National rankings aren't particularly meaningful in the present. They are things for fans to get excited about, and for a program that's wallowed in mediocrity (or worse) for a long while, it's something to tout.
But ultimately, they don't matter on the floor, and they don't matter to the NCAA tournament selection committee.
Years down the road, though, they provide a wonderful way of dividing things up to find "first time since ..." statistics. And those, while not especially meaningful either, can provide mild entertainment on a slow day.
Hence this post. Maryland is ranked No. 12 nationally and plays host to Minnesota on Saturday. Georgetown is No. 25 (for now, anyway, after its loss to Xavier on Wednesday) and welcomes Creighton to the Verizon Center on Saturday.
It's the first time in more than five years both teams will play home games as ranked teams on the same day.
It's the first time in almost eight years (well, 7 years and 10 months, precisely) that both played conference home games as ranked teams on the same day.
And it's only the 12th time since 2000 that two schools located inside the Capital Beltway have played home games as ranked teams on the same day.
The last time three pulled it off? It appears to have never happened. But with George Washington playing a home game on the same day that Georgetown and Maryland do only once this season (Jan. 17) and the Colonials stuck at seven points in the AP poll, that occurrence will probably have to wait for another year.
The full list of days when two ranked teams played at home inside the Capital Beltway this century:
Nov. 17, 2009
No. 19 Georgetown over Temple 46-45
No. 25 Maryland over Fairfield 71-42
March 3, 2007
No. 9 Georgetown over Connecticut 59-46
No. 24 Maryland over N.C. State 79-59
Feb. 22, 2006
No. 6 George Washington over La Salle 77-65
No. 23 Georgetown over Rutgers 66-50
Feb. 5, 2006
No. 10 George Washington over Richmond 80-55
No. 17 Georgetown over Pitt 61-58
Jan. 28, 2006
No. 14 George Washington over Rhode Island 81-62
No. 21 Georgetown over Cincinnati 76-57
Nov. 30, 2005
No. 19 George Washington over St. Francis (Pa.) 85-68
No. 23 Maryland over Minnesota 83-66
Nov. 24, 2001
No. 6 Maryland over Delaware State 77-53
No. 16 Georgetown over Towson 91-40
Feb. 24, 2001
No. 20 Maryland over Oklahoma 68-60
No. 21 Georgetown over Syracuse 72-61
Jan. 27, 2001
Duke over No. 8 Maryland 98-96
Notre Dame over No. 10 Georgetown 78-71
Jan. 10, 2001
No. 12 Georgetown over Morgan State 86-68
North Carolina over No. 14 Maryland 86-83
Jan. 6, 2001
No. 17 Maryland over Georgia Tech 93-80
No. 19 Georgetown over Seton Hall 78-66