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Thoughts on the AP Poll: Duke remains at No. 2 in latest rankings

The Blue Devils—and the rest of the top seven—didn't move up or down after two Duke games were postponed. Here are our thoughts on the rest of college basketball and how the newest rankings look:

Duke stuck in second spot

There is truly little for Duke to reflect on after sticking at No. 2 for the fourth straight week. The Blue Devils haven’t played since last week’s rankings, with both Wednesday’s game at Clemson and Saturday’s contest at Notre Dame postponed due to COVID-19. Combine that with another mistake-free week for top-ranked Baylor, and head coach Mike Krzyzewski’s squad is stuck behind the Bears yet again.

Baylor fends off Iowa State in battle of undefeated teams

Heading into 2022, there were four undefeated teams left in the country. By the end of No. 1 Baylor and then-No. 8 Iowa State’s battle New Year’s Day, only three remained.

The matchup between the Bears and Cyclones added some much-needed intrigue to an otherwise slow week for college basketball’s best, as no top-10 team lost, excluding Iowa State. The Cyclones, who began the season unranked before racing out to a 12-0 start, never led in the 77-72 loss to the reigning champions, but proved they do belong with college basketball’s best. With looming matchups against No. 25 Texas Tech, No. 6 Kansas and No. 14 Texas, it certainly won’t be the Cyclones' last chance to prove their worth.

Baylor, on the other hand, doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon. The Bears, retooled roster and all, own 13 wins against zero losses and have three against current top-25 teams. They should be the team to beat in the Big 12, even amidst impressive competition.

SEC dominance

This time of year, plenty of people are recognizing the SEC as a college football powerhouse. What they don’t realize, is just how good the conference has been in basketball this season.

The SEC has five top-20 teams with Auburn leading the pack and in the top-ten for the first time this season. This week alone, the Tigers prevailed against then-No. 16 LSU’s own Tigers, 70-55, while then-No. 19 Alabama outlasted then-No. 14 Tennessee, 73-68. Add in No. 17 Kentucky and an often forgotten team like unranked Arkansas, and you might begin to see that things are about to get really interesting in the SEC as conference play heats up in January. The conference currently has seven forecasted teams in ESPN’s Joe Lunardi’s latest Bracketology, second only to the Big Ten.

Complete rankings:

1. Baylor

2. Duke

3. Purdue

4. Gonzaga

5. UCLA

6. Kansas

7. USC

8. Arizona

9. Auburn

10. Michigan State

11. Iowa State

12. Houston

13. Ohio State

14. Texas

15. Alabama

16. Providence

17. Kentucky

18. Tennessee

19. Villanova

20. Colorado State

21. LSU

22. Xavier

23. Wisconsin

24. Seton Hall

25. Texas Tech


Jonathan Levitan

Jonathan Levitan is a Trinity sophomore and an assistant Blue Zone editor of The Chronicle's 117th volume. 

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