Indiana v Nebraska

It’s time for Indiana fans to start fretting about a trip to the NIT

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We’re approaching panic time for Indiana Hoosier fans.

On Thursday night, Tom Crean’s club was outscored 41-23 in the second half by Nebraska, blowing a 13-point halftime lead in a 60-55 loss that dropped them to 13-8 overall and 3-5 in the Big Ten.

That’s not a good thing, but what’s far more troubling is the fact Indiana is staring a fall from being a No. 1 seed to an NIT team straight in the face.

Their best win right now is over Wisconsin, which looked like something the Hoosiers could hang their resume before the Badgers became quite beatable. Now that win over Wisconsin is something that Indiana shares in common with Northwestern. Resume defining? Not so much.

Here’s the problem: that’s really the only noteworthy win that the Hoosiers have. They beat Stony Brook. And Washington. And handed Illinois their sixth straight loss … a month after losing to the Illini. Indiana was 63rd in the RPI before losing to Nebraska, and if the season ended today, they probably would not even be in consideration for an at-large bid.

It’s still way too early to write the Hoosiers off, however. They still play Michigan twice, pay a visit to Minnesota and Wisconsin, and get home games against Iowa and Ohio State. That’s before they play in the Big Ten tournament. They’ll have ample opportunities to put together the wins needed to play their way into the Big Dance.

But this is a team chock-full of freshmen and sophomores that doesn’t have enough perimeter shooting or consistent support for Yogi Ferrell.

Out of the six games that I just mentioned, who can Indiana actually beat?

Iowa State’s starting center Jameel McKay remains suspended

Iowa State forward Jameel McKay celebrates on the court at the end of an NCAA college basketball game against Oklahoma, Monday, Jan. 18, 2016, in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State won 82-77. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
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Steve Prohm announced on Monday that starting center Jameel McKay will not be in the lineup on Wednesday when the Cyclones take on Texas Tech.

“He’ll practice today because I want him in practice,” Prohm said, “but game-wise, he’s suspended.”

McKay did not make the trip to Stillwater with the team on Saturday, where Iowa State beat Oklahoma State, 64-59. Prohm has not gotten into specifics regarding the cause of McKay’s suspension, but it’s reportedly an issue with the way he has been practicing. McKay is dealing with a nagging knee injury, which may play a role in the situation as well.

“My hope is he’ll be with us on Saturday,” Prohm said.

AP POLL: Villanova climbs to No. 1 in the country.

Jay Wright
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
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Like the Coaches Poll, Villanova found themselves No. 1 in the AP Poll during the regular season for the first time in the history of the program.

And like the Coaches Poll, there isn’t much in the way of a consensus when it comes to who is the No. 1 team, as there are six teams that received No. 1 votes in the poll this week.

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The biggest shock to me?

The No. 1 team in the NBC Sports Top 25, Iowa, received just 11 first place votes and is ranked fourth in the AP Poll.

They were ranked fifth in the Coaches Poll.

Can we get Fran McCaffery the love they deserve?

Here is the rest of the AP Poll:

1. Villanova (20-3, 32 first-place votes)
2. Maryland (21-3, 13)
3. Oklahoma (19-3, 7)
4. Iowa (19-4, 11)
5. Xavier (21-2)
6. Kansas (19-4, 1)
7. Virginia (19-4, 1)
8. Michigan State (20-4)
9. North Carolina (19-4)
10. West Virginia (19-4)
11. Oregon (18-4)
12. Miami (FL) (18-4)
13. Louisville (19-4)
14. Iowa State (17-6)
15. Texas A&M (18-5)
16. SMU (20-2)
17. Arizona (19-5)
18. Purdue (19-5)
19. Dayton (19-3)
20. Providence (18-6)
21. Baylor (17-6)
22. Kentucky (17-6)
23. USC (18-5)
24. Texas (16-7)
25. Wichita State (17-6)

DROPPED OUT: No. 22 Indiana, No. 25 South Carolina
NEW ADDITIONS: No. 23 USC, No. 24 Texas