Who's No. 1 in college hoops?
Ohio State lost at UNC last night in the most high-profile game of the new season. And after watching it, I'm convinced that the No. 1 team in the country is...
Ohio State. (Yes, even though they lost.)
Consider this one factor: Ohio State was playing without Greg Oden, who is not only their best player but who is also the most talented player in the country (if you believe players who are a lock to be the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA draft -- for three straight years -- qualifies one as "most talented.") Presumably, Oden, who was sitting on the bench, just got hungrier.
If the Buckeyes can keep up with full-strength UNC -- in Chapel Hill and without their own best player who doubles as potentially the most dominating player in the country -- I'd say that if the Top 25 is supposed to reflect previous performance plus future potential, the Buckeyes have a serious claim as the team to beat.
(Combine this game with the one that OSU will play in late December at Florida -- again without Oden -- and we'll have a great idea of the baseline that OSU is at compared to the elite teams before they add Oden into the mix.)
The game last night said more about the jaw-dropping potential for this Ohio State team next March than it did about UNC. In a rematch in the Final Four next spring on a neutral court with Oden at full strength, would anyone really want to pick against OSU?
More Quickie-style stuff coming later this morning...