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Kentucky first, Kansas fifth in Associated Press Top 25 preseason poll

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The Kansas University basketball team does not have a single returning starter and half of the 12 scholarship players eligible this season are freshmen, but that didn’t keep the national media from ranking the Jayhawks fifth in the Associated Press preseason college basketball poll.

Kentucky edged Michigan State for the No. 1 spot. Louisville is third and Duke fourth.

Kentucky, which lost in the first round of the NIT to Robert Morris a year ago, received 27 of the 65 first-place votes and 1,546 points. Michigan State earned 22 first-place votes and 1,543 points. Louisville was ranked first on 14 ballots and Duke was No. 1 on two ballots.

Oklahoma State is tied for ninth with Syracuse and Baylor is 25th. Wichita State, with most of its players back from last season's surprise Final Four team, is ranked 16th.

Now, more than at any time in college basketball because of the one-and-done rule, the preseason ballot is the toughest one to fill out and involves so much guessing.

I put Kansas ninth on my AP ballot, based on the Jayhawks’ lack of experience, and had Kentucky sixth for the same reason.

The Preseason Top Twenty Five The Associated Press The top 25 teams in The Associated Press’ preseason college basketball poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, 2012-13 final records, total points based on 25 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 25th-place vote and 2012-13 final ranking:

  1. Kentucky (27) 1,546; 2. Michigan St. (22) 1,543; 3. Louisville (14) 1,501; 4. Duke (2) 1,435; 5. Kansas 1,357; 6. Arizona 1,311; 7. Michigan 1,120; 8t. Oklahoma St. 1,093; 8t. Syracuse 1,093; 10. Florida 1,048; 11. Ohio State 1,036; 12. North Carolina 954; 13. Memphis 741; 14. VCU 680; 15. Gonzaga 538; 16. Wichita State 512; 17. Marquette 510; 18. UConn 448; 19. Oregon 408; 20. Wisconsin 338; 21. Notre Dame 332; 22. UCLA 244; 23. New Mexico 213; 24. Virginia 189; 25. Baylor 180.

Others receiving votes: Tennessee 176, Creighton 145, Indiana 111, Colorado 83, Iowa 83, Harvard 46, Boise St. 22, Villanova 14, Arizona St. 11, Georgetown 11, UNLV 8, Washington 8, LSU 6, Pittsburgh 6, Stanford 6, Boston College 5, La Salle 4, Missouri 3, Saint Louis 3, St. John’s 3, Cincinnati 1.

My ballot:

  1. Louisville
  2. Michigan State
  3. Duke
  4. Arizona
  5. Syracuse
  6. Kentucky
  7. North Carolina
  8. Michigan
  9. Kansas
  10. Oklahoma State
  11. Ohio State
  12. Florida
  13. Memphis
  14. Oregon
  15. VCU
  16. Notre Dame
  17. Tennessee
  18. Marquette
  19. Wichita State
  20. Gonzaga
  21. Wisconsin
  22. Georgetown
  23. UCLA
  24. Creighton
  25. St. John’s

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