Please don't go to a law school based on public perception. The only perception that matters is what the lawyers think, which is largely based on US News. This is why we (lawyers) rely on US News; its the only real benchmark we have, even though it is flawed.
As the saying goes, perception is reality. I think most lawyers in the Twin Cities still view the four law schools like this:
1. U of M
2. William Mitchell
3. UST (closing fast)