Hoops: Texas Takes A Dip In Polls Before Big Win

The Texas men’s basketball team slipped to No. 11 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll and to No. 15 in the Associated Press poll released on Monday just hours before the Horns earned a 75-61 win over No. 5 Oklahoma State.

The drop in rank resulted from a week that saw the Longhorns go 1-1, with a 74-63 road loss to Texas A&M and a 63-53 win over Nebraska.

The two polls show identical top 10 rankings, with Illinois (18-0) owning the top spot after beating Penn State and Northwestern. Kansas (13-0) stayed at No. 2 with wins over Iowa State and Colorado. Wake Forest (15-1) trails the Jayhawks at No. 3 after impressive victories over Maryland and North Carolina. Duke (13-0) rose a spot to the No. 4 position in both polls, followed by a No. 5 Oklahoma State team that defeated Missouri and Iowa State last week before losing just its second game of the season (vs. 13 wins) Monday night to now 14-3 Texas.

After crushing Georgia Tech but losing to Wake Forest, North Carolina (14-2) dropped a few spots to No. 6. Syracuse (17-1) remains at No. 7, one spot ahead of eighth-ranked Kentucky (12-2). Undefeated Boston College (14-0) jumped up to No. 9 in the polls with a win over West Virginia. At No. 10, Washington (15-2) rounds out the top tier.

Other than Kansas, Oklahoma State and Texas, Oklahoma (13-2) is the only other Big 12 team to crack the rankings. With wins last week over Connecticut and Baylor, the Sooners rose to No. 18 in the AP poll and No. 21 in the Coaches poll.

Meanwhile, the top four Big 12 teams check in at CollegeRPI.com (which simulates the NCAA's Ratings Percentage Index rankings) in the same order as in the polls, with Kansas (No. 1) followed by Oklahoma State (No. 3), Texas (No. 25) and Oklahoma (No. 26). Texas Tech (10-4) is the next highest-rated league team at No. 39, with Colorado (8-6) at No. 53 and A&M (12-2) at No. 70.

ESPN.com's weekly Bracketology feature pegs the Horns' as a fifth seed if the NCAA Tourney were to start today, with Big 12-mate KU slated for the top overall seed in the Field of 64. Before the loss to Texas, the Cowboys of Oklahoma State projected as a two. UT's Saturday opponent (2:45 tip in Norman on CBS) Oklahoma is picked as a fourth seed while Tech and A&M both come in as a 10.

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