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Sports >  Gonzaga basketball

Gonzaga climbs to No. 12 in the AP rankings

Gonzaga head coach Mark Few chats with senior forward Johnathan Williams during the Incarnate Word game on Nov. 29. (YOUNG KWAK / AP)
Gonzaga head coach Mark Few chats with senior forward Johnathan Williams during the Incarnate Word game on Nov. 29. (YOUNG KWAK / AP)

Gonzaga keeps moving up in the AP college basketball poll and the Zags have an opportunity to make a big jump ths week.

The Zags (7-1) climbed three spots to No. 12 in the Week 5 poll after wins over Incarnate Word and former No. 25 Creighton, which dropped from the rankings after falling 91-74 Friday at the McCarthey Athletic Center.

The Zags moved up one position in the USA rankings to No. 13.

Gonzaga faces its third ranked opponent of the season when it lines up against Villanova (8-0) in the Jimmy V Classic on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden. A victory would almost certainly push the Zags, ranked No. 18 in the preseason poll, into the top 10.

Nothing changed at the top of the AP poll. No. 1 Duke received all 65 first-place votes for the second consecutive week. The Blue Devils are followed by Kansas, Michigan State and Villanova.

Florida, which edged Gonzaga in double-overtime at the PK80 in Portland, moved up one spot to No. 5.

Wichita State, which defeated former No. 16 Baylor, climbed two spots to No. 6, followed by Texas A&M, Kentucky, Notre Dame and Miami.

The Zags sit between No. 11 North Carolina and No. 13 Xavier. Gonzaga picked up 856 points, 143 behind North Carolina and 88 in front of Xavier. The Musketeers moved up eight spots following wins over Baylor and Cincinnati.

No. 16 Arizona State (7-0) is the highest ranked Pac-12 team. USC (4-2) slipped 11 spots to No. 25.

Four teams made top 25 debuts or returned to the rankings after falling out. Seton Hall moved in at No. 19, Purdue is No. 21, Nevada is No. 22 and Tennessee is No. 24. Villanova defeated Tennessee 85-76 in the Battle 4 Atlantis semifinals.

Nevada is back in the poll for the first time since 2006-07.

Creighton received 53 votes, fourth most among teams in the receiving votes category. Saint Mary’s, which dropped out of the rankings last week, didn’t receive a vote. The Gaels had five votes in the Week 4 poll.

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