Duke reclaims coaches' poll top spot; UConn No. 4

Updated: February 20, 2006, 2:10 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

After four weeks at No. 2, Duke has reclaimed the top spot.

The Blue Devils, tops in the ESPN/USA Today coaches' poll all season until January, became No. 1 again Monday after victories over Wake Forest and Miami, part of an overall eight-game winning streak. Duke (25-1) earned 26 first-place votes for 770 points. The Blue Devils have averaged 93 points in their last five games and scored no less than 87 during that span.

Villanova, which had spent three weeks at No. 4, jumped two spots to No. 2 after wins at then-No. 1 Connecticut and then-No. 17 Georgetown. Memphis, which earned three first-place votes for 706 points, remained at No. 3 for the fifth straight week.

UConn's four-week reign atop the poll ended. The Huskies, who lost at Villanova but won at West Virginia, fell three spots to No. 4. UConn (23-2) earned the final two first-place votes for 700 points.

Gonzaga (22-3) remained at No. 5 for the fourth consecutive week.

George Washington continued its season-long ascent in the rankings, jumping another two spots to sixth. The Colonials (22-1) were No. 24 in the preseason poll and have won an NCAA-best 14 straight games.

Texas (22-4) dropped a spot to seventh after a win against Baylor and a 21-point loss at Oklahoma State.

Illinois moved back into the Top 10 after a week out, jumping five spots from 13th to eighth after wins against Northwestern and Indiana. Florida (22-4) and Pittsburgh (20-4) rounded out the Top 10.

Tennessee (19-4) fell out of the Top 10, tumbling one spot to 11th. Ohio State (19-4) remained at No. 12, while Boston College (21-5) moved up two places to 13th.

North Carolina State, which beat Florida State and Virginia Tech, rose four spots to No. 14, followed by West Virginia, which fell four spots to 15th after losses at Seton Hall and against UConn.

Michigan State (19-7) remained at No. 16, followed by UCLA, which fell three spots to 17th, and Kansas, which jumped four spots to No. 18 following blowout wins at Oklahoma State and against Missouri.

Washington (20-5) rose two places to No. 19, and Oklahoma (17-6) fell one spot to 20th after a loss at Colorado and a one-point victory against Iowa State.

Defending national champion North Carolina (17-6) rose a spot to No. 21, followed by Iowa (20-7), which fell one place to 22nd. Rounding out the Top 25 are Georgetown, which took the week's biggest tumble, falling six places to No. 23; LSU, which rose a spot to No. 24; and George Mason, which was unranked last week. The Patriots (21-5) have won eight straight, including a key 70-67 victory at Wichita State on Saturday.

A week after joining the poll for the first time in school history, Bucknell (21-4) dropped from the rankings after a 65-61 double-overtime loss at Northern Iowa on Saturday. It was the Bisons' first loss since Jan. 2 at Duke.

Information from SportsTicker was used in this report.

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