One through five is a carry forward from last week however 6 through 12 or 13 is a "pick 'em" in action parlance. Interested to get readers takes on their picks 6 through whatever and why. There are numerous permutations and combinations that could be easily justified.
#1 Carleton (26-0, 19-0) (LW: #1) Incredibly, one RPI has the Ravens tied for second win Cape Breton, which has lost 6 games and behind UBC which has lost 2 including one home game. Regardless, if the Ravens continue to win through the rest of the regular season and playoffs, there should be no denying them the #1 seed at the Nationals (although we are a long way from that). Carleton is likely to get one of their firmer tests as they travel to downtown Toronto this weekend to meet the Varsity Blues on Friday and Ryerson Rams on Saturday. 6'6" Tyson Hinz has emerged as an OUA East Player-of-the-Year candidate.
#2 UBC (21-2, 18-2) (LW: #2) "Train kept a rollin'" is an old blues song covered by Aerosmith on Get Your Wings (1975) and there are no better ways to describe what UBC is doing to Canada West opponents recently. The Thunderbirds are sure to be tested however the Birds and Carleton appear to be the top 2 teams in the country currently and, possibly looking a bit too far ahead, anticipating a rematch of the CIS championship game in 2009 in Halifax this March is reasonable.
#3 Cape Breton (17-6, 16-1) (LW: #3) With 6'1" Jimmy Dorsey nursing a shoulder injury, fellow Maryland native 6'3" Paris Carter, took over, scoring 46 on 10-20 from 3 point land to basically clinch first-place for the Capers. CBU has three 4 point games remaining, home-and-home against UNB and home to UPEI. Capers will be the #1 seed at the AUS tournament in early March at the Metro Center in Halifax.
#4 Saskatchewan (23-4, 16-4) (LW: #4) Jamelle Barrett set the school record for assists and was the team's leading scorer in the sweep against Alberta. Huskies are guard-oriented and Sask struggled somewhat with Barrett in foul trouble, so back court depth remains a concern however in Barrett and 6'1" Rejean Chabot, Dogs have arguably the most experienced and talented backcourt in Canada West.
#5 Trinity Western (20-3, 19-3) (LW: #5) Spartans have dominated lesser opponents however the spectre of going just 1-3 at home against their two main Canada West rivals UBC and Saskatchewan will continue to be a monkey on their backs. Assuming UBC sweeps TRU this weekend and then gets a split at UVic, TWU will likely meet Saskatchewan in the Canada West semi-finals, assuming both teams get there.
#6 Lakehead (19-10, 14-4) (LW: #6) Spots 6 thru 10 are virtually impossible to completely justify, beginning with T-Wolves who were sixth last week but lost at Waterloo on Friday before rebounding in decent fashion on Saturday. Anything less than a pair of wins at home this weekend vs. 8-10 Brock will impact this ranking. Lakehead tries to draw closer to clinching a first-round playoff bye in the race with Laurier (Hawks own the tie-breaker) and Windsor (Lakehead owns the tie-breaker).
#7 Dalhousie (16-8, 10-5) (LW: NR) Probably a bit rich with jumping the previously-unranked Tigers all the way to number seven however Dal definitely deserves to be ranked ahead of conference-rival St. FX given the 20 point win over X-Men on Saturday and the sweep of the season series. Tigers have all but clinched second place with 3 weeks left on the AUS schedule. Dal is defending with much more purpose and is getting all-conference performances from their two best players, 6'1" Simon Farine and 6'9" Joe Schow, who both appear to peaking at the proper time in their fifth and final seasons.
#8 St. FX (21-6, 10-5) (LW: #7) X has lost 2 in a row and is only 3-3 in their past 6 games yet they remain a dangerous team given their fire power. The loss to injury of 6'3" Dwayne Johnson and 6'5" Chad Warren has exposed an area of weakness defending in the paint as Dalhousie continually exposed on Saturday night. Tigers got to the rim at will with little challenge from X's remaining front line - expect the returns of Johnson and Warren to alleviate that issue. Christian T-Bear Upshaw has struggled with his consistency and hasn't shown that positive spark that marked his AUS POY/All-Canadian season in 2009-10.
#9 Toronto (20-7, 14-5) (LW: NR) The Blues win 20 games for yet another season, something which few would have predicted in early October. Toronto has won 7 of the past 8 games and have a chance to further justify this re-insertion into the Top 10 with a pair of home games this coming weekend vs. Carleton on Friday and resurgent Ottawa on Saturday. The Blues have clinched second place in the OUA East.
#10 Windsor (14-8, 12-6) (LW: #8) Broke a four-game losing streak with a very important win at home over Laurier as the Lancers re-emerged as contenders for a first round OUA West playoff bye. Hawks and Lancers meet again in Waterloo on Saturday. Lancers have been especially porous on the defensive end during the recent drought but when 6'3" Isaac Kuon gets it going offensively, he can carry his team which he showed on Saturday against Laurier.
Dropped out of Top 10:
Alberta (15-9, 14-8) (LW: #9)
Laval (15-7, 9-3) (LW: #10)
Also Honourable Mention:
Laurier (15-9, 12-6) (LW: NR)
Victoria (16-9, 15-7) (LW: NR)