The basketball polls aren't nearly as interesting as college football polls because the basketball polls don't matter much. Is the Hoosiers' ascent in the polls enough to get me interested? Nah. What has me interested is that the Indianapolis Star's article today is wrong on some pretty basic facts. Here's what the Star says:
Eric Gordon and Co. are gaining on Calbert Cheaney. Indiana climbed two spots to No. 7 in The Associated Press men's college basketball poll released Monday. It's the
Hoosiers' highest ranking since March 15, 1993, when Cheaney and the Hoosiers entered the NCAA Tournament ranked No. 1.
In fairness to the Star, this article is attributed to Star and wire reports, but a Google news search indicates that the Star is the only outlet running this text. Certainly, 1993 is a line of demarcation in the history of IU basketball. It's the last time IU won the Big Ten outright, the last time the Hoosiers were ranked #1, the last time the Hoosiers entered the Tournament as an expected title contender. In the 15 season period that ended in 1993, the Hoosiers spent 108 weeks in the AP top 10. Since then, only 14 weeks (not counting this season):
1/17/94: 8Preseason 1995: 912/2/96: 812/15/98: 1012/22/98: 1012/29/98: 81/3/00: 101/10/00: 92/7/00: 102/14/00: 10Final 2002: 312/2/02: 1012/9/02: 712/16/02: 6
I can cut the Star some slack on the 2002 final poll. No one really cares who is ranked where after the NCAA Tournament. But numerous online sources, including IU's official site and ESPN's archives, reveal that IU was ranked #6 when Mike Davis ran on to the court during the Kentucky game on December 21, 2002. Certainly, the Hoosiers haven't been ranked this high so late in the regular season since 1993, but that's not what the article said. Perhaps the Star should devote fewer resources to impugning Tony Dungy's worth as a father (I won't honor the article with a link) and more to the basic nuts and bolts of journalism.