NCAA Basketball Top 25 Straw Poll: Week 12
There were a number of intra-Top-25 matchups in Week 11 of the college basketball season, and almost none of them disappointed.
Aside from Florida's blowout win over Missouri, the other four games between Top 25 teams on Saturday were decided by an average of 3.8 points. Plus, Wichita State defeated Creighton by three points in a thriller, vaulting the Shockers into the Top 25, Cincinnati outlasted Marquette in overtime, and Kansas erased a double-digit deficit against Texas to avoid an upset.
Meanwhile, with losses by No. 1 Louisville and No. 2 Indiana, Duke jumped back up to the No. 1 rank.
Read on to see the complete Top 25.
Others Receiving Votes
Mississippi, 19 points
UCLA, 17 points
Kentucky, 16 points
Memphis, 13 points
North Carolina, 12 points
Wisconsin, 8 points
Baylor, 8 points
Marquette, 6 points
Oklahoma State, 6 points
UNLV, 4 points
Colorado State, 1 point
25. San Diego State Aztecs
Record: 14-4, 2-2 MWC
Last Week's Rank: 15
Notable Wins: UCLA (Neutral), Colorado State (Home)
San Diego State played a pair of close games in its first two Mountain West games, but the Aztecs were able to pull out a pair of victories. Last week, they were not as fortunate, as they lost a close game to UNLV and then struggled in a 58-45 loss to Wyoming.
To stay in next week's rankings, San Diego State will likely have to beat Nevada, which is coming off its first Mountain West win, on Wednesday.
24. Miami (FL) Hurricanes
Record: 13-3, 4-0 ACC
Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked
Notable Wins: Michigan State (Home), UNC (Road), Maryland (Home)
Miami (FL) is the only unbeaten team in the ACC, but the Hurricanes are yet to play either Duke or North Carolina State, the two big favorites in the conference.
Still, the Hurricanes have won their first four games despite forward Reggie Johnson missing them with an injury.
23. Missouri Tigers
Record: 13-4, 2-2 SEC
Last Week's Rank: 16
Notable Wins: VCU (Neutral), Illinois (Neutral), Bucknell (Home)
Missouri has struggled without Laurence Bowers, going 1-2 in its last three games. On Saturday, the Tigers were embarrassed by Florida, 83-52, as they shot 32.7 percent from the field and turned the ball over 21 times.
Mizzou will have a good chance at two wins this week with games against South Carolina and Vanderbilt, which are each 1-3 in the SEC.
22. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Record: 15-3, 3-2 Big East
Last Week's Rank: 18
Notable Wins: Kentucky (Home), Cincinnati (Road)
Notre Dame pulled back above .500 in the Big East with a win over Rutgers on Saturday night. Jack Cooley had 19 points and 10 rebounds in addition to making a defensive stand in the final minute.
This week, the Fighting Irish will host Georgetown, which is coming off a loss at South Florida.
21. Wichita State Shockers
Record: 17-2, 6-1 MVC
Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked
Notable Wins: VCU (Road), Iowa (Neutral), Creighton (Home)
Wichita State returns to the Top 25 this week following a 67-64 win over nationally-ranked Creighton. The Shockers are now tied for first place in the Missouri Valley, and they hold the tiebreaker with the win over the Bluejays.
Next up for the Shockers is a game at Missouri State on Wednesday.
20. Cincinnati Bearcats
Record: 16-3, 4-2 Big East
Last Week's Rank: 24
Notable Wins: Iowa State (Neutral), Oregon (Neutral), Pitt (Road), Marquette (Home)
Cincinnati remained in the Top 25 by outlasting Marquette in overtime on Saturday night, 71-69. In the win, Sean Kilpatrick set a career high with 36 points.
The Bearcats have now won three straight games entering a match against first-place Syracuse.
19. Oregon Ducks
Record: 16-2, 5-0 Pac-12
Last Week's Rank: Not Ranked
Notable Wins: UNLV (Road), Arizona (Home), UCLA (Road)
Oregon cracked the Top 25 for the first time this season after sweeping its Southern California road trip, defeating USC and nationally-ranked UCLA. The Ducks now have three Top 25 wins and are the only unbeaten team in the Pac-12.
Oregon returns home this week to face Washington State and Washington.
18. New Mexico Lobos
Record: 16-2, 3-0 MWC
Last Week's Rank: 21
Notable Wins: UConn (Neutral), Cincinnati (Road), UNLV (Home)
New Mexico survived in overtime at Boise State on Wednesday to remain the only undefeated team in Mountain West play. Hugh Greenwood provided some late-game heroics, making a game-tying layup in the final of minute of regulation and then scoring five points in the extra period.
The Lobos have another tough week coming up with Colorado State on Wednesday and San Diego State on Saturday.
17. Ohio State Buckeyes
Record: 13-4, 3-2 Big Ten
Last Week's Rank: 13
Notable Wins: Washington (Neutral), Michigan (Home)
Following its impressive win over No. 2 Michigan, Ohio State fell at Michigan State over the weekend, 59-56. Although the outcome was disappointing, Deshaun Thomas continued to emerge as a star with 28 points and seven rebounds.
Next up for the Buckeyes is Iowa at home on Tuesday.
16. Kansas State Wildcats
Record: 15-2, 4-0 Big 12
Last Week's Rank: 19
Notable Wins: Florida (Neutral), Oklahoma State (Home), Oklahoma (Home)
Kansas State knocked off Texas Christian and Oklahoma last week to stay undefeated in Big 12 play. In two games, Rodney McGruder averaged 20.5 points and three assists.
The Wildcats' next game will be on Tuesday when they host Kansas, which is also unbeaten in conference play.
15. Creighton Bluejays
Record: 17-2, 6-1 MVC
Last Week's Rank: 12
Notable Wins: Wisconsin (Neutral), Arizona State (Neutral)
Creighton's undefeated MVC season and 11-game winning streak ended with the loss at Wichita State on Saturday afternoon. The Bluejays had two good looks at a game-tying three-pointer in the final seconds but could not capitalize.
This week, they will continue their road trip with games at Drake, which they beat by 30 at home, and Southern Illinois.
T-13. Minnesota Golden Gophers
Record: 15-3, 3-2 Big Ten
Last Week's Rank: 11
Notable Wins: Memphis (Neutral), Michigan State (Home), Illinois (Road)
After a hot, 3-0 start in the Big Ten, Minnesota lost to Indiana and Michigan in its last two games. The Golden Gophers had not allowed an opponent to score 70 points or more since November 23, but the Hoosiers and Wolverines posted 88 and 83, respectively.
This week, they will try to end the two-game slide on the road against Northwestern and Wisconsin.
T-13. North Carolina State Wolfpack
Record: 15-3, 4-1 ACC
Last Week's Rank: 10
Notable Wins: UConn (Neutral), Duke (Home)
North Carolina State had a letdown loss at Maryland early in the week, but the Wolfpack responded with a 66-62 win over the Clemson Tigers on Sunday night.
T.J. Warren came off the bench to score 21 points, and Richard Howell posted his 10th double-double of the season.
12. Virginia Commonwealth Rams
Record: 16-3, 4-0 A-10
Last Week's Rank: 22
Notable Wins: Memphis (Neutral)
Virginia Commonwealth defeated St. Joseph's and Duquesne last week to remain one of three undefeated teams in the Atlantic 10. Darius Theus had a huge game against the Hawks with 22 points, 10 rebounds and four assists.
On Thursday, the Rams will play at Richmond, which is located only about six miles away from VCU.
11. Michigan State Spartans
Record: 16-3, 5-1 Big Ten
Last Week's Rank: 17
Notable Wins: Kansas (Neutral), Ohio State (Home)
Michigan State defeated Ohio State on Saturday for its second Top 15 win of the season.
The Spartans are now tied for first place in the Big Ten heading into a road trip with games against Wisconsin and Indiana.
10. Gonzaga Bulldogs
Record: 17-2, 4-0 WCC
Last Week's Rank: 8
Notable Wins: Oklahoma (Neutral), Kansas State (Neutral), Baylor (Home), Oklahoma State (Road)
Gonzaga's eight-game winning streak ended on Saturday with a 64-63 loss at Butler. The Zags took a 63-62 lead in the final seconds, but a David Stockton turnover resulted in a buzzer-beater by Roosevelt Jones.
Gonzaga will return to WCC action against Brigham Young on Thursday night.
9. Butler Bulldogs
Record: 16-2, 3-0 A-10
Last Week's Rank: 14
Notable Wins: Marquette (Neutral), UNC (Neutral), Indiana (Neutral), Gonzaga (Home)
Butler received some more Butler magic over the weekend, defeating Gonzaga on a buzzer-beater by Roosevelt Jones. The game appeared to be in the books after Alex Barlow traveled with 3.5 seconds remaining, but Jones stole the ensuing inbounds pass, after getting away with a push-off, and went the length of the floor.
The Bulldogs will return to Atlantic 10 action against La Salle on Wednesday.
8. Indiana Hoosiers
Record: 16-2, 4-1 Big Ten
Last Week's Rank: 2
Notable Wins: Georgetown (Neutral), UNC (Home), Minnesota (Home)
Following a home loss to Wisconsin, Indiana went on the road to beat Northwestern on Sunday. The Hoosiers' 17-point lead was cut to as few as five points, but they shot 7-of-8 from the foul line in the final minute to secure the win.
This week, the Hoosiers will play home games against Penn State and Michigan State.
7. Florida Gators
Record: 14-2, 4-0 SEC
Last Week's Rank: 9
Notable Wins: Wisconsin (Home), Marquette (Home), Missouri (Home)
Florida cemented itself as the SEC favorite last week by blowing out Texas A&M and Missouri. Against the Tigers, Scottie Wilbekin had the best game of his young career with 13 points, 10 assists and three steals.
The Gators' next three games are against Georgia, Mississippi State and South Carolina, all of which are among the worst teams in the conference, but they lead into a huge game against Ole Miss, which is also 4-0 in the SEC, on February 2.
6. Arizona Wildcats
Record: 16-1, 4-1 Pac-12
Last Week's Rank: 7
Notable Wins: Florida (Home), San Diego State (Neutral), Arizona State (Road)
Arizona defeated in-state rival Arizona State on Saturday afternoon to finish 2-1 during its road trip. Mark Lyons, despite spending much of the first half in foul trouble, scored 24 points and had three steals against the Sun Devils.
On Thursday, the Wildcats play UCLA, which is coming off a loss to Oregon, its first in Pac-12 play.
5. Louisville Cardinals
Record: 16-2, 4-1 Big East
Last Week's Rank: 1
Notable Wins: Missouri (Neutral), Memphis (Road), UConn (Road)
Louisville's 11-game winning streak and reign as the No. 1 team both came to an end with the Cardinals' 70-68 loss to Syracuse. The Cardinals failed to execute down the stretch with turnovers on two of their final three possessions.
Louisville will look to rebound at Villanova on Tuesday night.
4. Syracuse Orange
Record: 17-1, 5-0 Big East
Last Week's Rank: 6
Notable Wins: San Diego State (Neutral), Louisville (Road)
Syracuse defeated No. 1 Louisville on the road for what is easily the Orange's best win of the 2012-13 season. The Orange erased a nine-point first-half deficit and took the lead for good on a Michael Carter-Williams breakaway dunk in the final minute.
The Orange will continue their quest towards a perfect season in the Big East with games against Cincinnati and Villanova this week.
3. Kansas Jayhawks
Record: 16-1, 4-0 Big 12
Last Week's Rank: 4
Notable Wins: Colorado (Home), Belmont (Home), Ohio State (Road)
Kansas had another close call on Saturday, the third time in five games where that has happened. The Jayhawks trailed for nearly the entire game but finished the game on an 8-2 run to win, 64-59.
On Tuesday, the Jayhawks will play their rival, Kansas State.
2. Michigan Wolverines
Record: 17-1, 4-1 Big Ten
Last Week's Rank: 5
Notable Wins: Pitt (Neutral), Kansas State (Neutral), NC State (Home), Minnesota (Road)
After a heartbreaking loss to Ohio State last Sunday, Michigan finished strong on its road trip with an 83-75 win at Minnesota. Trey Burke had 18 points and nine assists while Tim Hardaway Jr. recorded 21 points.
On Thursday, the Wolverines will host Purdue, which is coming off three consecutive wins.
1. Duke Blue Devils
Record: 16-1, 3-1 ACC
Last Week's Rank: 3
Notable Wins: Kentucky (Neutral), Minnesota (Neutral), VCU (Neutral), Louisville (Neutral), Ohio State (Home)
Duke got back on its feet after a loss to North Carolina State by defeating Georgia Tech, 73-57, on Thursday without forward Ryan Kelly. Mason Plumlee had a double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds, and Seth Curry posted 24 points and made six three-pointers.
On Wednesday, the Blue Devils will travel to play Miami (FL), which is the only undefeated team remaining in the ACC.