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The Circuit’s 2021-22 College Basketball 3rd Quarter Polls

Updated: Sep 21, 2022

The calendar has turned to February, which means there’s about one month left until the madness truly begins! Now it’s time to take a look at the college basketball landscape and predict who will be dancing well into March.

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The college basketball season is like a pressure-cooker. It’s essentially a three month sprint to March Madness, where it’s survival of the fittest. We’ve now approached the 3/4 point (roughly), so it’s time to check in and see who’s playing well and who isn’t.

Top 25

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1- Auburn Tigers

2- Gonzaga Bulldogs

3- Kentucky Wildcats

4- UCLA Bruins

5- Duke Blue Devils

6- Purdue Boilermakers

7- Baylor Bears

8- Wisconsin Badgers

9- Kansas Jayhawks

10- Houston Cougars

11- Arizona Wildcats

12- Michigan State Spartans

13- Villanova Wildcats

14- Providence Friars

15- USC Trojans

16- Ohio State Buckeyes

17- UCONN Huskies

18- Texas Tech Red Raiders

19- Illinois Fighting Illini

20- Texas Longhorns

21- LSU Tigers

22- Xavier Musketeers

23- Iowa State Cyclones

24- Loyola-Chicago Ramblers

25- Alabama Crimson Tide

The Auburn Tigers seemingly get better with each passing game, and are looking like national championship favorites. Meanwhile, elsewhere in the SEC the Kentucky Wildcats are starting to surge as we near the end of the season. But while those teams are on the rise, the Baylor Bears are slipping down the rankings (and as of writing this they are getting WAXED by the Jayhawks in Kansas).

National Player of the Year Race

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1- Jabari Smith (Auburn)

2- Johnny Davis (Wisconsin)

3- Drew Timme (Gonzaga)

This race has quickly become Smith’s to lose. He’s the best player on the best team in the nation, and very well could be the top pick in the draft.

National Freshman of the Year Race

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1- Jabari Smith (Auburn)

2- Paolo Banchero (Duke)

3- Chet Holmgren (Gonzaga)

Given Smith is the favorite for the Player of the Year award, it wouldn’t really make sense to favor anyone but him in the Freshman of the Year race, would it?

National Coach of the Year Race

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1- Bruce Pearl (Auburn)

2- Scott Drew (Baylor)

3- Tommy Lloyd (Arizona)

Lloyd has been a great story in Arizona, but Bruce Pearl is leading Auburn to a phenomenal season and deserves to be the coach of the year.

1st Team All-America

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G- Johnny Davis (Wisconsin)

G- Ochai Agbaji (Kansas)

F- Jabari Smith (Auburn)

F- Paolo Banchero (Duke)

C- Drew Timme (Gonzaga)

2nd Team All-America

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G- Collin Gillespie (Villanova)

G- Max Abmas (Oral Roberts)

F- Keegan Murray (Iowa)

F- Chet Holmgren (Gonzaga)

C- Kofi Cocknurn (Illinois)

3rd Team All-America

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G- Antoine Davis (Detroit)

G- Buddy Boeheim (Syracuse)

F- Trevion Williams (Purdue)

F- EJ Liddell (Ohio State)

C- Oscar Tshiebwe (Kentucky)

Final Four Predictions

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Gonzaga Bulldogs def Kansas Jayhawks

Duke Blue Devils def Auburn Tigers

One of my March Madness Rules is don’t trust Kansas; every year they make you think they can win the title, and then fall epically short. However, this could be the year the Jayhawks finally break through again. Auburn is a great story, but ultimately I have not wavered on my Gonzaga vs. Duke preseason prediction…

National Championship

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Gonzaga Bulldogs def Duke Blue Devils

I think these are the two best teams, and I think it is destiny for Coach K to make it to the national championship in his final year. While I would be rooting for the Blue Devils, this Gonzaga team is loaded and should cut down the nets.

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