Commentary: Rewards ranked the top 5 teams in both polls in its own top 6, and the top 20 teams in the polls also finished roughly in Rewards' top 20 as well, though a few unlikely teams received votes in those polls. For instance, Indiana was ranked as the #39 team by Rewards (finishing 12-10), but they were voted #10/#12 probably because they won their last 5 games, and one of those was over Michigan State (16-6, #17 in the AP, and tied for #19 in the UPI), and they did end up winning the Big 10 Conference, so perhaps the voters were weighting games at the end of the season more heavily (than Rewards). Wyoming (13-13) garnered enough coaches' votes to finish in a tie for 19th place in the UPI poll (with MSU) but they lost their last game, and were mediocre at best (with their .500 record). I would think that there must have been some other teams more worthy than they!
The Kentucky Wildcats moved up from #12 to #8 after winning the NCAA tournament, but their 6 losses prevented Rewards from promoting them any further up in its rankings. (Temple moved up to #1 after defeating Kansas State in the NCAA consolation game because KSU was the "top" team according to the Power Ratings System - when using a margin of victory of 1 point - which is one of the primary components used by Rewards when it determines its rating values.) Teams above Kentucky had between 2 and 5 losses in all. However, NIT Champion Xavier did move up somewhat in the final rankings produced by Rewards: from #58 to #41 .
(This page last modified February 17, 2010 .)