After using a strong second half comeback to survive a home scare on Friday night against a talented St. Mary's team, St. John's continued to rise up the national rankings earlier today and now sits at 17th overall in the AP Poll and 19th in the USA Today Coaches Poll.
These new rankings reflect a jump of three spots from last week's AP Poll and four spots from last week's Coaches Poll for the surging Red Storm, who remain the second-highest ranked team in the Big East for the second straight week.
AP Top 25
USA Today Coaches Poll
|1.||Kentucky Wildcats (65)||12-0||1625||1|
|2.||Duke Blue Devils||10-0||1548||2|
|11.||Wichita State Shockers||8-1||966||11|
|12.||Iowa State Cyclones||9-1||821||13|
|16.||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||11-1||536||21|
|17.||St. John's Red Storm||9-2||517||20|
|18.||West Virginia Mountaineers||10-1||464||22|
|20.||North Carolina Tar Heels||9-3||414||24|
|21.||Ohio State Buckeyes||9-2||411||12|
|23.||Northern Iowa Panthers||10-1||162||29|
|24.||Colorado State Rams||11-0||144||28|
|25.||TCU Horned Frogs||11-0||120||27|
|23||San Diego State||8-3||97||17|
|Others Receiving Votes: Georgetown 40; California 35; TCU 29; Virginia Commonwealth 27; Minnesota 18; Miami (Fla.) 17; Michigan State 13; Arkansas 11; Seton Hall 9; Old Dominion 8; Oklahoma State 7; Indiana 7; Florida 6; LSU 5; Illinois 4; Butler 4; Penn State 3; Saint Mary's 1.|
Poll movements in the Big East
Again it was the undefeated Villanova Wildcats who came in as the only Big East team to be ranked above St. John's this week. The 11-0 Wildcats remain at number 7 in both the AP and Coaches Polls after they outlasted Syracuse in overtime on Sunday, 82-77. Villanova will play only one more game before conference play begins, as they'll take on NJIT at home tomorrow night before their Big East opener against Butler on New Year's Eve.
Dropping out of the latest top 25 was Butler, who received just two votes in the AP and four in the Coaches after they lost their only game this week to Indiana in the Crossroads Classic by the score of 82-73. This was the second straight loss for the Bulldogs after they dropped a game last Sunday at Tennessee, and they now sit at 8-3 on the season. Butler will take on UT Martin tonight at 7:00 PM before they face Belmont next Sunday to round out non-conference play.
While Butler has fallen out of the rankings this week, the Georgetown Hoyas appear to be right on the verge of entering the top 25. Georgetown came in at 26th overall in both the AP and Coaches Polls today after they won their only game this week against Charlotte. The 7-3 Hoyas will have a full week to prepare for their final non-conference game against Indiana on Saturday before their Big East opener at Xavier. A win over the Hoosiers at Madison Square Garden would likely propel Georgetown into the top 25 for the first time this season.
The only other Big East team to receive any votes this week was Seton Hall, although the Pirates received just three votes in the AP Poll and nine in the Coaches. After wins over St. Peter's and at USF earlier in the week, Seton Hall was beaten up handily on the road at Georgia yesterday, 65-47. Their lone non-conference game remaining is against Maine on Saturday before they face St. John's to kick off Big East play.
Creighton, Marquette, and DePaul all continue to struggle with four losses (although Marquette did defeat Arizona State last Tuesday), while Xavier and Providence did not receive any top 25 votes this week. The Musketeers lost a double-overtime thriller at Auburn on Saturday, while the Friars have won three straight and will face Miami tonight in Brooklyn.
With the Big East weekly awards being handed out this afternoon as well, D'Angelo Harrison was unable to take home his third straight Player of the Week award, as that honor went to Villanova forward JayVaughn Pinkston after he put up 25 points and 10 rebounds in the Wildcats overtime victory over Syracuse on Saturday. Marquette guard Duane Wilson continued his stellar freshman season as he took home his second Big East Rookie of the Week award of the year. Wilson scored 19 points in his team's victory over Arizona State this week.
Despite not being named player of the week, D`Angelo Harrison was named to the Big East Honor Roll today, joining Creighton forward Toby Hegner, Georgetown forward L.J. Peak, Marquette center Luke Fischer, and Providence guard Kris Dunn.