Wichita State cracks top 10
Arizona is No. 1 in The Associated Press Top 25 poll for the third straight week.
Associated Press Poll
The top five teams in the AP Top 25 men's college basketball poll:
The Wildcats (12-0) were a runaway choice again Monday, receiving 63 first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel.
Syracuse drew the other No. 1 votes and was No. 2, as the top eight teams held their spots from last week. Ohio State is third followed by Wisconsin, Michigan State, Louisville, Oklahoma State and Villanova. Duke drops to ninth after it was tied for eighth last week with Villanova.
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"It just clicked," said senior guard James "Tahj" Bell, who has gone from averaging 2.4 points per game as a freshman to 16.1 as a senior. "We've all been through a season together. We know where we like the ball, what each other is going to do on defense. We know that the little things matter. It's all of that."
Wichita State is No. 10, its first top-10 ranking since spending two weeks at No. 8 in December 2006. The Shockers, off to the best start in school history at 12-0, reached the Final Four last season but were ranked for just five weeks, the highest being 15th for a week in January.
There are nine undefeated Division I teams, and eight of them are ranked in the top 14. The other unbeaten -- Toledo (11-0) -- is unranked despite five road wins, including a 95-92 victory against Boston College. The Rockets, who haven't been ranked since the final poll of the 1978-79 season, host Coppin State on Saturday before visiting No. 15 Kansas next week.
There are nine teams remaining with perfect records of the 351 teams in Division I after five teams -- Missouri, Pitt, St. Mary's, UConn and UMass -- lost for the first time last week.
|1. Arizona||10. Wichita State|
|2. Syracuse||12. Oregon|
|3. Ohio State||14. Iowa State|
|4. Wisconsin||NR Toledo|
The number of unbeaten Division I teams took a hit last week with five teams losing for the first time. The biggest of the losses was Saint Mary's 77-71 defeat to South Carolina in the first round of the Diamond Head Classic. UMass lost by five to Florida State in the Orange Bowl Classic.
The others were very close. Connecticut lost 53-51 to Stanford, Pittsburgh lost 44-43 to Cincinnati, and Missouri lost to Illinois 65-64.
One more team is guaranteed to be booted from the ranks of the unbeaten this week, as Villanova will visit Syracuse on Saturday.
Tennessee State escaped the ranks of the winless with a 108-85 victory over Fisk. Two teams -- Cornell (0-11) and Grambling State (0-6) -- have yet to win a game this season.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.