Bucknell makes coaches' poll debut; UConn No. 1
Bucknell is a ranked team for the first time in school history.
Winners of 11 straight, the Bison (20-3) joined the rankings for the first time ever, debuting in the ESPN/USA Today coaches' poll at No. 24 on Monday. Bucknell has been building toward this moment since last season, when it beat Pittsburgh and Saint Joseph's before upsetting Kansas in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Bucknell won at Syracuse earlier this season and has only lost to Duke, Villanova and Santa Clara. The Bison last lost on Jan. 2 at Duke, 84-50, and are 11-0 and atop the Patriot League standings.
The top five was unchanged from last week, with Connecticut (22-1) retaining the top spot for the fourth consecutive week. The Huskies received 22 first-place votes for 759 total points, while No. 2 Duke (23-1) received eight votes for 749 points. Third-ranked Memphis (22-2) received the final vote for eight points.
Villanova (19-2) and Gonzaga (20-3) rounded out the top five.
Texas and Florida switched positions from last week, with the Longhorns (21-2) rising one spot to No. 6 and the Gators (21-3) falling one spot to seventh. George Washington (20-1) stayed at No. 8 for the second straight week, while Pitt (19-3), which beat both then-No. 10 West Virginia and Cincinnati, jumped four spots to No. 9.
Just four weeks after reappearing in the coaches' poll, Tennessee (18-3) made its Top 10 debut. Currently riding a seven-game winning streak, the Vols got wins at both Kentucky and Georgia last week to jump four spots to No. 10.
After one week in the Top 10, West Virginia (18-5) fell one spot to 11th. Ohio State (18-3) made the week's biggest jump, moving up five spots to No. 12. Illinois, which lost two straight, fell four spots to No. 13, followed by UCLA (20-5) and Boston College (19-5).
Falling five spots to No. 16, Michigan State (18-6) was the week's biggest loser, followed by Georgetown (17-5), North Carolina State (19-5), Oklahoma (16-5) and Iowa (19-6).
After wins over USC and then-No. 12 UCLA, Washington (18-5) rose two spots to No. 21. North Carolina, which lost to Duke but won at Miami, jumped one spot to No. 23.
Besides Bucknell, two others teams that were unranked last week squeaked into the Top 25: No. 22 Kansas (17-6) and No. 25 LSU (16-7). The Jayhawks have won seven straight and the Tigers join the poll for the second time this season.
Indiana (19-6), Michigan (16-6) and Colorado (16-5) dropped out of the Top 25.
Information from SportsTicker was used in this report.
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