League play now has two weeks under its belt as we begin to see how these teams stack up against one another. The top and bottom of the standings seem to be pretty concrete while the middle of the pack is a complete toss-up.
Power rankings are based on games played through January 14th.
Note: National rankings are courtesy of KenPom.com. Arrows denote movement in power rankings since last ranking.
1. Liberty 18-1, 4-0 #45
Liberty continues to roll along, winning its first four ASUN games by an average margin of 17 points. The regular season title is virtually guaranteed to the Flames, who are given a 94.9% chance as winning it, according to TeamRankings. The only interesting things to watch for throughout January and February may be to see how soon Liberty clinches the regular season title and if the Flames are unable to go unbeaten through league play.
This week: 1/18 vs Lipscomb
2. North Florida 10-9, 3-1 #189
It looked like the Ospreys would attempt to be this year’s Liberty by challenging the Flames for a regular season title like LU did to Lipscomb last season. UNF still could, but losing at home to an NJIT home by double figures is sure to come back to haunt them. Big matchup looming on January 23rd in Jacksonville between the top 2 teams in the league.
This week: 1/16 @ Jacksonville
3. North Alabama 7-10, 2-2 #263
Behind Liberty and North Alabama, there are several schools that could stake a claim to being the 3rd best team. It looked like Lipscomb, then Jacksonville, but UNA’s two losses both came against the Flames and Ospreys and they challenged Liberty unlike any other ASUN team has been able to do so far this season.The job Tony Pujol has been able to do at the D2 startup has been impressive.
This week: 1/16 vs Stetson, 1/18 vs FGCU
4. FGCU 5-14, 2-2 #319
The Eagles also have losses to Liberty and UNF, but we rank their wins slightly behind UNA as they needed overtime to defeat Stetson on the road this past weekend. At times this season, FGCU has looked like they may belong closer to the cellar of these power rankings, but they’ve had a strong start to league play with their most winnable game of the ASUN season coming up on Thursday.
This week: 1/16 vs Kennesaw State, 1/18 @ North Alabama
5. Jacksonville 8-10, 1-2 #215
Jacksonville is another team that could lay claim to being the third best team in the conference. David Bell is as good a post player as there is in the league. If he had another helping hand (JD Notae), they could have challenged to be in the top group in the league and certainly 3rd best. Winnable game and a big test Thursday night at home against the Ospreys.
This week: 1/16 vs North Florida, 1/18 vs Stetson
6. Lipscomb 7-10, 2-2 #262
The Bison had a chance to cement itself as the 3rd place team on Saturday but they lost at home to North Alabama by 13. Plus, their wins have come against Stetson and Kennesaw State. We should know a lot more about Lennie Acuff’s squad by the end of the weekend as Lipscomb has two challenging road contests.
This week: 1/16 @ NJIT, 1/18 @ Liberty
7. NJIT 4-12, 1-2 #280
The Highlanders shocked everybody with their win at North Florida, especially after getting trounced by both Liberty and Jacksonville to open ASUN play. NJIT has a chance to turn its season around with that win and a couple of winnable home games this week.
This week: 1/16 vs Lipscomb, 1/18 vs Kennesaw State
8. Stetson 7-11, 1-2 #327
All three of Stetson’s ASUN games have been decided by 4 points or less, including Saturday’s overtime loss to FGCU. To say the Hatters are much more competitive under first year head coach Donnie James would be quite the understatement. Still, wins may be few and far between.
This week: 1/16 @ North Alabama, 1/18 @ Jacksonville
9. Kennesaw State 1-15, 0-3 #346
How Kennesaw State beat Gardner-Webb by 24 points for their only win so far this season is a mystery we may never know. They did compete with Stetson, falling by only 3 points at home, but the Owls other two ASUN games have been a 19 point loss at home to North Florida and a 12 point road loss to Lipscomb.
This week: 1/16 @ FGCU, 1/18 @ NJIT