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Sports >  Gonzaga basketball

Gonzaga retains No. 2 spot, fourth straight season with top-10 ranking in final AP poll

UPDATED: Wed., March 18, 2020

Gonzaga closed the season at No. 2 in the final AP college basketball poll, adding to another streak in its burgeoning collection.

It’s the fourth consecutive season the Bulldogs have finished in the AP top 10. It should be noted that the final AP poll typically is released following the conference tournaments and prior to the start of the NCAA Tournament.

The NCAA last week canceled March Madness due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Gonzaga was No. 1 in the final AP rankings in 2013. The Zags were fourth in 2019, eighth in 2018 and second in 2017. The 2016 Zags received votes but didn’t crack the final Top 25. Gonzaga also finished seventh in 2015.

Gonzaga (31-2) was one of the few teams to complete its conference tournament. The Zags got a small bump in the media panel’s voting after defeating San Francisco and Saint Mary’s to win the West Coast Conference Tournament in Las Vegas.

The Zags picked up one first-place vote and totaled 1,547 points. No. 3 Dayton also snagged a first-place vote. No. 1 Kansas, which collected every first-place vote the previous two weeks, had 63 of 65 possible first-place votes and 1,623 points.

Gonzaga was ranked No. 2 in nine polls throughout the season, the first time in mid-December. The Zags spent four weeks at No. 1, falling to No. 2 despite a 2-0 week that included a 23-point win over BYU, which was No. 33 in the NET (NCAA Evaluation Tool) rankings at the time.

Baylor took over the top spot and stayed for five weeks before a home loss to Kansas, hours before the Zags lost to BYU in Provo, Utah. The Jayhawks vaulted from third to first and kept their hold on No. 1 in the final four polls. Florida State, Baylor, San Diego State, Creighton, Kentucky, Michigan State and Villanova round out the top 10.

BYU (24-8) slipped four spots to No. 18 after falling to Saint Mary’s in the WCC Tournament semifinals. The Gaels received 33 points, sixth among teams receiving votes.

Gonzaga went 2-1 against teams in the final Top 25, splitting regular-season matchups against BYU and edging No. 13 Oregon in the Bahamas. The Zags were 4-1 vs. teams receiving votes (3-0 vs. Saint Mary’s, 0-1 vs. Michigan, 1-0 vs. Arizona).

Gonzaga was No. 8 in the preseason poll, matching 2016 for its second-highest preseason rating. The Zags opened 2019 at No. 3.

Gonzaga was No. 2 in the final USA Today poll released Monday. The Zags were No. 1 in the final NET rankings, followed by Kansas, Dayton, San Diego State and Baylor.

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