Overall Rank: #67
It was billed as the college basketball game that would drag people away from college football on New Year's Day, and the matchup between West Virginia and Purdue had the look of a stellar contest on paper. But in the flesh the Boilermakers put together a virtuoso performance in whipping the Mountaineers in West Lafayette 77-62. And to be fair the game really wasn't that close despite WVU going into the locker room down by just five (37-32) at the half.
The MVC race is always up for grabs, and perhaps another surprise team like UNI lurks. Perhaps no league has as much parity as the Valley, where even the bottom teams are improved.
Northern Iowa, which returns all five starters after sharing the regular-season title with Creighton last year, earned 38 of 39 first-place votes in the survey of league coaches, beat writers, sports information directors and play-by-play men.