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Sports >  NCAA basketball

Same as it ever was: Gonzaga, Baylor remain 1-2 in Top 25 polls

UPDATED: Mon., Jan. 11, 2021

Gonzaga coach Mark Few talks with players during a timeout in the Zags' win over BYU last Thursday.   (By Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga coach Mark Few talks with players during a timeout in the Zags' win over BYU last Thursday.  (By Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

The more things change below Gonzaga and Baylor, the more they stay the same at the top.

The Bulldogs and Bears remain 1-2 in the AP Top 25 for the eighth straght week, counting preseason rankings. For the second straight week, Gonzaga collected 63 first-place votes, Baylor 1 from the media panel.

It was a similar story in the USA Today poll, with No. 1 Gonzaga receiving 29 of 32 first-place votes and No. 2 Baylor snagging the other three for the third straight week.

Gonzaga and Baylor are 1-2 in the NCAA’s NET rankings, KenPom, CBS Sports Top 25 and 1, Andy Katz’s Power 36 and ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi’s latest NCAA tournament seed list.

The Zags and Bears are among eight unbeaten Division I teams. The Bears (11-0) have a tougher task ahead if they want to stay unbeaten. Their game against West Virginia on Tuesday has been postponed, but the Bears still face AP No. 15 Texas Tech on Saturday and No. 6 Kansas next Monday.

Gonzaga (12-0), which pounded BYU 86-69 and Portland 116-88 last week, entertains Pepperdine on Thursday and visits Saint Mary’s on Saturday. The Gaels were picked third and the Waves fourth in the West Coast Conference preseason poll, but Saint Mary’s dropped its WCC opener to Santa Clara and the Waves (4-5) haven’t played since Dec. 23 due to COVID-19 concerns.

Villanova, Texas, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Creighton, Wisconsin and Tennessee rounded out the AP Top 10.

The Zags have victories over No. 5 Iowa, No. 6 Kansas, No. 13 West Virginia and No. 18 Virginia. Gonzaga’s closest game was a five-point victory over the Mountaineers.

Baylor’s closest contest was a 76-65 victory over Iowa State. The Bears’ best win to date was against current No. 14 Illinois (82-69).

No. 22 Oregon dropped five spots but remains the lone Pac-12 team in the AP poll. BYU didn’t receive a vote after picking up 18 points in last week’s poll.

Gonzaga, Baylor, Tennessee, Michigan and Iowa are the top 5 in the NET rankings. BYU, which was No. 52 in the initial NET rankings last Monday, is up to No. 41 despite a lopsided loss to Gonzaga in its only game.

The rest of the WCC’s NET rankings: Saint Mary’s 60. Santa Clara 91, San Francisco 93, Loyola Marymount 102, Pacific 151, Pepperdine 205, Portland 273 and San Diego 286. Washington State is No. 98.

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