Local Sports

Illinois Drops from Top 25; Duke New No. 1

The Illinois Fighting Illini have fallen out of the latest college basketball top 25 rankings with major shakeups as the season starts to offer more clarity on who passes the eye test. 


There's a new No. 1 in men's college basketball. Duke took over the top spot in the latest AP Top 25 poll released Monday as part of a major shakeup in the rankings. It's the first time since 2019 the Blue Devils, who were No. 5 last week, have been ranked No. 1 in the poll. Duke's big move comes amid a 7-0 start to the season after knocking off No. 1 Gonzaga 84-81 on Friday.


Purdue moved up one spot to No. 2, its highest AP ranking in more than three decades, after it, too, continued its undefeated season last week with a win over Nebraska-Omaha to improve to 6-0. It has two wins over ranked opponents already on its dossier -- over North Carolina and No. 6 Villanova -- and carries one of the strongest resumes into this week with the Big Ten/ACC Challenge on deck.


Gonzaga, the long-time No. 1 in the AP poll, fell only two spots to No. 3. It's the first time in more than a year the Zags aren't ranked No. 1 after going wire-to-wire with the No. 1 ranking last season and opening this season at the top of the poll. 




Beating the No. 1 team in college basketball, turns out, will win you the support of coaches across the country. The Duke Blue Devils did as much Friday by dispatching of the top-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs, 84-81, and were rewarded by coaches in the ballot box by supplanting the Zags at No. 1 in the Coaches Poll that updated on Monday, bringing in 19 of a possible 31 first-place votes. Duke also came in at No. 1 in the AP poll earlier Monday.


Gonzaga dropped only two spots to No. 3 after the loss, which was its first of the season. It's the first time since Nov. 12, 2020 that it was not No. 1 in a regular-season Coaches Poll ranking. It's the first time Duke has been No. 1 in the poll since Nov. 25, 2019, after it opened the season 6-0. 


Duke's 7-0 start to the season has been book-ended thus far by two terrific wins on the resume. It opened the season with a win over No. 10 Kentucky, 79-71, and its win over Gonzaga was easily the most impressive victory by any team in the sport this season (so far). Tests will come quick, though, with a road trip vs. Ohio State on deck Tuesday as part of the Big Ten/ACC Challenge before a three-game homestand of tune-ups ahead of league play.


The rest of this week's Coaches Poll also saw some shifting around throughout, with Purdue up to No. 2, Baylor up to No. 4 and UCLA down to No. 5. Villanova, Kansas, Texas, Arkansas and Kentucky make up the rest of the new-look top-10. 

Townhall Top of the Hour News

Local Weather - Sponsored By:


Local News

DeWittDN on Facebook