Coaches Poll: North Carolina and Oklahoma stay at Nos. 1 and 2

Finally, there is some stability at the top of the coaches’ poll.

North Carolina remained the No. 1 team in the country this week, following a stretch of five straight weeks where the No. 1 position changed hands. Oklahoma also stayed at No. 2 following its win over LSU on Saturday.

Behind them, Maryland rose to No. 3, and a pair of Big East teams jumped up to Nos. 4 and 5. Vilanova and Xavier round out the top-five after a pair of strong weeks.

Beyond those five, Kansas, Iowa, Texas A&M, Virginia and Michigan State round out the top-10. Villanova’s opponent on Saturday, Providence, is currently sitting at No. 11.

The poll is also notable due to the absence of Duke. The last time Duke was not ranked in the poll was in February 2007, marking a near-nine-year run in the poll. Duke’s women’s team is also currently unranked for the first time in around 16 years, following its departure on Jan. 18. Pittsburgh also fell from the group of ranked teams.

Replacing the Blue Devils and Panthers were Dayton and the surprising Saint Mary’s Gaels. Dayton is now 18-3 and avenged its sole Atlantic 10 loss of the season to La Salle this weekend. Saint Mary’s is 18-2 and has a tough road trip going to BYU this week followed by a game at San Diego.

Here is the full poll.

1. North Carolina

2. Oklahoma

3. Maryland

4. Villanova

5. Xavier

6. Kansas

7. Iowa

8. Texas A&M

9. Virginia

10. Michigan State

11. Providence

12. West Virginia

13. Baylor

14. Iowa State

15. Miami (Fla.)

16. Purdue

17. Oregon

18. Louisville

19. Kentucky

20. Arizona

21. Indiana

22. Wichita State

23. South Carolina

24. Dayton

25. Saint Mary’s

No longer ranked: Duke, Pittsburgh

Newly ranked, Dayton, Saint Mary’s

Next five: Pittsburgh, Duke, Utah, Michigan, Notre Dame

Xavier entered the top-five of the Coaches Poll this week. (USATSI)
Xavier entered the top-five of the Coaches Poll this week. (USATSI)

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