Iowa freshman Joe Wieskamp hit an amazing game-winning shot against Rutgers. You wouldn't be able to tell that by his postgame demeanor. Watch: Mark Emmert, email@example.com
Iowa basketball's flair for the dramatic may be winning it some Big Ten Conference games and some "SportsCenter" highlight time, but it sure isn't creating any spark among national poll voters.
The Hawkeyes' latest eye-popping buzzer-beater Saturday at Rutgers was Iowa's lone chance to impress on the floor this past week, and Joe Wieskamp's kiss off the corner of the backboard didn't resonate in the rankings. Fran McCaffery's squad actually dropped two spots in the USA TODAY Coaches' Poll (which the Register and Hawk Central use as their priority rankings system), to 19th from No. 17.
Iowa (20-5, 9-5) held fast at 21st in The Associated Press poll, but the Hawkeyes lost points in the poll, dropping from 399 to 389. Each voter's top 25 ranking assigns 25 points to the first-place team, and so on and so forth through until the 25th-place team gets a single point.
The best measurement for the Hawkeyes' perception can be the distance between their ranking and the next few spots above them. Last week, a No. 21 ranking in the AP poll meant being 45 points from 18th, for example. This week, being 21st puts Iowa 118 points adrift of 18th.
Iowa State, meanwhile, made the most of its single game last week, roughing up then-No. 18 Kansas State to keep its hope at a Big 12 Conference title alive. The Cyclones (19-5, 8-4) were rewarded for their win by leapfrogging the Hawkeyes in the AP, to 19th from 23rd.
Steve Prohm's bunch didn't quite jump the Hawkeyes in the coaches' poll, moving up two rungs to 20th.
Both teams have multiple chances to shine their resumes this week. Iowa hosts No. 25 Maryland on Tuesday (7 p.m., Big Ten Network) in a game with considerable implications in the league standings before another Carver-Hawkeye Arena contest Friday against Indiana (8 p.m., FS1).
Iowa State hopes to eliminate Baylor (16-9, 7-5) from the league title discussion with Tuesday's 8 p.m. game at Hilton Coliseum before traveling to TCU in a 1 p.m. Saturday revenge tilt.
Both of the Cyclones' games will be on ESPN2.