Cincy Stays Atop AP Poll

Cincinnati won its season opener and remained No. 1 in the AP college basketball poll Monday. Maryland, which spent all last season ranked seventh or higher, moved into the Top 25.

The Bearcats, who beat Youngstown State 94-67 Saturday, received 31 first-place votes and 1,604 points from the national media panel to hold the No. 1 spot for the second straight week.

Auburn, which opened the season last week with wins over UAB and Arkansas-Pine Bluff, and Michigan State, which opens the season Monday night against Toledo, switched places from last week. Second-ranked Auburn had 10 first-place votes and 1,552 points, two more than the Spartans, who were No. 1 on 21 ballots.

North Carolina, Temple, Florida and Connecticut each moved up one spot in the rankings. Arizona, which moved up two spots, Stanford, which stayed at No. 9, and Kansas, which advanced two spots, rounded out the Top Ten.

  • Cincinnati remains No. 1 in the AP's Top 25.(AP)
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  • AP's Marv Schneider
  • Temple and Stanford each had two No. 1 votes, while North Carolina and Florida received one each.

    Kentucky, which advanced to Wednesday's Preseason NIT semifinals along with Arizona, Maryland and Notre Dame, moved from 14th to No. 11 and was followed by Ohio State, UCLA, Syracuse, Illinois, Duke, Tennessee, DePaul, Utah and Texas.

    The last five teams in the rankings were Oklahoma State, Purdue, Iowa, Maryland and Gonzaga.

    Maryland, which beat San Francisco and Tulane in the Preaseason NIT, was ranked No. 2 for two weeks last season but lost three starters and wasn't ranked in the preseason poll.

    The Terrapins moved in at No. 24 and replace St. John's, which fell from 15th after finishing third in the COSIDA Classic, losing to Samford and beating New Mexico.

    The week's biggest drop in the rankings was Ohio State's fall from No. 4 to 12th following the season-opening home loss to Notre Dame on a buzzer-beater by David Graves.

    Two of this week's tournaments have three ranked teams playing in them so there should be shuffling in the poll next week.

    No. 4 North Carolina, No. 6 Florida and No. 22 Purdue are all in the Maui Invitational, while No. 8 Arizona, No. 11 Kentucky and No. 24 Maryland make up three-quarters of the Preseason NIT semifinals.

    In addition to Michigan State, four other ranked teams open their seasons this week. North Carolina plays Southern California and Purdue beat Chaminade in the opening round at Maui and Tennessee plays host to Elon on Monday. UCLA will be the final ranked team to get going, playing Fairfield at home on Tuesday.

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