CBKB: Richmond in Top 25 for first time in 24 years
By JIM O’CONNELL
AP Basketball Writer
Kansas State hasn’t been ranked this high in almost five decades. Richmond hasn’t been ranked in almost 25 years.
A week that saw 10 ranked teams, including four in the top 10, lose games wound up with Kansas at No. 1 on Monday for a third straight Associated Press college basketball poll — and two schools in unfamiliar territory.
Kansas State (20-4) moved from ninth to No. 7, the Wildcats’ highest ranking since they were sixth in the final poll of the 1961-62 season. Richmond (20-6), the first-place team in the Atlantic 10, moved in at No. 25, the first time the Spiders have been ranked since January 1986.
Kansas (24-1) was again a runaway No. 1, receiving 62 first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel, while Kentucky (24-1), which had the other No. 1 nods, moved up one spot to No. 2.
Villanova moved up one place to No. 3, with Purdue gaining two places to fourth, the sixth week this season the Boilermakers have reached that spot.
Syracuse, which had its 11-game winning streak stopped by Louisville on Sunday, dropped from second to fifth. Duke, which strengthened its lead in the Atlantic Coast Conference with a win over Maryland on Saturday, jumped from eighth to sixth.
West Virginia, which lost to Villanova and Pittsburgh last week, fell from fifth to No. 8, followed by Ohio State and Georgetown, another upset victim, losing to Rutgers on Sunday.
Michigan State, which lost to Purdue, dropped one spot to 11th and was followed by New Mexico, Gonzaga, Wisconsin, Texas, BYU, Vanderbilt, Butler, Pittsburgh and Tennessee, which dropped eight spots after losing to Vanderbilt and Kentucky.
The last five teams were Temple, Baylor and newcomers Wake Forest, Texas A&M and Richmond.
Northern Iowa, Georgia Tech and UNLV dropped out this week.
Wake Forest (18-5), which has won four straight and six of seven including a 75-64 victory over Georgia Tech on Saturday, moved in for the first time this season. The Demon Deacons, who were ranked all last season including one week at No. 1, are in second place in the ACC.
Texas A&M (18-6) was ranked for four weeks earlier this season and the Aggies moved back in having won four straight games and six of seven, moving into a second-place tie with Kansas State in the Big 12 behind Kansas.
Richmond’s run to the top of the Atlantic 10 has come on a six-game winning streak that includes a 71-54 victory over Temple. The Spiders were ranked for three weeks in 1954-55, two weeks in 1957-58 and the one-week stint in January 1986.
Northern Iowa (22-3), which has clinched at least a share of the Missouri Valley Conference title, dropped out from No. 19 following a 68-59 loss at Bradley on Saturday that snapped a six-game winning streak.
Georgia Tech (17-8), which was ranked 22nd in the preseason poll, fell out from 20th after six straight weeks in the rankings. The Yellow Jackets, who lost to Miami and Wake Forest last week, dropped to 1-5 in ACC road games.
UNLV (19-6) returned to the poll last week at No. 23 after being out the previous eight weeks. The Rebels had won seven of eight games before losing to New Mexico and San Diego State.
Ohio State is in two of this week’s six games between ranked teams. The Buckeyes host Purdue on Wednesday and are at Michigan State on Sunday. The other games are: Kansas at Texas A&M on Monday; Syracuse at Georgetown on Thursday; Kentucky at Vanderbilt on Saturday; and Villanova at Pittsburgh on Sunday.