New week, new Associated Press men’s college basketball poll, same ranking for Marquette.
The Golden Eagles are still the #4 team in the country this week. They earned 1,338 points in the polling, a little bit more than they had last week. Nothing in the top nine changed, so MU is still in between #3 Arizona (1,387 points) and #5 Connecticut (1,320 points), and as you can see, there’s not much separating those three teams.
Six voters are leading the way, putting Marquette at #2 on their ballot. They have votes at every spot between there and #9, and the largest number of votes came at #4. Ben Steele, Marquette’s very own beat writer for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, installed the Golden Eagles at #3 this week.
The 2023 Maui Invitational is already well underway by the time you read this, and it is a stacked field. Let’s put it this way: Marquette is the third best ranked team in the AP poll that is in Hawaii. #1 Kansas and #2 Purdue stand in front of Marquette, while #7 Tennessee and #11 Gonzaga stand behind the Golden Eagles. Marquette’s first opponent in the Invitational, UCLA, is receiving votes and is the unofficial #31 team in the country. Needless to say, all but one of those teams (as well as Syracuse and host Chaminade) are coming out of the event with at least one loss, so the rankings will look very different next week, one way or another.
As far as the rest of Marquette’s schedule, we already mentioned UConn one spot behind MU in the top 25, and they aren’t the only opponent in the top 10. Creighton is one of the nine teams staying steady since last week, holding onto the #8 spot in the poll. Texas is up to #15, four spots better than last week, even though they barely beat Louisville on Sunday afternoon. We’ll see what happens to them after they face UConn on Monday night.
In the Receiving Votes area, UCLA is joined by two squads. Illinois drops out of the top 25 after losing to Marquette but still earns 138 points, while Villanova (45 points) also falls out of the rankings following a road loss to Penn.
Marquette is back in action on Monday night when they face UCLA in the Maui Invitational quarterfinals. Tipoff is scheduled for 10:30pm Central time on ESPN2, although that’s going to be dependent on the Kansas/Chaminade game right beforehand.