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Kansas ranked No. 8 in Associated Press college basketball poll
Parity was the big winner in college basketball last week, when 15 of the 25 teams ranked in the Associated Press college basketball poll lost at least once. Top 25 teams combined for a 27-20 record.
Voters didn't punish Kansas too badly for its first Big 12 loss, 81-69, at Texas. The Jayhawks moved down two spots, to eighth.
Teams that defeat Kansas usually take a big leap in the poll and the Longhorns were no exception. They moved from 25th to 15th after the KU victory, the fourth in a row against a ranked opponent.
The top 25 teams in the AP poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, records through Feb. 2 and total points, based on 25 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 25th-place vote and last week's ranking:
Record Pts Prv
- Syracuse (65) 21-0 1,625 2
- Arizona 21-1 1,517 1
- Florida 19-2 1,482 3
- Wichita St. 23-0 1,447 4
- San Diego St. 19-1 1,370 5
- Villanova 19-2 1,252 9
- Cincinnati 21-2 1,182 13
- Kansas 16-5 1,141 6
- Michigan St. 19-3 1,136 7
- Michigan 16-5 949 10
- Duke 17-5 940 17
- Creighton 18-3 790 20
- Saint Louis 20-2 728 19
- Louisville 18-4 723 12
- Texas 17-4 719 25
- Iowa St. 16-4 717 16
- Iowa 17-5 669 15
- Kentucky 16-5 653 11
- Oklahoma St. 16-5 420 8
- Virginia 17-5 364 NR
- Oklahoma 17-5 361 23
- UConn 17-4 252 NR
- Gonzaga 20-3 237 NR
- Memphis 16-5 114 22
- Pittsburgh 18-4 110 18
Others receiving votes: Wisconsin 79, Ohio St. 45, VCU 44, SMU 15, New Mexico 12, California 9, UCLA 9, Harvard 4, George Washington 3, LSU 3, Tennessee 2, American U. 1, Southern Miss. 1.
My top 25 AP ballot:
1 - Syracuse: Orange senior C.J. Fair (28 points) was a lot better than Duke freshman Jabari Parker (15 points), but in the overtime, Syracuse Jerami Grant was the best player on the floor in a classic matchup between the game’s two winningest coaches in Division I history.
2 - Arizona: Superstar guard Nick Johnson (1 for 14, 0 for 5 from three) couldn’t get anything to drop and neither could Aaron Gordon (4 for 14), yet the Wildcats still almost remained undefeated, losing to Cal, 60-58.
3 - Wichita State: If the Shockers can win two tough road games this week, only a big upset could keep them from finishing the regular season undefeated. They play at Indiana State on Wednesday and at Northern Iowa on Saturday.
4 - Florida: Gators have won 27 in a row at home and have the same record (19-2) that they had after 21 games when they won back-to-back national titles last decade.
5 - San Diego State: Think Steve Fisher’s experience might give him an advantage late in games? The Aztecs have won 110 consecutive games when leading with five minutes remaining.
6 - Villanova: Bounced off the deck after blowout loss to Creighton by picking up three consecutive road wins.
7 - Kansas: Quick, feisty Longhorns made Jayhawks look slow by comparison. They’ll make a lot of teams look slow.
8 - Michigan State: Not the same team without injured forwards Adreian Payne and Branden Dawson.
9 - Cincinnati: Sean Kilpatrick moved to third on Bearcats career scoring list, trailing only the great Oscar Robertson and Steve Logan. UConn visits Thursday in what should be an interesting one.Parity was the big winner in college basketball last week, when top 25 teams combined for a 27-20 record. Fifteen of the 25 teams, including Kansas, lost during the week.
10 - Michigan: Nik Stauskus’ three-point shooting in five losses: 6 for 22 (.272); Stauskus’ three-point shooting in 16 victories: 44 for 87 (.506).
11 - Duke: Blue Devils had impressive week on the road, pounding Pittsburgh and then taking Syracuse to overtime in a two-point loss. With more weeks like that out of sophomore center Amile Jefferson (averaged 14 points and 8.5 boards, made 11 of 15 field goals), Duke will continue to climb back up rankings.
12 - Iowa: Eleven players average double-figures minutes in the running, pressing Fran McCaffery system.
13 - Kentucky: Young Wildcats split road games, losing to LSU and defeating Missouri. In the victory at Missouri, freshmen combined for 77 of Kentucky’s 84 points. Mizzou, by the way, started 41-1 at home under Frank Haith, but are 2-2 in the last four.
14 - Louisville: Don’t blame Russ Smith for Cardinals’ inconsistent play. He has scored in double figures every game and in nine American Athletic Conference games is shooting .548 from three.
American who, what, when, where, why?
Who: Cincinnati (10-0), Louisville (7-2), Memphis (6-3) SMU (6-3), Connecticut (5-3), Houston (3-6), South Florida (2-7), Central Florida (1-7) and Temple (1-7) form the first-year conference.
What: A geographic hodgepodge of schools seeking a temporary home. When: Formed in July 1, 2013, although its official roots reach to May 31, 1979, when the Big East was formed.
Where: It’s headquarters are in Providence, R.I., and its members come from eight states, but not Rhode Island. After this school year, Rutgers will depart for the Big Ten, Louisville for the ACC. East Carolina, Tulsa and Tulane will join the conference next year.
Why: Seven catholic universities departed the old Big East to join Butler, Creighton and Xavier to form what is called the Big East.
15 - Texas: Junior Jonathan Holmes coming up huge for Longhorns. He does a little bit of everything. He leads team in scoring (13.4), is second in rebounds (7.3), is third in blocks (1.4), third in field-goal percentage (.517), first in free-throw pct. (.793) and tied for first in three-point pct. (.385). He runs the floor hard and plays unselfishly, so do his teammates.
16 - Creighton: Team’s three top scorers — Doug McDermott (25.0), Ethan Wragge (12.0) and Jahenns Manigat (8.4) — combine for stunning .469 three-point percentage. The three Blue Jays combine to average 17.5 three-point attempts per game. All but six of Wragge’s 163 field-goal attempts have come from beyond the arc.
17 - Iowa State: The loser of tonight’s game in Stillwater falls to seventh place with a losing record midway through the Big 12 season and qualifies as the biggest first-half disappointment and leading contender for most-improved team in the second half of conference play.
18 - Oklahoma: Sooners have five players averaging in double figures and center Ryan Spangler is averaging a double-double (11.1 points, 10.2 rebounds). When I lived in California (1981-89), I averaged roughly a double-double per day, frequenting various In-’N-Out Burger locations.
19 - St. Louis: Almost suffered what would have been one of the biggest upsets of this college basketball season. But the Billikens prevailed in overtime against George Mason, which is seven games behind SLU seven games into the Atlantic 10 season. Now comes the tough stretch of the schedule: At St. Joseph, at Lasalle, at home against second-place VCU.
20 - Virginia: Cavaliers woke up after getting slapped silly at Tennessee, 87-52, in final nonconference game. Only ACC loss was at Duke in a game Virginia led with 20 seconds remaining. Aside from that, Cavs are 4-0 in conference road games with an average margin of victory of 15.3 points.
21 - Oklahoma State: Efforts to trace the origin of Marcus Smart’s family name to shot selection were unsuccessful. In the Cowboys’ past four games, Smart has made 3 of 28 three-pointers. Repeat: 3 of 28 three-pointers. Wow.
22 - UConn: DeAndre Daniels, the 6-foot-9, 195-pound junior who considered Kansas, is averaging 13.4 points and shooting .478 from three.
23 - UCLA: Point forward Kyle Anderson has reached double figures in assists three times. Not many players who have a wingspan of 7-2 can say the same.
24 - New Mexico: Cameron Bairstow, the 6-9, 250-pound forward who dropped 24 points in loss to Kansas, is averaging 20 points and 6.9 rebounds for Lobos, winners of 10 of last 11.
25 - Ohio State: Buckeyes had lost 5 of 6 before winning at Wisconsin, which has lost 5 of 6.