AP Top 25 rankings: New No. 1 Kansas takes 63 of 65 first-place votes

Denzel Valentine and Michigan State, up to No. 2, have Kansas in their sights. (USATSI)

Kansas has taken over as the new No. 1 team in the country after a week of competitive conference play put the AP Top 25 through a blender, emerging with many of the same ingredients and a slightly different look. The Jayhawks received 63 of the potential 65 first-place votes (Michigan State took the other two) on the way to re-taking a spot they held for two weeks in January.

Seven of the top ten teams in last week’s poll lost this week, but the shake up didn’t really do a ton to change the perspective of the AP voters in terms of college basketball’s pecking order. Sure, Villanova’s loss to Xavier dropped the Wildcats out of that No. 1 spot the program was exhilarated to hold, but Jay Wright’s team is still in the top five at No. 3.

Arizona and Iowa dropped nine spots and eight spots, respectively, but remained in the rankings while while Utah was one of the biggest risers, up nine spots to No. 13. Only one team dropped out of the poll: Notre Dame, ranked No. 23 last week, dropped out of the poll, making room for a Cal, the polls only new addition at No. 25.

So while college basketball seems crazier than ever with ranked teams losing in these competitive conference games at the end of February, the top teams have already separated themselves. Now the fun begins outside the polls and in the brackets, where seeding and matchups will determine the chances of title contention.

Here’s the full poll:

1. Kansas (25-4)

2. Michigan State (24-5)

3. Villanova (25-4)

4. Virginia (22-6)

5. Xavier (25-4)

6. Oklahoma (22-6)

7. Miami (23-5)

8. North Carolina (23-6)

9. Oregon (23-6)

10. West Virginia (22-7)

11. Louisville (22-7)

12. Indiana (23-6)

13. Utah (23-7)

14. Maryland (23-6)

15. Purdue (22-7)

16. Iowa (20-8)

17. Duke (21-8)

18. Arizona (22-7)

19. Baylor (21-8)

20. Texas A&M (22-7)

21. Iowa State (20-9)

22. Kentucky (21-8)

23. Texas (19-10)

24. SMU (24-4)

25. California (21-8)

Dropped out: Notre Dame

Jumped in: Cal

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