Monterey Herald

Houston back at No. 1 in AP Top 25 poll


Houston returned to No. 1 in the AP men's college basketball poll on Monday for the third time this season, while Northweste­rn and Texas A&M barged into the rankings after each had a pair of impressive wins last week.

The Cougars, riding a seven-game winning streak, jumped over Alabama and back into the top spot, where they spent two weeks in November and December and had another two-week stint last month. They picked up 48 first-place votes from the 62-member national media panel to lay claim to No. 1 with just two weeks left in the regular season.

“This is my fourth year coaching these guys. We've developed a really good program here,” said Houston coach Kelvin Sampson, referring to his veteran leaders that went to a Final Four two years ago and the Elite Eight last season. “But the emphasis is `we have.' One person doesn't do it. I'm proud of our program. I'm proud of everyone in it.”

The Crimson Tide dropped only one spot after losing to Tennessee and routing Georgia in their lone week at No. 1. They held onto seven first-place votes, while Kansas also earned seven to climb two spots to No. 3 in this week's poll.

UCLA remained at No. 4 while Purdue slid two spots to round out of the top five.

Women's basketball

SOUTH CAROLINA'S NO. 1 RUN IN WOMEN'S TOP 25 HITS 35 WEEKS >> South Carolina survived one of its stiffest tests of the season to remain No. 1 in The Associated Press women's college basketball poll released Monday.

The Gamecocks (27-0) topped Mississipp­i in overtime on Sunday to win their 33rd consecutiv­e game and secure the top spot in the poll for a 35th consecutiv­e week. That is the third-longest run atop the poll, with UConn (51 weeks) and Louisiana Tech (36) having had longer streaks at No. 1. The Gamecocks broke a tie with UConn for third place.

South Carolina received 27 of the 28 first-place votes from the national media panel. It was the first time this season that the team wasn't a unanimous choice at No. 1.

Indiana got the other first place vote and stayed second in the poll. Stanford, UConn and LSU round out the top five teams.


ANTETOKOUN­MPO GOING TO NEW YORK FOR WRIST EXAM >> Milwaukee star Giannis Antetokoun­mpo was scheduled to be in New York to undergo testing and get further evaluation on his injured right wrist, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Sunday night because neither the Bucks nor Antetokoun­mpo released the plans publicly.

ESPN first reported that Antetokoun­mpo was going to New York, and it was later confirmed by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Antetokoun­mpo injured his wrist Thursday night in Chicago after attempting to block a shot. Antetokoun­mpo exited after only nine minutes and did not return. He had X-rays and Bucks coach Mike Budenholze­r said at the time they came back clean.

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