Michigan State stays put in Associated Press Top 25 college basketball poll

Detroit News staff and wires

Michigan State notched a pair of victories last week, but it wasn't enough to give the Spartans a push in Monday's Associated Press Top 25 men's college basketball poll.

The Spartans remain at No. 10 this week, leapfrogged by Auburn, which jumped two spots to check in at No. 9.

Michigan State's Julius Marble II (34) battles Northwestern's Ryan Young (15) for a loose ball during the first half Sunday in Evanston, Illinois.

Michigan State (12-2, 3-0 Big Ten) won both of its games last week, including a 73-67 victory Sunday at Northwestern in its return to Big Ten play. Michigan State also defeated High Point last week, 81-68, with a lineup missing four players — including two starters — in COVID-19 protocols.

The Spartans play host to Nebraska on Wednesday before heading to Ann Arbor on Sunday to take on Michigan.

Baylor kept its firm hold on No. 1 in poll, with few changes at the top and no new teams entering the rankings.

The reigning national champion Bears earned all 61 first-place votes for the third time in four weeks to easily outdistance No. 2 Duke. That comes after Baylor (13-0) won its Big 12 opener on the road against then-No. 8 Iowa State, marking its 19th straight win going back to last year’s title run in the Indianapolis bubble.

The Blue Devils (11-1) remained in place for the fourth straight week behind the Bears. They haven’t played since Dec. 22 after having to postpone two Atlantic Coast Conference games due to COVID-19 protocols.

Purdue, Gonzaga and UCLA rounded out the top five, followed by Kansas and USC in an unchanged top seven. It represented a poll with few major moves and a reshuffling of the same 25 teams from last week.

Nine teams moved up in the poll, led by No. 8 Arizona moving up one spot and No. 9 Auburn moving up two to crack the top 10 for the first time this season.

Providence tied Kentucky for No. 16 after making the week’s biggest jump of five spots, while No. 15 Alabama jumped four sports.

No. 24 Seton Hall took the biggest tumble, falling nine spots after Big East losses to Providence and No. 19 Villanova. No. 21 LSU fell five spots, while No. 18 Tennessee slid four and No. 11 Iowa State fell three.

Michigan (7-5), which lost 85-71 last week to Central Florida, remains unranked.

Associated Press Top 25

1. Baylor (61 first-place votes), 13-0, 1525 points (last week: 1)

2. Duke, 11-1, 1447 (2)

3. Purdue, 12-1, 1376 (3)

4. Gonzaga, 11-2, 1314 (4)

5. UCLA, 8-1, 1287 (5)

6. Kansas, 11-1, 1237 (6)

7. Southern Cal, 12-0, 1015 (7)

8. Arizona, 11-1, 1013 (9)

9. Auburn, 12-1, 976 (11)

10. Michigan State, 12-2, 934 (10)

11. Iowa State, 12-1, 896 (8)

12. Houston, 12-2, 849 (12)

13. Ohio State, 9-2, 819 (13)

14. Texas, 11-2, 640 (17)

15. Alabama, 10-3, 589 (19)

16. Kentucky, 11-2, 560 (18)

16. Providence, 13-1, 560 (21)

18. Tennessee, 9-3, 519 (14)

19. Villanova, 9-4, 437 (22)

20. Colorado State, 10-0, 386 (20)

21. LSU, 12-1, 371 (16)

22. Xavier, 11-2, 270 (23)

23. Wisconsin, 10-2, 221 (24)

24. Seton Hall, 9-3, 174 (15)

25. Texas Tech, 10-2, 142 (25)

Others receiving votes: Illinois 74, Oklahoma 71, Loyola Chicago 40, UConn 39, Georgia 22, West Virginia 6, Iowa 5, Minnesota 3, San Francisco 3, Davidson 3, Creighton 2.