College basketball rankings mean very little, especially in early December. Unlike football, there is no need to jockey for position to be in the top five of the country if you have championship aspirations. It simply does not matter where you are ranked, as long as you make the field of
64,65,68. Still, as fans, we like to know where teams stack up with one another, and it makes for good conversation throughout the season.
Pitt started the year unranked and still find themselves without a number next to their name a few weeks later into the season. The Panthers have raced out to an 8-0 start, and have looked impressive in doing so. Sure, we know Pitt does not play an exceptional non league schedule this year, but with past reputations, it would not be crazy to think Pitt would have snuck into the rankings by now.
The voters in the Coaches and AP Polls have Pitt ranked 30th and 31st, respectively. Those rankings match with Pitt's current RPI, which is 30. The two polls are voted on by the media, and you guessed it, the coaches. I have no problem with the ranking, but I thought by now Pitt may have crept into the rankings, and here is why: The computer polls love Pitt. I mean, they absolutely love this Pitt team.
The Sagrain rankings explain in detail the meaning behind their rankings, and they come up with Pitt being ranked eighth in the country, ahead of teams like Kansas, Memphis, Syracuse, and Michigan State. The Ken Pom rankings also fancy this Pitt team, as they have Pitt as the fourth best team in the land.
Now I do not believe the computers that Pitt is currently a top ten team, and neither do most living things. College basketball rankings are determined by humans, and Pitt certainly should have some skeptics, especially until they beat some teams of substance. Pitt is 1-0 this week with a win over Penn State, and should finish the week with two wins, barring an upset to Loyola Marymount tonight. I doubt that those wins will do enough to move Pitt into the rankings, so the Panthers will continue to wait for their first listing in the top 25 at least one more week.