fordham on Tuesday night.

3. GONZAGA (11-2, 1-0) (5)

The Zags are No. 6 in the latest set of RPI rankings, trailing only Syracuse, Duke, Connecticut, Seton Hall and Baylor.

4. CREIGHTON (12-2, 2-1) (4)

The Jays lead the nation with 45.1 percent accuracy from three-point range and are second with 19.9 assists per game. CU is also third in assist/turnover ratio (1.59), sixth in scoring offense (83.1), eighth in field goal percentage (50.1) and 11th in three-point field goals per game (9.2).

5. OHIO (12-2) (3)

The Bobcats had won nine straight and five in a row by at least eight points before falling to NEC favorite Robert Morris on Monday. The loss was Ohio's first since a 59-54 defeat at Louisville in November and OU's first home loss since Jan. 22, 2011.

6. SAINT MARY'S (13-2, 2-0) (7)

The Gaels welcomed BYU to the West Coast Conference with a 98-82 thrashing last week.

67216_st_marys_missouri_st_medium

7. WICHITA STATE (10-3, 1-1) (5)

In its 68-61 loss to Creighton, the Shockers shot a season-low 33.3 percent from the field and a season-low 19.2 percent from three-point range. In their three losses, Wichita State has made just 16-of-66 3-point attempts.

The Shockers shot a season-low 33.3 percent from the field and a season-low 19.2 percent from three-point range. In WSU’s three losses it is 16 of 66 from three-point range.

Read more here: http://blogs.kansas.com/shockwaves/#storylink=cpy
The Shockers shot a season-low 33.3 percent from the field and a season-low 19.2 percent from three-point range. In WSU’s three losses it is 16 of 66 from three-point range.

Read more here: http://blogs.kansas.com/shockwaves/#storylink=cpy

8. IONA (11-3, 3-0) (8)

Just when you think the Gaels couldn't have more weapons, Sean Armand comes off the bench and sets the MAAC record for made 3-pointers in a game by drilling ten. Armand finished with 32 points in Iona's win over Siena on Tuesday.

9. MIDDLE TENNESSEE (13-2, 2-0) (13)

Much of the reason for MTSU's unexpected rise to mid-major prominence has been the play of Iowa State transfer LeRon Dendy, a legitimate NBA prospect. Dendy (6-9, 230) leads the Blue Raiders in scoring (14.7 ppg), rebounding (6.9 rpg) and blocks (1.7 bpg).

10. VCU (11-3, 2-0) (17)

Over the past eight games VCU has won seven by double digits and forced teams into 20+ turnovers in four of those contests. The Rams will put their eight-game winning streak on the line Wednesday against a Georgia State team that has won ten straight.

11. CLEVELAND STATE (12-3, 2-1) (11)

The Vikings are 12-3, but they go stretches where they play really porous defense and also have the worst free-throw numbers (both made and allowed) of any team in the Horizon League. Both facts cost them dearly in a recent 73-67 loss to Youngstown State.

12. KENT STATE (10-3) (16)

The Flashes begin conference play on Wednesday night at Buffalo, a place where they've lost three straight games by an average of 17.5 points.

13. INDIANA STATE (10-3, 1-1) (14)

The Valley is off to a crazy start. The Sycamores did their part to add to the madness by losing to Drake 79-64 last week.

14. DENVER (11-3, 1-1) (9)

Despite a surprising loss to UALR in its second Sun Belt game, DU is 11-3 for the first time since returning to Division I in 1998-99. The Pioneers are leading the nation in free throw percentage (.808), rank 22nd in three-point field goal percentage (.397) and 28th in field goal percentage (.483).

15. BYU (12-4, 1-1) (12)

The Cougars could get a lift from the return of forward Stephen Rogers, who may return as soon as Thursday night's game against Loyola Marymount. Rogers has been sidelined since mid-December after undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee. The 6-8 junior played in the first 10 games for BYU and averaged 9.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.8 assists.

16. GEORGE MASON (10-4, 2-0) (NR)

Mason is going to be even more of a force in the CAA once formerly-suspended Andre Cornelius gets fully back into the flow of things. It would appear that he's well on his way after scoring 20 points in the Patriots' win over William & Mary on Monday. The game was Cornelius' fourth since returning to the team.

17. COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON (10-3, 2-0) (15)

The Cougars saw their 15-game home winning streaked when Ryan Pearson scored 35 points and George Mason walked out of TD Arena with an 84-76 win.

18. BELMONT (10-5, 3-0) (24)

The Bruins are 3-0 in the A-Sun and lead the league in scoring, scoring margin, field-goal percentage and free-throw shooting.

19. LONG BEACH STATE (8-6, 1-0) (18)

Now the Beach gets to find out how much that rugged non-conference schedule really helped.

67222_long_beach_st_auburn_basketball_medium

20. NORTHERN IOWA (10-4, 0-2) (10)

All of the sudden the Panthers have lost three straight, including a pair of league games to teams - Illinois State and Evansville - who weren't expected to challenge for the Missouri Valley crown.

21. DAVIDSON (8-4, 2-0) (23)

The Wildcats have a win over Kansas and an RPI solid enough (28) to put them in a position where they could potentially snatch an at-large bid if they only drop a game or two in league play but are upset in the SoCon tournament.

22. WEBER STATE (10-3, 2-0) (NR)

The Wildcats are one of only two teams in the Big Sky with a winning record. Montana would appear to be the only thing standing between them and a trip back to the NCAA Tournament.

23. GEORGIA STATE (10-3, 2-0) (NR)

The Panthers, who were picked to finish 11th in the CAA before the season, have suddenly won 10 straight games for the first time in program history. They've never won more than 12 games since joining the conference in 2005, nor have they finished higher than eighth. This Ron Hunter guy can coach.

24. ROBERT MORRIS (11-4, 2-0) (NR)

The Colonials are the early favorite in an NEC race that should be fun with LIU and Wagner also appearing to be very strong.

25. SOUTH DAKOTA STATE (12-4, 4-0) (NR)

The team most likely to be the Tuesday morning "did you see those guys?" squad of Championship Week. The Jackrabbits play fast and free.

FELL OUT:

Oakland (19), Milwaukee (20), Coastal Carolina (21), UCSB (22), Loyola (Md.) (25).

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