Posted: Monday December 11, 2006 11:40AM; Updated: Monday December 11, 2006 12:23PM
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NCAA Basketball Power Rankings
Connecticut Huskies (6-0)
It doesn't matter who it is, if you hold a team to 26 points, you're pretty darn good. That's what the Huskies did their last time out in an 84-26 win against Georgetown. Good thing they got time to rest from that run-and-gun affair. Seriously, though, Connecticut is showing signs it's ready to get back to the Final Four.
Next three: 12/18 at Virginia; 12/21 vs. Colorado State; 12/23 vs. Oakland at HCC
Arizona State Sun Devils (8-1)
The Sun Devils have won four straight since a nine-point loss to Tennessee. Although no one is putting up gaudy numbers (Emily Westerberg leads the team with 16.1 points per game), Arizona State is averaging 80.3 points. It's a balanced offense that takes advantage of opponents' mistakes. Teams are turning the ball over 23 times a game.
Next three: 12/14 at UC-Irvine; 12/18 vs. Texas Tech at Phoenix; 12/22 vs. Arizona
LSU Tigers (10-1)
It's a big jump for the Tigers, but they've made big strides since losing at Baylor. And, I can admit, I probably underestimated their chances without Seimone Augustus. It looks as though they're coming together pretty well. As long as veterans like Erica White provide support on the perimeter, LSU will be just fine. The Tigers showed that on Sunday with their second straight win over Ohio State.
Next three: 12/17 at Michigan State; 12/20 vs. McNeese State; 12/30 vs. Louisiana Tech at New Orleans
Baylor Lady Bears (9-1)
No one will confuse the recent stretch of Baylor's schedule with that of Tennessee, but it should pay off for the Bears as they grow more confident with each win. They're already better than most people gave them credit for after losing All-America Sophia Young. Of course, they do have a pretty good leader in coach Kim Mulkey.
Next three: 12/13 vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff; 12/17 at UCLA; 12/28 vs. North Carolina A&T
Ohio State Buckeyes (7-1)
In their toughest test of the early season, the Buckeyes came up well short against LSU -- 20 points short. LSU managed to do something few teams can. They slowed down Jessica Davenport. It isn't often that teams slow both Davenport and guard Brandie Hoskins.
Next three: 12/16 vs. Alabama A&M; 12/17 vs. Howard; 12/20 at Oklahoma