15-0 start? Check. Power Five conference? Check. Multiple double-digit wins over ranked competition? Check, check, check.
Despite all this, Michigan was unable to seize the top spot in either the AP, USA Today Coaches or NET rankings this week.
In the AP Poll, the unbeaten Wolverines continue to trail Duke (12-1) for the No. 1 slot. The Blue Devils’ lone blemish came courtesy of No. 5 Gonzaga 89-87 at the Maui Invitational.
This past week, John Beilein’s bunch notched two double-digit victories, including Sunday’s 74-63 decision over No. 22 Indiana. For comparison’s sake, the Blue Devils routed the Hoosiers 90-69 at home in late November in the Big Ten-ACC Challenge.
Rounding out the top-five is No. 3 Tennessee and No. 4 Virginia, currently undefeated at 13-0. Michigan State is the only other Big Ten team in the top-10, sliding in at sixth.
The coaches kept Michigan at No. 4, just behind Tennessee. They swapped previously top-ranked Duke with Virginia, as the Cavaliers impressed with a 65-52 triumph over then-No. 9 Florida State.
The NET, or NCAA Evaluation Tool, placed the Wolverines at third, still behind No. 1 Virginia and No. 2 Duke.
This week’s slate of games could finally boost Michigan to the top spot. The Wolverines visit 4-11 Illinois Thursday, and return to Crisler Center Sunday against 10-5 Northwestern.
Meanwhile, both the Cavaliers and Blue Devils hit the road twice this week. The former travels to Boston College Wednesday, and Clemson Saturday. The latter, led by freshman star Zion Williamson, treks to Wake Forest Tuesday, and then No. 13 Florida State Saturday.
The last time Michigan was ranked No. 1 in any poll was 2013 (Associated Press).