Florida remains unanimous No. 1; Duke drops out
New York, NY (Sports Network) – Florida remained a unanimous choice as the No.
1 team in men’s college basketball, according to the latest Associated Press
men’s poll, while Duke dropped out of the rankings for the first time in 11
Florida (23-2) received all 72 first-place votes and 1,800 total points from a
nationwide media panel for the second consecutive week. The defending champion
Gators have won 16 in a row, including a 64-61 triumph at Kentucky on
Duke, meanwhile, has lost four straight for the first time since 1996 and is
unranked for the first time since the conclusion of the 1995-96 campaign. The
Blue Devils, who were 16th last week and lost to North Carolina and Maryland,
had been ranked for 200 consecutive weeks — the second-longest run behind
UCLA’s 221 straight.
Ohio State is second this week, followed by Wisconsin and North Carolina. All
three teams moved up one spot as UCLA dropped three places to fifth. The
Bruins were beaten on Saturday by West Virginia, which moved into the rankings
at No. 23.
Texas A&M, Pittsburgh, Memphis, Kansas and Washington State complete the top
10. Washington State moved up four spots from 14th. Memphis and UCLA now share
the distinction of the longest active run in the rankings at 34 weeks.
The second 10 features Nevada, Marquette, Butler, Georgetown, Oregon, Southern
Illinois, Air Force, Oklahoma State, Arizona and Kentucky.
Georgetown had the biggest jump within the poll, vaulting eight spots from
22nd. The Hoyas have won seven in a row, including a 76-58 rout of Marquette
Boston College, Southern California, West Virginia, Indiana and Alabama are
the last five teams ranked this week.
Alabama had the biggest fall within the poll, barely holding off Duke by eight
points for the last spot. The Crimson Tide had been ranked 18th, but lost to
Ole Miss on Saturday.
Boston College is back in the poll after being ranked earlier this season. The
Eagles have won four in a row since a January 28 loss to Duke and will host
the Blue Devils on Wednesday before welcoming North Carolina to Conte Forum on
West Virginia has won five of its last six, including Saturday’s 70-65 triumph
over UCLA, to move back into the rankings after a brief stint earlier this
season. The only loss for the Mountaineers in that stretch came last Wednesday
Indiana is also back in the poll after a two-week absence. The Hoosiers had a
one-week stay in late January.
In addition to Duke, Vanderbilt and Stanford also dropped out. Vandy was 23rd,
but lost at Tennessee on Saturday in its lone game of the week, while Stanford
was 25th and suffered losses at Washington State and Washington.
Games involving a pair of ranked teams this week include Wednesday’s SEC
matchup between Alabama and Florida in Gainesville and a Thursday Pac-10
battle between Southern California and Arizona in Tucson. Arizona will also
host UCLA on Saturday, while Alabama and Kentucky will meet in Tuscaloosa.
Also Saturday, a bracket-buster matchup of top-25 teams pits Southern Illinois