Bulldogs 9th In AP Top 25

Feb 4, 2002

AP Basketball Writer

Duke is No. 2 at being No. 1.

The Blue Devils were the top-ranked team in The AP college basketball poll Monday, their 12th week this season leading the Top 25 and the 88th time in school history they have been No. 1.

Only UCLA, with 128 weeks, has spent more time on top of the rankings, which began in January 1949.

Duke (20-1), which beat rival North Carolina and Clemson last week, received all 71 first-place votes from the national media panel - its third straight week and eighth overall this season as a unanimous pick - to break a tie with Kentucky for the second-most weeks at No. 1.

Gonzaga made its first appearance in the Top 10, checking in at No. 9. The Bulldogs (20-3) were ranked 11th last week.

"This is great for the program," third-year head coach Mark Few said. "As I've said before, I think this program is to the point where it deserves the respect it is now getting. We've lost the Cinderalla tag, and have demonstrated the past three years have not been a flash in the pan thing. I'm happy for our players because they have worked hard to reach this level."

But Few knows there are still plenty of tough games left.

"We just have a bigger target painted on us," Few said. "Plus, we go to two of the toughest gyms in our league this week. They'll be ready and waiting for us."

The Bulldogs visit Santa Clara on Thursday and San Diego on Saturday in a pair of West Coastr Conference games.

The Blue Devils started the season fourth on the list with 76 weeks on top. In December, they passed North Carolina, which has 81.

Kansas (19-2), which beat Missouri and Colorado last week, and Maryland (18-3), which defeated Virginia and North Carolina State, were second and third for the third straight week.

Otherwise, there was quite a shake-up in the Top 25 - 21 teams shifted places after 15 ranked teams lost a total of 20 games during the past week. It was the fifth straight week at least 14 ranked teams lost.

New No. 4 Oklahoma and No. 5 Alabama each moved up two spots, while Cincinnati, which had its 20-game winning streak snapped Saturday by Marquette, dropped from fourth to No. 6.

Kentucky, Florida, Gonzaga and Virginia rounded out the Top Ten.

It's the first Top Ten appearance in school history for Gonzaga (20-3), while Virginia (14-5) only fell two places despite losing to Maryland and Missouri.

Arizona beat California and Stanford to jump from 19th to 11th, and was followed by Miami, Oregon, Oklahoma State, UCLA, Ohio State, Georgia, Marquette, Wake Forest and Stanford.

The last five ranked teams were Illinois, Missouri, Syracuse, Texas Tech and Southern California.

Oregon and Marquette both returned to the rankings.

The Ducks (17-5), who beat UCLA and Southern California, moved in at No. 13 after being out for one week. Oregon had been ranked for two weeks before losing to Washington and falling out.

Marquette (19-3) had been ranked for six weeks, reaching as high as No. 14, before falling out when it lost three of four games. But the victory over Cincinnati moved the Golden Eagles in at No. 18 after not being ranked for four weeks.

Two Big East teams - Connecticut and Pittsburgh - fell out of the Top 25.

The Huskies (14-5) lost to Rutgers and Miami, dropping out from No. 17 after two weeks in the rankings.

Pittsburgh (19-4) lost to Notre Dame and beat Villanova, but the Panthers dropped out from 21st just one week after returning to the poll.

Oklahoma State, Illinois and Syracuse joined Virginia and Connecticut as ranked teams losing two games last week.

Illinois, which fell to Ohio State and Michigan State, and Syracuse, which lost to Georgetown and Rutgers, both had the week's biggest drops, falling nine spots to 21st and 23rd, respectively.

The week's biggest climb was Ohio State's move from No. 25 to 16th after beating Illinois and Northwestern.

By The Associated Press

The top 25 teams in The Associated Press' men's college basketball poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, records through Feb. 3, total points based on 25 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 25th-place vote and previous ranking:

                        Record  Pts  Pv 
 1. Duke (71)             20-1  1,775  1
 2. Kansas                19-2  1,702  2
 3. Maryland              18-3  1,632  3
 4. Oklahoma              17-3  1,513  6
 5. Alabama               19-3  1,449  7
 6. Cincinnati            20-2  1,407  4
 7. Kentucky              15-5  1,331 10
 8. Florida               16-4  1,297  5
 9. Gonzaga               20-3  1,136 11 
10. Virginia              14-5    917  8
11. Arizona               15-6    875 19
12. Miami                 19-3    736 15
13. Oregon                17-5    728  -
14. Oklahoma St.          17-5    709  9
15. UCLA                  15-6    635 13
16. Ohio St.              17-3    564 25
17. Georgia               17-5    557 16
18. Marquette             19-3    490  -
19. Wake Forest           16-6    474 24
20. Stanford              13-6    436 18
21. Illinois              15-7    416 12
22. Missouri              16-6    364 22
23. Syracuse              17-6    305 14
24. Texas Tech            16-4    281 20
25. Southern Cal          16-5    272 23
Others receiving votes: Pittsburgh 264, Memphis 188, Connecticut 185, Indiana 125, Utah 102, Xavier 75, Hawaii 38, W. Kentucky 31, Mississippi 16, Butler 14, Pepperdine 13, N.C. State 8, California 4, Minnesota 4, Notre Dame 3, S. Illinois 2, Kent St. 1, Tulsa 1.


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