Author: Rob Dauster

Kris Dunn
(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: Providence, Oregon head on the road

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GAME OF THE DAY: No. 10 Providence at UMass, 7:00 p.m.

It’s a relatively slow night in the college basketball world, but there should be some fireworks in Amherst as No. 10 Providence will be paying a visit to UMass. The Minutemen have not looked like an Atlantic 10 contender through the season’s first month, but they did catch a break squaring off with the Friars on a night where Providence may not have Kris Dunn, who is a game-time decision.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

  • No. 7 North Carolina will square off with Appalachian State back in Chapel Hill, their last game before the holidays.
  • Eastern Kentucky will get another shot at knocking off a high-major opponent when they visit No. 19 West Virginia.
  • Oregon will be heading down to Birmingham to take on a surprising Alabama team. The Ducks are not yet at full strength.
  • Gonzaga kicks off WCC play with a home date against Pepperdine.

AP Poll: Duke, Kentucky, Purdue, Iowa State drop from top ten

Duke guard Luke Kennard (5) goes up for a shot against Utah forward Dakarai Tucker (14) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
(AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
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The Michigan State Spartans are still the No. 1 team in the country, according to 64 of the 65 AP voters. The only other team to get an AP vote? The Kansas Jayhawks, who lost to Michigan State on the fifth day of the season.

What’s more interesting, however, is to see just how far some of the teams that lost fell. Iowa State, Kentucky, Duke and Purdue all dropped out of the top ten.

Here is the poll in its entirety.

No. 1 Michigan State (12-0, 64 first-place votes)
No. 2 Kansas (9-1, 1)
No. 3 Oklahoma (8-0)
No. 4 Maryland (10-1)
No. 5 Virginia (9-1)
No. 6 Xavier (11-0)
No. 7 North Carolina (9-2)
No. 8 Arizona (11-1)
No. 9 Butler (9-1)
No. 10 Providence (11-1)
No. 11 Iowa State (9-1)
No. 12 Kentucky (9-2)
No. 13 Miami (9-1)
No. 14 Purdue (11-1)
No. 15 Duke (9-2)
No. 16 Louisville (9-1)
No. 17 Villanova (8-2)
No. 18 SMU (9-0)
No. 19 West Virginia (9-1)
No. 20 George Washington (10-1)
No. 21 Texas A&M (9-2)
No. 22 Cincinnati (10-2)
No. 23 Baylor (8-2)
No. 24 Utah (9-2)
No. 25 South Carolina (10-0)

Coaches Poll: Kentucky drops outside the top ten

Alex Poythress, Ja'Mill Powell, Nick Mayo
(AP Photo/James Crisp)
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The new USA Today Coaches Poll is out and, in the least surprising decision ever, Michigan State remains at No. 1.

It’s not a consensus yet — Oklahoma still landed a pair of first-place votes — but the Spartans are clearly the best team in the country, assuming Denzel Valentine returns from his knee injury healthy.

The big movers this week: Iowa State, Duke and Kentucky dropping to 9, 10 and 11 after losses over the weekend.

Here’s the full poll:

No. 1 Michigan State (12-0, 29 first-place votes)
No. 2 Oklahoma (8-0, 2)
No. 3 Kansas (9-1)
No. 4 Maryland (10-1)
No. 5 Virginia (9-1)
No. 6 Xavier (11-0)
No. 7 North Carolina (9-2)
No. 8 Arizona (11-1)
No. 9 Iowa State (9-1)
No. 10 Duke (9-2)
No. 11 Kentucky (9-2)
No. 12 Butler (9-1)
No. 13 Purdue (11-1)
No. 14 Providence (11-1)
No. 15 Louisville (9-1)
No. 16 Miami (9-1)
No. 17 Villanova (8-2)
No. 18 West Virginia (9-1)
No. 19 Texas A&M (9-2)
No. 20 George Washington (10-1)
No. 21 Cincinnati (10-2)
No. 22 Baylor (8-2)
No. 23 South Carolina (10-0)
No. 24 Gonzaga (8-3)
No. 25 Vanderbilt (7-3)