The Gonzaga women’s basketball team earned two big wins in Northern California last week – big but not convincing, at least as far as Associated Press voters were concerned.
The drop coincides with a growing dominance of teams from Power-5 conferences. Sixteen of the top 25 teams in this week’s poll are from the Southeastern, Pac-12 and Big Ten.
However, Gonzaga held steady at 17th in the NCAA’s NET rankings, the primary metric for determining selections and seeding for the NCAA Tournament.
Gonzaga is 15-2 overall and 10-0 in the West Coast Conference going into a home game Tuesday night against BYU.
The shift in poll wasn’t entirely unexpected. Arkansas, previously ranked 19th and one spot behind GU, reaped the benefit of an upset win over third-ranked Connecticut and moved up to 16th.
Arkansas is 13-6 overall but only 3-5 in the rugged Southeastern Conference, which has seven teams in this week’s poll.
Also moving up was traditional SEC power Tennessee. The Volunteers also passed the Zags, moving up from 20th after beating unranked teams Ole Miss and Florida.
Tennessee is 12-3 overall and 6-1 in the SEC, which is currently the top-ranked conference in the Rating Percentage Index.
The WCC moved up two spots, to eighth, with GU leading the way at 20th, followed by BYU (45th) and Portland (92nd).
Gonzaga is currently pegged as a 5 seed by two prominent bracketologists, Charlie Crème of ESPN and NBA 2K League reporter Autumn Johnson.
Louisville stayed atop the poll, followed by South Carolina, UConn, North Carolina State and UCLA.
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