Welcome back to cheering for a top 25 team, Marquette Golden Eagles fans.
The newest Associated Press poll is out, as it is a Monday after all, and Marquette finds themselves ranked #21 in the country. The Golden Eagles have beaten the #12 team in the country at Fiserv Forum on the past two Saturdays, and that was enough to vault Marquette onto the ballot for a majority of voters.
MU picked up 281 points in the polling, well clear of #20 Arizona State and #22 Iowa. The votes that Marquette got are all over the place, and don’t form a real bell curve if you look at them. Shannon Ryan (Chicago Tribune) leads the way with Marquette at #13 on her list, and at least one voter has the Golden Eagles ranked in every spot between there and #25. There are still 17 voters who are not impressed by those two wins and did not include Marquette in their poll. Graham Couch, who famously has rules about how he votes, removed Duke, Kansas, Tennessee, Auburn, Texas Tech, Kentucky, Villanova, and Texas from his ballot this week and then installed Marquette at #20. He has Wisconsin at #7 after losing to Marquette. That ballot is a hoot and a half.
With Gonzaga losing to Tennessee in Arizona on Sunday, it seemed likely that we would get a new #1 this week, and in fact we did. Noted former Marquette opponent Kansas is now the #1 team in the country, and thus I lament the 24-0 run all over again. Buffalo is the next MU opponent that’s ranked as the Bulls climb three spots to #14 this week. Wisconsin dips four spots to #16 while Villanova moves from #21 to #17. We got a rarity in the #25 spot as Indiana and Kansas State are tied with Syracuse for the final spot in the poll with 118 points. Officially, all three teams get to call themselves a top 25 team even though it’s a top 25 with 27 teams. It’s the first three-way tie in the poll since 1991.
There are three Big East teams in the receiving votes department this week. St. John’s snared 57 points, Butler picked up 2, and Seton Hall earned one 25th place vote. I kind of find it fascinating that the Red Storm is 9-0 and really can’t get anywhere close to the top 25, meanwhile Furman is chugging along at 10-0 and #23 in the country. Weird!
With Finals Week fully engaged on campus, Marquette has gone into their Wojo era traditional dormant period. The next game is scheduled for Tuesday, December 18, when North Dakota comes to town. UND is 5-5 on the year with just two Division 1 wins.... and both of them are against UW-Milwaukee in a weird home-and-home situation.
You can check out the full top 25 poll right here.