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Michigan State drops to No. 14 in AP college basketball poll; Baylor sticks at No. 1

Detroit News staff and wires

A split on the road last week cost Michigan State in the Associated Press Top 25 college basketball poll.

The Spartans (15-5) checked in at No. 14 — down three spots — in this week's rankings, released Monday. Michigan State failed to overcome a slow start in falling at Indiana on Thursday before rebounding with a 70-52 victory Sunday at Minnesota.

Gabe Brown (44) and Michigan State bounced back from a loss Thursday by defeating Minnesota on Sunday, 70-52.

Baylor is No. 1 for a second straight week in an AP poll that had no major changes at the top, a rare bit of stability in a wildly unpredictable season.

The Bears stayed well ahead of No. 2 Gonzaga, part of an unchanged top seven for the first time this season. In fact, the only change in the top 10 came with Villanova moving up a spot to No. 8 to swap positions with No. 9 Duke. That comes in a season that has seen seven different teams reach No. 1 this season, matching a record set during the 1982-83 season.

Baylor (17-1) hopped over Gonzaga last week to reach No. 1 for the second time in program history, then earned 44 of 64 first-place votes to keep a firm hold on the top spot after beating Oklahoma and Florida last week.

The Zags earned 19 first-place votes to remain either No. 1 or No. 2 in the poll since the middle of December, followed by Kansas, San Diego State — the last unbeaten team in Division I — and Florida State.

Louisville, Dayton, Villanova, Duke and Seton Hall rounded out the top 10.

No. 22 LSU, No. 23 Wichita State and No. 24 Penn State were the week’s new additions, re-entering the poll after appearances earlier this season. Texas Tech, Memphis and Arizona fell out of the rankings.

Associated Press Top 25

1. Baylor (44 first-place votes), 17-1, 1578 points (last week: 1)

2. Gonzaga (19), 21-1, 1552 (2)

3. Kansas (1), 16-3, 1434 (3)

4. San Diego State, 21-0, 1408 (4)

5. Florida State, 17-2, 1318 (5)

6. Louisville, 17-3, 1277 (6)

7. Dayton, 18-2, 1163 (7)

8. Villanova, 16-3, 1110 (9)

9. Duke, 16-3, 1084 (8)

10. Seton Hall, 15-4, 1055 (10)

11. Oregon, 17-4, 926 (12)

12. West Virginia, 16-3, 874 (14)

13. Kentucky, 15-4, 839 (15)

14. Michigan State, 15-5, 751 (11)

15. Maryland, 16-4, 650 (17)

16. Butler, 16-4, 631 (13)

17. Auburn, 17-2, 619 (16)

18. Iowa, 14-5, 545 (19)

19. Illinois, 15-5, 483 (21)

20. Colorado, 16-4, 314 (23)

21. Houston, 16-4, 296 (25)

22. LSU, 15-4, 260 (NR)

23. Wichita State, 17-3, 161 (NR)

24. Penn State, 14-5, 114 (NR)

25. Rutgers, 15-5, 102 (24)

Others receiving votes: Creighton 59, Arizona 55, Texas Tech 33, Ohio State 16, Indiana 15, ETSU 14, Northern Iowa 13, Memphis 11, Southern Cal 9, Purdue 6, Rhode Island 6, Florida 4, Arkansas 3, Saint Mary's (Cal) 3, SMU 3, Tulsa 3, Akron 1, Harvard 1, Wisconsin 1.