Villanova starts its fourth week as the No. 1 team in The Associated Press Top 25 and the ranked teams stay the same from the last poll except for Florida, which replaces fellow Southeastern Conference member South Carolina.
The Wildcats, 12-0, received 56 first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel to maintain its big lead over UCLA, 13-0, which received three No. 1 votes.
Kansas, 11-1, was third, followed by Baylor, 12-0, which got the other six first-place votes.
KU is ranked for the 150th consecutive poll, a streak that started on Feb. 3, 2009. The second-longest current streak is 86 polls by Arizona. The all-time record is 221 consecutive polls by UCLA from 1966-80.
Duke remained fifth while Louisville jumped from 10th to sixth following its 73-70 victory over Kentucky last week.
Gonzaga is seventh followed by Kentucky, North Carolina and Creighton.
West Virginia is again No. 11, followed by Virginia, Butler, Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana, Xavier, Arizona, Saint Mary’s and Florida State.
The last five ranked teams are Oregon, Southern California, Cincinnati, Notre Dame and Florida.
Florida, 9-3, returns to the Top 25 after two weeks out of the rankings. The Gators come back in off a 94-71 victory over Arkansas-Little Rock in their first game in the renovated O’Connell Center. They had played their first 11 games on the road or at neutral sites.
South Carolina, 9-2, was ranked for four weeks, reaching as high as No. 16. The Gamecocks lost 62-60 last week to instate rival Clemson.
With the start of conference play this week, there are six games featuring two ranked teams.
On Wednesday, No. 2 UCLA is at No. 21 Oregon and No. 6 Louisville is host to No. 12 Virginia. On Friday, No. 21 Oregon plays host to No. 22 Southern California.
On Saturday, Villanova puts the No. 1 ranking on the line by visiting No. 10 Creighton. The others are No. 6 Louisville home to No. 16 Indiana and No. 20 Florida State is at No. 12 Virginia.
UConn atop women’s poll
UConn is still the unanimous No. 1 atop The Associated Press women’s basketball poll.
The Huskies received all 33 first place votes again after beating then-No. 12 Ohio State and Nebraska to stretch their winning streak to 86 consecutive games. UConn faces No. 4 Maryland on Thursday. A victory would be the team’s 30th straight on the road tying the NCAA record. It would also leave them three victories short of matching the 90-game overall winning streak the school set from 2008-11.
Notre Dame, Baylor, Maryland and Mississippi State followed UConn in the poll again. The top 11 teams remain unchanged as most teams had a light week of games because of the holidays.
California entered the Top 25 for the first time this season after topping then-No. 20 Oklahoma in a tournament in Las Vegas. The unbeaten Bears open up Pac-12 play this weekend. Kansas State fell out of the poll.