Ivy Power Rankings – Mar. 1, 2016

1. Princeton (20-5, 10-1 Ivy)

It’s Princeton’s versatility that gives the Tigers a better chance to win in a potential NCAA Tournament berth than Yale, or indeed, most mid-majors. What matters most in an Ivy playoff is that Princeton’s offense matches up well with Yale’s defense, complete with multiple sharpshooters and slashers that can use the Elis’ size advantage against them.

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Mar. 1, 2016

Ivy Power Rankings – Feb. 23, 2016

1. Princeton (18-5, 9-1 Ivy)
The Tigers have it all on the table. Princeton’s toughest game remaining, according to KenPom, will be at Harvard next weekend, not hosting Columbia Friday night. But Princeton’s lowest win probability, which comes visiting the Crimson, is still 75 percent. To take advantage of a favorable schedule, Princeton must continue firing on all cylinders offensively, which means getting the most out of X-factor Amir Bell, whose effective field goal percentage has been solid ever since he dominated in the Ivy opener at the Palestra.

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Feb. 23, 2016

Ivy Power Rankings – Feb. 9, 2016

McCoy and Spock

The Ivy hoops fan base is a small and select group. Unlike other colleges (and I use the term extremely judiciously for most institutions located outside The Eight) there are few zealots.  However, there are two who deserve a certain amount of praise. Thus I would like to dedicate this Power Poll to two of the stalwarts of our avocation, namely, Michael James (@Ivybball)   and the Cornell Basketball Blog. They both add a certain dimension to the analysis of watching Ivy hoops and they couldn’t be more different. Their occasional domestic spats on social media are legendary — the cool, calculating number-cruncher versus the overly emotional and often fairly delusional Big Red fan.  One, a haughty winner in the recent Ivy rooting sweepstakes and the other, a “we try harder” guy who still wishes beyond any reasonable hope that it was still 2009 and Jeff Foote was roaming the Ithaca post. In essence, these two play the Spock and McCoy respectively in Ivy hoops coverage to my omniscient, gallant, rational, and let’s be fair, womanizing, Kirk.  With these two in mind, and six games into the 14-Game Tournament, here is my usual Penn-centric IHO power poll.

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Feb. 9, 2016

Ivy Power Rankings – Feb. 2, 2016

1. Yale (13-5, 4-0 Ivy)
The Elis have been getting everything they want lately. Brandon Sherrod’s perfect streak from the floor has been well-documented, but what makes Yale so dangerous is that the production can come from anywhere. Nick Victor, the quiet glue of the team, is capable of providing critical points as he has against Princeton and Brown so far in league play, and Sam Downey ranks fifth in the nation in individual offensive rating. To beat Yale, you have to spread the Bulldogs out defensively and hope they’re not too hot on the other end of the floor. Columbia can do that, and Princeton did do that, but Yale just wasn’t cool enough to lose to the Tigers. Like last season, Yale’s biggest games down the stretch will come on the road, with six of its last eight games away from New Haven, including a season-ending showdown at Levien on Mar. 5. The time to build a cushion is now.

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Feb. 2, 2016

Ivy Power Rankings – Jan. 26, 2016

The best thing about this week of Ivy action is it’s the first full weekend of league play. Now that all Ivies except the Ps have squared off with their travel partners twice, we get beyond those singular matchups and into the grueling back-to-backs that give the conference its identity. In other words, this is when we start to find out definitively who the contenders really are.

  1. Yale (11-5, 2-0 Ivy)

The Bulldogs lived up to their reputation of trouncing lesser competition, bruising Brown in Providence with frontcourt depth. It’s got to be really encouraging that forwards Brandon Sherrod and Sam Downey combined for 42 points on 17-for-20 shooting with Justin Sears plagued with foul trouble. It’s hard to judge the Elis too much by their offensive efficiency against the Ivy League’s most porous defense, but this was a certifiably strong performance. Yale’s defense is the best in the conference. Yale is the best rebounding team in the conference. Let’s keep the analysis simple here – those facts mean a lot.

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Jan. 26, 2016

Ivy Power Rankings – Dec. 15, 2015

AQ Bite

Yes, it’s time for another completely biased, absolutely unrealistic Penn-centric IHO Power Rankings.  Although it’s still early in the basketball season, the nonconference schedule will in no way stop me from mercilessly belittling and mocking the competition in the Ivy League. There is more fodder than usual as unfortunately no team has distinguished itself as  “Q” worthy.  So without further ado, I bring you the AQ’s “Special” IHO Power Poll.

As always, for the purists, out there here’s how the poll probably should look based on current results:

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Dec. 15, 2015

Ivy Power Rankings – Dec. 8, 2015

Now that we’re well into nonconference season, we’ve got a bead on how the Ivies are coming along so far. Our Richard Kent breaks down his Ivy power rankings. What are yours?

1. Yale (5-3) The best team by far thus far. Makai Mason is making an early case for Ivy Player of the Year, coming up big against top competition (37 points and 15 assists against SMU and Duke combined). Justin Sears is, well, Justin Sears (and the reigning Ivy POY, who has to like his chances of doing major damage to the Tigers, who he scored 53 points against in two games a year ago) after Stony Brook forward Jameel Warney dominated the Tigers in the frontcourt last week. Brandon Sherrod is a specimen after taking a year off. Should have beaten the Mustangs and were competitive at Cameron Indoor for a half.

Read moreIvy Power Rankings – Dec. 8, 2015

IHO Power Poll: Columbia homer edition

Several weeks ago, I was inspired by The Ancient Quaker’s epic power poll. If the AQ can create a ranking of the Ivy basketball teams so detached from Planet Earth that Penn would come in at No. 1, why couldn’t I do the same?

Behold, then: a totally scientific and rational power poll, with just three weekends left in the season.

I will follow the guideline established by the AQ from his power rankings: “I’ve decided to rank the teams as I see them which of course has nothing to do with reality.”

Read moreIHO Power Poll: Columbia homer edition

IHO Power Poll – Feb. 2

Ben Franklin AQIt is I, The AQ. This week I am guest hosting the IHO Power Rankings. For the purists out there, after the first back-to-back Ivy weekend, the rankings should probably look something like this:

Yale
Harvard
Princeton
Columbia
Cornell
Dartmouth
Pennsylvania
Brown

Normally, this list is dutifully accompanied by the earnest commentary and incisive statistical analysis that you’ve come to know and love from IHO. An introspection of our favorite teams that is indeed worthy of our elite educations.

For those of you expecting this, my apologies in advance. This week, since it is still early in the 14-Game Tournament and because there were no real surprises in the games last weekend, I thought it was the perfect time to switch things up a bit. (After all, you have the whole month of February to get your ORAT freak on.) Instead, I’ve decided to rank the teams as I see them which of course has nothing to do with reality. So without further ado, here is The AQ’s “Special” IHO Power Rankings for February 1, 2015.

Read moreIHO Power Poll – Feb. 2

Too early for Ivy rankings?

  1. Harvard – Despite the narrow loss to Holy Cross, they are still the cream of the crop and merit the number one spot.
  2. Yale – The Bulldogs lost to Quinnipiac without Nick Victor and with him, probably would have beaten the Bobcats on the road.
  1. Princeton – The Tigers had a nice win over Rider led by Spencer Weisz, with 18 points.
  1. Brown – The Bears stand at 1-1 and despite a blow-out loss to Northwestern, they are a talented team with Cedric Kuakumensah at the forward spot.
  1. Columbia – Obviously the early season injury to star Alex Rosenberg did not help and the Lions fell to not that strong Stony Brook by one point on the road.
  1. Penn – Tony Hicks lit it up for 31 points in a narrow loss to Delaware State. Rider handled the Quakers easily last night.
  1. Cornell – The Big Red had a strong win on the road against George Mason in what can definitely be considered an upset, not to mention their comeback win over Colgate.
  1. Dartmouth – The Big Green were blown out by St. Bonaventure but showed some life on the boards, outrebounding their foes, 41-39.Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter (@IvyHoopsOnline).