Oh, BYU. You almost helped me go 4-1 last weekend with a respectable effort against Gonzaga. Harvard racked up only 46 on the road against Arizona State. That didn't help. A pair of misses, but better than my previous efforts.
So let's see what happens this week. It can only get better from here, right?
Last week: 3-2
No. 6 Villanova at Seton Hall, 12 p.m. ET, Saturday, Fox Sports 1: Isaiah Whitehead's foot injury came at a bad time. The talented freshman could miss an opening Big East slate that includes matchups against Villanova, Creighton (in Omaha, Nebraska), Xavier (in Cincinnati) and Butler. But the Pirates are confident after upsetting No. 15 St. John's on Wednesday night. Sterling Gibbs and Angel Delgado must continue to carry Seton Hall, especially against a talented Villanova squad. The Wildcats are 14th in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency against a top-100 schedule (BPI). Seton Hall can't afford many mistakes against JayVaughn Pinkston & Co.
Prediction: Villanova 68, Seton Hall 58
No. 22 Baylor at No. 18 Oklahoma, 4 p.m. ET, Saturday, ESPNU: Baylor has been overlooked within the conversation about Big 12 contenders, even though the BPI (20th), Ken Pomeroy (12th) and the polls all like the Bears. But wins over Memphis, Texas Southern and South Carolina aren't exactly signature victories. This could be the tightest Big 12 race in years. And Baylor has a chance to prove it belongs in the mix with a win at Oklahoma. Good luck with that, though. The Sooners are ranked fifth in adjusted defensive efficiency, their opponents are only shooting 28 percent from the 3-point line and they boast a strong frontcourt.
Prediction: Oklahoma 72, Baylor 65
Arizona State at No. 8 Arizona, 7 p.m. ET, Sunday, Fox Sports 1: Last season, Arizona State defeated its archrival, Arizona, in double overtime on Valentine's Day. But this is a new Sun Devils squad. Recent tweaks sent Gerry Blakes to point guard and the midseason addition of Savon Goodman has been a spark on offense. So the team that defeated Detroit by 39 last week and Harvard by 10 last weekend was different (and better) than the one that lost to Lehigh and Marquette in the weeks prior to those wins. But Arizona is Arizona, even after that upset loss at UNLV, and the Wildcats will be at home. Arizona State can't handle a team that stretches the floor the way Sean Miller's program will Sunday.
Prediction: Arizona 83, Arizona State 69
UNLV at No. 13 Kansas, 4:30 p.m. ET, Sunday, CBS: The Runnin' Rebels didn't handle success well after they defeated Arizona two days before Christmas. On Wednesday, they lost to Wyoming despite making 48 percent of their 3-point attempts. But their offense was essentially the Rashad Vaughn-Christian Wood Show (17-for-28 combined). If those two get hot, there could be trouble in Lawrence, Kansas. But Perry Ellis, Cliff Alexander and Jamari Traylor will pressure Wood and Frank Mason, and Wayne Selden Jr. will harass Vaughn. They're UNLV's only consistent weapons on offense (172nd in adjusted efficiency, per Ken Pomeroy). This will be a good win for a Kansas team that needs momentum as it prepares to enter a tough Big 12.
Prediction: Kansas 67, UNLV 62
No. 21 Washington at Stanford, 10 p.m. ET, Sunday, ESPNU: Last season, Stanford reached the Sweet 16, a run that elevated expectations on the program. So a 15-point loss at DePaul on Nov. 30 was confusing. The Cardinal didn't look the part of a Sweet 16 squad with its eyes on the Pac-12 race then. A road win over Texas, however, was big for Johnny Dawkins' program. With Chasson Randle leading a top-30 offense, Stanford can compete with the best in the league. Washington is a contender, too. Nigel Williams-Goss is one of America's top point guards. But this weekend's slate (the Huskies face Cal on Friday) will be the first time this season Washington has left Seattle for a true road game. It gets real now. This ain't Stony Brook.
Prediction: Stanford 70, Washington 65