Ballot Breakdown: Texas A&M and Utah return to the ranking


By Jim O’Connell - AP College Basketball Writer



Texas A&M's Tyler Davis (23) celebrates his game winning shot with teammates during overtime of an NCAA college basketball game against Kentucky, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in College Station, Texas. Texas A&M won 79-77. (AP Photo/Sam Craft)


Utah's Brandon Taylor, right, drives past Southern California's Jordan McLaughlin, left, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)


Villanova's Kevin Rafferty, from left, Ryan Arcidiacono, Daniel Ochefu, Henry Lowe, and Patrick Farrell celebrate after their 77-67 win over Butler in an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Villanova, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)


Texas A&M and Utah both return to the Top 25 this week, replacing Dayton and Providence.

The Aggies (20-7) return at No. 21 after wins over Mississippi and Kentucky last week. They had lost five of six before those games, knocking them out of the poll for the first time since the third week of the season. Texas A&M, which was ranked as high as fifth this season, was out of the poll for just one week.

Utah (21-7) was out of the poll for the last seven weeks. The Utes come back in at No. 22 having won four straight games. They were ranked 16th in the preseason poll.

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SEE YA

Dayton (21-5) fell out of the poll from 15th after losses to Saint Joseph’s and St. Bonaventure last week. The Flyers were ranked for the last three weeks and four total weeks this season.

Providence (19-8) had been ranked for the last 12 weeks and reached as high as No. 8 this season. Since then, the Friars have lost four of five, including last week’s loss to Xavier.

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BEATING RANKEDS

Oklahoma’s victory over West Virginia last weekend was the Sooners’ sixth win over a ranked team this season, the most ranked wins for any team in the country.

Four teams have five wins over ranked teams: Iowa, Kansas, Texas and Xavier.

So far this season, 86 teams have registered a total of 180 wins over ranked opponents with 17 coming last week. For numerologists out there, four places have lost just four times: Nos. 2, 6, 12 and 19.

The worst of the numbers is 20th which has lost 13 times. It is the only rank to have lost more than 10 times.

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NOVA NO. 1

This is Villanova’s third week as the No. 1 team in the AP poll. That ties the Wildcats with four others at that number. Three of the four have all been No. 1 since 2009: Gonzaga, Pittsburgh and Wake Forest. The fourth team with three weeks at No. 1 is Marquette, which was last on top of the poll in 1978.

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CONFERENCE CALL

The Big 12 and Atlantic Coast Conference remained tied at the top with six teams each. The Big Ten held third with five ranked teams. Then came the changes. The Pac-12 now has three teams with Utah moving in. The Big East dropped to two teams — both are in the top five — and the Southeastern Conference gained a second team with Texas A&M. The American Athletic Conference has the other team with SMU.

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DOUBLE-RANKED GAMES

There are nine games between ranked teams this week starting with Monday night’s matchups: No. 17 Iowa State at No. 14 West Virginia and No. 3 Virginia at No.12 Miami.

On Tuesday, No. 2 Kansas is at No. 19 Baylor. On Wednesday, it’s No. 1 Villanova at No. 5 Xavier.

The other games are Saturday: No. 11 Louisville at Miami, No. 7 North Carolina at Virginia, No. 10 Maryland at No. 20 Purdue, No. 3 Oklahoma at No. 25 Texas and No. 9 Arizona at No. 22 Utah.

Texas A&M’s Tyler Davis (23) celebrates his game winning shot with teammates during overtime of an NCAA college basketball game against Kentucky, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in College Station, Texas. Texas A&M won 79-77. (AP Photo/Sam Craft)
http://wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_108825903-05e2cae1580d4344865109a92490f7ed.jpgTexas A&M’s Tyler Davis (23) celebrates his game winning shot with teammates during overtime of an NCAA college basketball game against Kentucky, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in College Station, Texas. Texas A&M won 79-77. (AP Photo/Sam Craft)

Utah’s Brandon Taylor, right, drives past Southern California’s Jordan McLaughlin, left, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)
http://wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_108825903-4b3ac09ebac34ebca1ad2fe25cb7ee07.jpgUtah’s Brandon Taylor, right, drives past Southern California’s Jordan McLaughlin, left, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

Villanova’s Kevin Rafferty, from left, Ryan Arcidiacono, Daniel Ochefu, Henry Lowe, and Patrick Farrell celebrate after their 77-67 win over Butler in an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Villanova, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
http://wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_108825903-7ffa81389ed54accb7d1d8bbd9c60839.jpgVillanova’s Kevin Rafferty, from left, Ryan Arcidiacono, Daniel Ochefu, Henry Lowe, and Patrick Farrell celebrate after their 77-67 win over Butler in an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Villanova, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

By Jim O’Connell

AP College Basketball Writer

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