The first action of the new season is behind us. For some local squads, it’s about settling in, for others they’re still in search of an identity. With that said, there was some movement in the latest Power Rankings.
Record and last week’s ranking in parenthesis.
- Harvard (2-0, 1) – Crimson are off to a 2-0 start. Their latest win came in an overtime thriller over UMass, 70-67. Sophomore point guard Bryce Aiken came up huge, netting 30 points, which included the game-winner with under two seconds to go. Road games against Holy Cross (Thursday at 7 p.m.) and Manhattan (Saturday at 1 p.m.) are on deck this week.
- Boston College (2-0, 5) – Not going to lie, Eagles look impressive. Not only is their offense clicking on all cylinders, but the defense has turned it up a notch. BC is suffocating opponents’ offenses – allowing 65.5 points per game thus far. Sacred Heart comes to town Tuesday for a 7 p.m. tip, before the Eagles battle Texas Tech at 12 p.m. on Saturday at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut.
- UMass (1-1, 4) – UMass hung around with Harvard, thanks to 23 points – which included two game-tying 3-pointers – from Luwane Pipkins. Minutemen have also done a fairly decent job at not turning the ball over as well, as they’re averaging 16 per game which is not bad for them. Niagara visits Amherst on Sunday for a 12 p.m. start time.
- Northeastern (2-0, 6) – Huskies really only had one test last week and they survived it by topping Boston University, 65-59. Northeastern has to find out who its go-to scorer is going to be, because without one its going to be in some trouble as the season progresses. Nonetheless, the Huskies are 2-0. Road games against Standford (Friday at 6 p.m.) and Ohio State (Sunday at 2 p.m.) are going to present a tall task for Bill Coen’s club.
- UMass Lowell (1-1, 2) – River Hawks, without their top player Jahad Thomas, took UMass down to the wire before folding in their season opener. They rebounded to knock off UMass Boston by 39 points two days later, however. Thomas’ absence could be a blessing in disguise for some of the younger players such as Shawn Jones – who is averaging 15.0 points and 3.5 assists in his absense. Up next for UML are home games against Marist (Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.) and Cornell (Sunday at 1 p.m.)
- Boston University (0-1, 3) – There isn’t much to go off of to gauge BU this season, as its only played one game. But in that one game, the loss to Northeastern, Cedric Hankerson accounted for just 10 points on 4 of 12 shooting. In 30 minutes, starting forward Tyler Scanlon didn’t score a single point. Someone has to step up. Albany comes to town Monday at 7 p.m. before the Terriers hit the road for a date with UConn on Sunday at 6 p.m.
- Holy Cross (1-0, 7) – Crusaders started their season with a 69-64 win over Sacred Heart behind 23 points from Karl Charles. The Pioneers are not a great ballclub, so it’s tough to advance Holy Cross any further from where it sat last week. Its 48.1 percent shooting is cause for optimism though. After the Harvard tilt, the Crusaders hit the road for a Sunday matinee game at 1 p.m. against Rhode Island.
Power rankings are decided with the help of several factors: record, strength of schedule, and record against top-tier opponents. The colleges in our coverage area include: Boston College, Boston University, Harvard, Holy Cross, Northeastern, UMass and UMass Lowell. Power rankings will be published on Mondays, with the exception of the first and last game of the year, throughout the season.