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Xavier power rankings, week eight

It's a new week which means a new set of the only rankings Xavier is likely to appear in until they stop losing to teams like DePaul every time they leave Cintas.

Pictured: Justin Martin's scholarship spot.
Pictured: Justin Martin's scholarship spot.
Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

We're now eight weeks into the Xavier power rankings, and things continue to shuffle. Keep in mind that this is not an ordering of which players are necessarily performing the best right now, just which players I think would be hardest to replace this year if they got sick/injured/deemed ineligible. If a guy is not setting the world on fire but he has no reasonable backup, he's going to move up the list over a guy playing in a position of depth.

With that refresher, let's get right into it. My first draft after the DePaul debacle had a 13-way tie for dead last.

13. Makinde London
I almost moved him up just based on the fact that he didn't have a hand in losing to DePaul.

12. Edmond Sumner
I hope Ed is making the best use of his time off and that his knees are allowing him to practice enough to learn the system, because it's starting to feel a lot like we're going to need him at the point guard position next season.

11. Larry Austin, Jr.
Austin continues to come on briefly at the end of the half to play defense while protecting more vital players from foul trouble. Meanwhile, Justin Martin is getting about a third as many minutes at SMU this year as he did at X last year. I may never understand exactly what went on there, but I'm fairly sure it was bad for Martin and the Musketeers.

10. Brandon Randolph
In two games, Brandon Randolph played a total of 12 minutes, threw up an 0-2/0-0/0-0 shooting line and a total game line of 0/1/0. This during a week in which Dee Davis was okay without being inspiring and Myles Davis got some run at the point guard. Xavier could have really used a backup point guard this week, and Coach Mack chose not to go to Randolph with those minutes.

9. Sean O'Mara
O'Mara climbs a spot this week while getting one minute of playing time. Doing nothing is sometimes better than the somethings other people do.

8. James Farr
Farr had a really good game in the midweek fixture against Georgetown, getting on the glass, blocking shots, and banging home a couple of jumpers. Then he lost his starting job against DePaul, played only four minutes, and had Coach Mack dodging questions about why in the post-game presser. I thought James was coming on after that Wednesday game, but now I'm back to being confused.

7. JP Macura
The case for Macura is this: he brings the constant threat of an offensive explosion, puts pressure on defensive rebounders while crashing the glass, and plays the passing lanes aggressively. The counterpoint is that he can't really defend on the ball, but it's hard to say that he's unique in that flaw at this point.

6. Jalen Reynolds
If he has success with his first few touches in a game, Jalen can go off for 15 points. If he doesn't, he seems to shrink from trying to be an offensive force in the game. Xavier needs him to be productive enough to keep big-to-big doubles off of Matt Stainbrook; as long as his entire game is dictated by his early returns, that isn't happening.

5. Myles Davis
We all know Myles can score. Myles knows Myles can score. Sometimes Myles seems a little too eager to prove that he can score. Generally speaking, semi-contested threes from a couple of steps behind the arc are available at just about any point in the shot clock. Myles has a habit of settling for them early in possessions, which is great only if they go in. Defense is also still a work in progress for him.

4. Trevon Bluiett
Bluiett snapped out of a long funk so deep that he was missing wide-open layups with a monstrous 19-point second half against DePaul. Whatever switch got flipped at halftime in Chicago needs to stay flipped this week for Xavier. The Muskies probably need to win both of their games this week, and that's not going to be easy if Bluiett slides back into offensive miasma.

3. Dee Davis
Yes, I know he turns the ball over in silly ways, especially early in games. Yes, I know he is too fond of driving into traffic. Look down the bench and tell me who is going to replace him. I'm going to have a hard time having faith in our backup point guards until Coach Mack demonstrates that he does.

2. Matt Stainbrook
Like Kenny Frease before him, Matt Stainbrook is dependent on the efforts of his teammates to get him the basketball. He performed admirably against Georgetown despite fighting the twin nauseating forces of illness and Joshua Smith, but he didn't get enough touches against DePaul's weak inside defense. He wasn't at his best Saturday, but he should have gotten more opportunities to make something happen.

1. Remy Abell
Until someone else demonstrates an ability to defend the perimeter, this is Remy's spot to lose. Throw in the fact that he's growing to be a more assertive force on the offensive end while remaining fairly efficient and that he does all this while almost never committing a foul and you have the least replaceable player on the Xavier roster.